Weather Channel comes back to DirecTV after contract dispute

National/World News

(Photo: Courtesy the Weather Channel)

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NEW YORK — DirecTV’s bitter three-month-long dispute with The Weather Channel is over.

The channel will return to DirecTV lineups on Wednesday, the two companies said in a news release Tuesday.

Big cable channels are rarely blacked out by distributors, and when they are, the disruptions tend to only last for hours or days. But this one began in mid-January and seemed without end.

During the dispute, The Weather Channel said DirecTV refused to give it a slight per-subscriber fee increase. DirecTV, citing cost pressures, said it wanted the channel to accept a fee decrease, which channel owners rarely do.

The companies declined to say Tuesday what happened with the fee negotiations. But in the news release, both parties said The Weather Channel had “agreed to reduce reality programming by half on weekdays; return instant local weather and allow authenticated DirecTV customers to watch The Weather Channel’s video programming on multiple devices inside and outside the home.”

Executives from both companies apologized for the blackout and asked customers to forgive them.

“Our viewers deserve better than a public dispute and we pledge to reward their loyalty with exceptional programming and more weather focused news,” said David Kenny, CEO of the Weather Company, parent to The Weather Channel, in the release.

DirecTV chief content officer Dan York added that “it’s a shame these disputes are played out on a public stage.

“I know this was frustrating for many of our customers, but their patience was ultimately rewarded with a better deal and a better product,” he said.

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