TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – Across the nation, and in Northeastern Kansas, viewers suddenly lost some of their local TV stations.
At midnight on July 3, DIRECTV and AT&T U-verse dropped the network and local community programming for over 120 stations, impacting viewers in 97 markets across the United States.
This was due to a snag in contract negotiations between DIRECTV and KSNT’s parent company, Nexstar Broadcasting Group, Inc.
Nexstar explained the situation in a press release:
Nexstar has been negotiating in good faith to establish a mutually agreeable contract with DIRECTV. Significantly, Nexstar has offered DIRECTV the same rates it offered to other large distribution partners with whom it completed successful negotiations with in 2019 to date. While Nexstar believed progress was being made in the negotiations, DIRECTV misled Nexstar as it requested that viewers not be informed about the pending expiration as long as negotiations were continuing to be constructive. Yet, with minutes to go before the prior agreement was to expire, DIRECTV/AT&T did not accept Nexstar’s offer for an extension which would have allowed viewers in the affected markets to view their favorite network shows, special events, sports, local news and other programming on the Fourth of July and until such time as a new agreement can be reached.
This has left many loyal viewers without access to some of their local channels, including KSNT and KTMJ.
Nexstar expressed their regrets as the situation continues:
Nexstar deeply regrets DIRECTV/AT&T’s rejection of the extension as it deprives viewers in the affected markets of broadcasts of leading network content from ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, CW, and MyNetworkTV as well as local news and other programming produced specifically for these local communities.
While we understand this is a frustrating and sudden change, the only thing we can do at this time is relay a phone number customers can call asking for their local channels back.
Consumers and viewers affected by DIRECTV/AT&T’s blackout can contact DIRECTV/AT&T directly at 208 South Akard Street, Dallas, TX 75202 and by phone at 855-567-1569 or 210-821-4105.