Worry of LSU, SEC football game blackout for some TV viewers appears to be over
BATON ROUGE – It appears a possible blackout of SEC football games to a select group of TV viewers because of television license negotiations won't happen.
AT&T, which owns its namesake cable service and the DirecTV satellite service, had been locked in a dispute with Disney over charges to sell the company’s television productions. Subscription video services are required to pay a fee for re-selling a television company’s material.
Popular sports cable networks are among the channels owned by Disney – including ESPN, its subchannels and the SEC Network.
The SEC took to social media last week, warning of a blackout of games seen on ESPN and SEC Network channels.
Attention @SEC fans!— Southeastern Conference (@SEC) September 13, 2019
If you are a DirecTV, AT&T U-Verse or AT&T TVNow subscriber, you may not be able to view games on @SECNetwork (and other @ESPN and Disney networks) this weekend.
Visit https://t.co/VG8i4nh0K0 for the latest info.
Even LSU released a statement about the situation Friday: "LSU is fully supporting the Southeastern Conference and its effort to keep ESPN and SEC Network on the air with AT&T and DirecTV."
Should a blackout occur, it does not impact viewers who watch TV on other local cable services: Cox, Eatel or satellite service Dish. Broadcast TV station programs are not affected, either.
However, bars, restaurants and tailgaters who use a DirecTV satellite to watch games on campus will be blocked should a deal not be reached.
By Saturday morning, the Disney networks were still available and industry reports suggested an extension had been worked out. A day later, industry insiders pointed to what appeared to be a long-term deal that would keep the networks on the AT&T cable and satellite services. A special website created by Disney removed all mentions of the impending blackout.
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