Gannett Denies Dish’s Auto Hop Claim

The broadcaster says the ad-zapping feature of Dish’s Hopper DVR is not a factor in the negotiations for a new retrans contract replacing the one that expires on Sunday.

Gannett Broadcasting today denied Dish’s assertion that, as part of its negotiations for a new retrans contract, Gannett was demanding that Dish block the commercial-skipping feature on its digital video recorders or agree to pay massive penalties. If not, Dish said, Gannett would pull its 19 stations from the satellite service.

A Gannett source with direct knowledge of the negotiations told TVNewsCheck: “Their claim that we demanded that Dish eliminate customer-enabled commercial-skipping technology found on its Hopper is completely false.”

In a public statement Gannett said: “Over the past several months, Gannett Broadcasting has worked hard to reach a fair agreement with Dish for continued carriage of our local broadcast stations. Thus far, Dish has refused to reach a fair, market-based deal with us.

“If Dish refuses to reach a deal before midnight, Oct.  7, Dish subscribers could lose their local Gannett station and access to some of the year’s best programming. We remain committed to continuing to negotiate with Dish right up to that deadline and believe an agreement is possible, as we are seeking nothing more than the same market-based terms that have allowed us to reach deals with TV providers across the country.

“Gannett has never had a service disruption with a major TV provider and we hope we do not face that situation with Dish. However, we have a responsibility to our viewers, so today we are beginning a public information campaign to make them aware of the situation and urge them to make their voices heard.”


Comments (10)

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Jose Lorenzo says:

October 5, 2012 at 3:47 pm

I hope Dish doesn’t cave in to Gannett’s threats. It’s my DVR; it’s my recording of one of Gannett’s CBS programs in the Washington, D.C. market, and I have an absolute right to skip or watch the commercials if I want to. I also have an absolute right to watch or not watch CBS programs on the Gannett affiliate if I want to. These are the people’s airwaves that Gannett uses under a license from the government. Gannett’s license (as far as I know) doesn’t include language that forbids viewers the right to watch or not watch Gannett’s commercials. Maybe Gannett has some kind of special license for its Washington Channel 9 that requires any viewer to sit through every single commercial interruption whether or not that viewer has access to a “skip” button, but I seriously doubt it. I know this wonderful programming that Gannett refers to only exists to be interrupted by the commercials, but if I can get around those interruptions in my own home with my own recording device for my own personal use, Gannett should have no say about that one way or the other.

    Joli Francis says:

    October 5, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    The issue is not that you don’t have a right to skip commercials or watch whatever you want – you absolutely do. The issue is that carriers, such as Dish, agree in retransmission contracts to not alter the programming in any way. Whether Dish does the commercial skipping or Dish provides the commercial skipping device, helps the customer hook it up and tells the customer exactly how and when to use it, Dish is equally guilty of altering the retransmitted programming. You certainly can buy and use whatever advertisement skipping device is available from a truly independent unaffiliated source but carriers such as Dish who are permitted to retransmit broadcast programming and have agreed to not alter that programming absolutely cannot be involved in advertisement skipping or hopping in any way, including offering the means to do so.

Kent Replogle says:

October 5, 2012 at 4:00 pm

you just don’t get it! If you like the programming you are watching and skip the commercials that programing will no longer exist. What do you think help pays for it. IF you enjoy HBO without any commercials and would like the same from Gannett then just send them a check every month for a subscription. In essence that is what you are paying for with HBO. why does everyone feel thye are “entitled” to get everything they want no matter the consequence. you must be an Obama supporter.

    Debbie Green says:

    October 5, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Ignoring the “Obama Supporter” line…

    I have to agree with the simple statement that entertainment in general is paid for by the person consuming the entertainment. Subscriptions for “commercial free / premium” programming, subsidies for “non-commercial” programming and a combination of subscriptions (cable access fees) and advertiser support for most of the rest. If a substantial segment skips the commercials, then advertisers will reduce their support, and either the content goes away, or the cable fees rise.

    Movies, concerts, theaters, museums, etc have ticket prices. Either pay or don’t reap the benefits.

    What Gannet is trying to do (along with all other commercial programmers) is to avoid having to increase the cable access fees they negotiate with carriers by providing advertisers with a reason to support the programming.

Jay Miller says:

October 5, 2012 at 4:18 pm

Our group went through this a few months ago. Dish is as immoral as they get in business!!

Bill Greep says:

October 5, 2012 at 4:37 pm

Titanic… well said. I keep saying the same thing to these people who do not understand that they SHOULD be rooting for the broadcasters before EVERYTHING is a subscription service and their monthly entertainment bills will be 500% higher than they are now. In its simplest form, people don’t make shows for free, shoot them for free or distribute them for free. People need to get paid. If you want a commercial free program, you will pay for it one way or another. And the alternative to broadcasters is significantly more than the paltry extra quarter they are asking for from DISH. Same goes for radio… you want commercial free radio… then quit complaining that you’re XM bill rises and you just added another $250/yr to listen to music. There is a problem with retransmission fees and it’s called ESPN who will soon be pushing $7/sub which is crazy. That is what people should be focusing on… They just don’t realize that the broadcasters are a fifth of that kind of number.

Jeff Groves says:

October 5, 2012 at 4:43 pm

In my area, Cable Subscription fees have risen almost 1500% since 1980

Jeff Groves says:

October 5, 2012 at 4:49 pm

High Subscription fees along with Low Quality TV Programming (That’s “Reality” Programming, along with Excessive advertising, both on and off screen for those of you in Rio Linda) are driving Pay-TV subscribers AWAY. 2,500,000 have already “Cut the Cord” since 2010. Third Quarter results should be in in a few weeks, and I have a feeling they will show subscriber numbers continuing to head SOUTH.

Joanne McDonald says:

October 5, 2012 at 7:17 pm

Every Dish customer should be ashamed of both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett for this blackout that result in the viewers from being able to watch their favorite shows with Dish. I feel that both Gracia C. I urge all of the viewers with Dish to boycott both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett right now for making . Martore and Gannett are trying to be way too big being like the Wal-Mart’s, Neil Bogart’s of Casablanca Records fame of the 1970′s disco era, the Trinity Broadcasting Network’s, the David Smith (one of the Smith brothers from Sinclair Broadcast Group), the Harry Pappas as part of the Pappas Telecasting Companies, the Bernard Madoff’s, the Enron’s, the Worldcom’s, the Adelphia’s, the Tyco’s, and the Martha Stewart’s, of the 2000′s by letting broadcast greed get out of control so all of the head employees and bosses at Gannett to be able to enjoy carefree lavishly spending to support carefree lavishly lifestyles with luxurious homes, luxurious jets, luxurious cars, join luxurious clubs, go to luxurious hotels, go to luxurious casinos to do gambling, and have other luxurious items just to make them very happy then trying and willingness to improve the quality of all the stations they owned and control and making the viewers happy as well. I hope and I wish that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett get scolded by both by the ACA and the FCC for making the viewers being forced to deal with this blackout because they could not make a deal to get the stations back to it’s customers sooner and with a fair deal with Dish. I hope and I wish that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett is barred from buying and owning anymore TV stations in the future after their final decision to remove the stations from Dish. I feel that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett are trying to bribe like the General Tire/RKO General of the 1960′s and 1970′s by not being very honest of not only the viewers by making them miss the shows on Dish and also on themselves. I hope and I wish that the FCC would force both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett to allow Dish to carry it’s stations without any interference, in the event both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett fails to allow Dish to carry it’s stations again, then the FCC would force both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett to allow Dish to import out of market stations that are very real close to the station being blacked out being affiliated with the same network, in the event both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett fails to allow Dish to import out of market stations that are very real close to the station being blacked out being affiliated with the same network, then the FCC would allow Dish to carry the out of market station with the same affiliation without any restrictions and also be allowed to continue to carry the out of market station that it’s digital television signal is reachable by a outdoor antenna including both it’s SD and HD feeds on the Dish satellite service system even after the dispute is over without any interference for 12 whole years to meet FCC rules and regulators. I would gladly love to see that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett to surrender, give up, and forfeit control of all the stations they owned and then the FCC would allow all the broadcasters be allowed to purchased any of the stations both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett owns and control with the broadcasters being required to make a real big concession that they would promised not to have any difficulties with all the cable and satellite operators when making deals to carry stations without any interference for 12 whole years. I wouldn’t mind me wanting either Belo, Hearst, Local TV LLC, or even Raycom buying and owning any Gannett station. I feel that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett are way too big being way too busy being the Carly Rae Jepsen Call Me Maybe, Rebecca Black Friday, Double Take Hot Problems and Guns N Roses Axl Rose as well as trying be act like the Lyle and Erik Menendez’s as the greedy murderers, the Jeffrey Ireland’s, Patrick Jones’s, and the Lindsay Lohan’s as the drunks, the Rodney Dangerfield’s, the John Belushi’s, and the Chris Farley’s as the comedians, the John Robert Ewing’s and the Cliff Barnes’s, the Charles Montgomery Burn’s, the Homer and Bart Simpson’s, the Peter Griffin’s, the Garfield cats, the Cookie Monster’s, the Miss Piggy’s, the Victor Newman’s of the broadcasting industry of not coming to reach a deal with Dish to carry it’s stations to the viewers everyday. I feel that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett are trying to turn into the 1919 Chicago White Sox’s baseball team and the Southern Methodist University football of the 1980′s to force Dish to accept a take it or leave it deal to carry it’s stations the Dish viewers suffer from being able to watch their favorite shows.

The affected TV viewers with Dish could try the DTV Green dish antenna system to pick up the affected stations that are owned and maintained by Gracia C. Martore and Gannett:
http://www.dtvgreendish.com/

Joanne McDonald says:

October 5, 2012 at 8:27 pm

Every Dish customer should be ashamed of both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett for this blackout that result in the viewers from being able to watch their favorite shows with Dish. I feel that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett are trying to be way too big being like the Wal-Mart’s, Neil Bogart’s of Casablanca Records fame of the 1970′s disco era, the Trinity Broadcasting Network’s, the David Smith (one of the Smith brothers from Sinclair Broadcast Group), the Harry Pappas as part of the Pappas Telecasting Companies, the Bernard Madoff’s, the Enron’s, the Worldcom’s, the Adelphia’s, the Tyco’s, and the Martha Stewart’s, of the 2000′s by letting broadcast greed get out of control so all of the head employees and bosses at Gannett to be able to enjoy carefree lavishly spending to support carefree lavishly lifestyles with luxurious homes, luxurious jets, luxurious cars, join luxurious clubs, go to luxurious hotels, go to luxurious casinos to do gambling, and have other luxurious items just to make them very happy then trying and willingness to improve the quality of all the stations they owned and control and making the viewers happy as well. I hope and I wish that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett get scolded by both by the ACA and the FCC for making the viewers being forced to deal with this blackout because they could not make a deal to get the stations back to it’s customers sooner and with a fair deal with Dish. I hope and I wish that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett is barred from buying and owning anymore TV stations in the future after their final decision to remove the stations from Dish. I feel that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett are trying to bribe like the General Tire/RKO General of the 1960′s and 1970′s by not being very honest of not only the viewers by making them miss the shows on Dish and also on themselves. I hope and I wish that the FCC would force both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett to allow Dish to carry it’s stations without any interference, in the event both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett fails to allow Dish to carry it’s stations again, then the FCC would force both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett to allow Dish to import out of market stations that are very real close to the station being blacked out being affiliated with the same network, in the event both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett fails to allow Dish to import out of market stations that are very real close to the station being blacked out being affiliated with the same network, then the FCC would allow Dish to carry the out of market station with the same affiliation without any restrictions and also be allowed to continue to carry the out of market station that it’s digital television signal is reachable by a outdoor antenna including both it’s SD and HD feeds on the Dish satellite service system even after the dispute is over without any interference for 12 whole years to meet FCC rules and regulators. I would gladly love to see that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett to surrender, give up, and forfeit control of all the stations they owned and then the FCC would allow all the broadcasters be allowed to purchased any of the stations both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett owns and control with the broadcasters being required to make a real big concession that they would promised not to have any difficulties with all the cable and satellite operators when making deals to carry stations without any interference for 12 whole years. I wouldn’t mind me wanting either Belo, Hearst, Local TV LLC, or even Raycom buying and owning any Gannett station. I feel that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett are way too big being way too busy being the Carly Rae Jepsen Call Me Maybe, Rebecca Black Friday, Double Take Hot Problems and Guns N Roses Axl Rose as well as trying be act like the Lyle and Erik Menendez’s as the greedy murderers, the Jeffrey Ireland’s, Patrick Jones’s, and the Lindsay Lohan’s as the drunks, the Rodney Dangerfield’s, the John Belushi’s, and the Chris Farley’s as the comedians, the John Robert Ewing’s and the Cliff Barnes’s, the Charles Montgomery Burn’s, the Homer and Bart Simpson’s, the Peter Griffin’s, the Garfield cats, the Cookie Monster’s, the Miss Piggy’s, the Victor Newman’s of the broadcasting industry of not coming to reach a deal with Dish to carry it’s stations to the viewers everyday. I feel that both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett are trying to turn into the 1919 Chicago White Sox’s baseball team and the Southern Methodist University football of the 1980′s to force Dish to accept a take it or leave it deal to carry it’s stations. I urge all of the viewers with Dish to boycott both Gracia C. Martore and Gannett right now for making the Dish viewers suffer from being able to watch their favorite shows.

The affected TV viewers with Dish could try the DTV Green dish antenna system to pick up the affected stations that are owned and maintained by Gracia C. Martore and Gannett:
http://www.dtvgreendish.com/


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