DirecTV says may pull the plug on Fox TV shows

Fri Oct 21, 2011 1:08am EDT
 
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(Reuters) - A dispute has broken out between News Corp owned Fox Networks and DirecTV Group, the largest U.S. satellite TV provider, over carriage fees that could potentially lead to DirecTV pulling the plug on Fox channels from Nov 1.

"(Fox) are currently asking our customers to pay 40 percent more for the exact same Fox channels that they already receive and that is simply unfair and unwarranted," DirecTV said in a statement.

Fox said in a statement that the company had proposed to keep the Fox Networks on DirecTV for the same price and on the same terms while an agreement is worked out.

Scott Grogin, a spokesman for Fox Networks, said the company is still negotiating with DirecTV.

DirecTV said it will be forced to suspend Fox channels as soon as November 1 unless News Corp is willing to move toward a more reasonable price increase.

But Fox argued that DirecTV "has given us no chance to respond before taking an unnecessarily aggressive posture and going public."

In a similar dispute last year, Cablevision customers lost Walt Disney Co's ABC for several hours till 15 minutes into the live telecast of the Oscars Awards.

(Reporting by Sakthi Prasad in Bangalore; Editing by Anshuman Daga)