CBS Goes Dark on Dish Ahead of Thanksgiving NFL Game: Let the Finger-Pointing Begin

It’s “another example of the company punishing its subscribers instead of negotiating a fair carriage deal,” broadcaster says

Dallas Cowboys

Boys, boys, boys, it’s Thanksgiving — can’t we all just break bread together? CBS stations have gone dark on the Dish Network, and both sides are blaming each other.

The broadcaster and the satellite TV provider could not come to terms on a carriage deal before the midnight deadline — and your Thanksgiving Day Dallas Cowboys football game could be in jeopardy.

Let’s take a look at the finger-pointing and dueling statements below.

“Dish has dropped CBS and several other local television stations owned by CBS, in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas, San Francisco, Atlanta, Boston, Seattle, Tampa, Detroit, Minneapolis, Miami, Denver, Sacramento, Pittsburgh and Baltimore,” CBS lamented early Tuesday morning. “In addition, CBS Sports Network, Pop and the Smithsonian Channel have been dropped.”

The network noted that Dish has dropped the signals of 400 TV stations from 29 different companies since 2013. “This particular dispute is yet another example of the company punishing its subscribers instead of negotiating a fair carriage deal that reflects the current marketplace,” CBS wrote.

Dish naturally sees it the other way.

“CBS is attempting to tax Dish customers on programming that’s losing viewers, tax Dish customers on programming available for free over the air, and tax Dish customers for content available directly from CBS,” said Warren Schlichting, Dish executive vice president of Marketing, Programming and Media Sales.

“Our customers are clear: they don’t want to pay a CBS tax. It’s regrettable and unnecessary that CBS is bringing its greed into the homes of millions of families this Thanksgiving,” he added.

This time around, Dish is arguing that the existence of the new paid streaming service CBS All Access further devalues the company’s broadcast business in terms of these ongoing carriage negotiations.

As per usual with such disputes, the satellite company is offering its customers free digital over-the-air antennas, which allow for one to still watch the broadcast networks, including CBS.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.