Dish Network drops FOX News Channel

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Dish Network has found itself at the center of another carriage dispute, this time with the FOX News suite of channels.

Both FOX News and the FOX Business Channel were removed from Dish’s lineup over the weekend, the result of the second-largest satellite television provider in the country failing to reach a retransmission agreement with FOX Entertainment Group, the parent company of the channels.

“It is disappointing that, after nearly two decades without a blackout, Fox News Channel has been blocked by Dish,” FOX executive Tim Carry said in a statement. “Dish’s record speaks for itself, and makes its rhetoric about ‘reasonable’ agreements ring hollow.”

The dispute is the third such involving Dish in the last half-year, with the satellite broadcaster previously removing a handful of Turner Broadcasting stations (among them, CNN and the Cartoon Network) as well as CBS local affiliates. The former involved Dish customers being unable to watch CNN and other Turner channels for more than a month; CBS locals were removed for less than a day.

In a statement on Sunday, Dish executive Warren Schlichting faulted FOX for the blackout, saying the satellite broadcaster offered a temporary extension that would have preserved carriage of FOX News and FOX Business, but that such an extension was ultimately rejected by FOX.

“FOX blacked out two of its news channels, using them as leverage to triple rates on sports and entertainment channels that are not in this contract,” Schlichting said.

Dish customers still have access to CNN, MSNBC, CNBC, Bloomberg News and the startup network Al Jazeera America.

Other FOX-owned channels, including FOX Sports 1, FX Network and local FOX affiliates, are unaffected by the dispute.