NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--
In a blow to its Spanish-speaking customers, DISH Network dropped most of Univision Communications’ networks and stations off its services indefinitely on Saturday, June 30, just before 7 p.m. EDT. The removal of the channels followed DISH’s rejection of an offer from Univision that would have extended the parties’ existing contract to allow renewal negotiations to continue without interrupting viewers’ access to Univision content.
Among the Top Networks in Any Language on DISH
The DISH blackout impacts Univision Network, the third most-popular network in any language among DISH subscribers, and its affiliated stations, as well as UniMás and its affiliated stations and Galavision, which are also highly rated channels for Spanish-speaking viewers. DISH also pulled seven Univision channels from its Sling TV streaming service—Univision, UniMás, Galavision, Univision Deportes Network (UDN), El Rey Network, TLNovelas and Foro TV. UDN is the second most-watched sports network on DISH. 
DISH’s refusal of an extension to continue providing its customers access to Univision’s Spanish-language and Hispanic-serving networks is puzzling given DISH’s extensive marketing to Hispanic consumers and its claims regarding the importance of Latinos to its services.
“Univision’s networks and stations play an outsized role in DISH’s success with Hispanic consumers, and our programming is some of the most popular, regardless of language, among DISH subscribers,” said Univision’s Jessica Herrera-Flanigan, Executive Vice President, Government & Corporate Affairs. “Despite the success of our programming with its customers, DISH insists on paying Univision only a fraction of what it pays our English-language peers, including some with far fewer viewers. They even dismissed Univision’s most recent proposal, which still asks for considerably less than our English-language peers are paid.”
Unwillingness to Extend
DISH’s blackout left its customers without the leading local, national and global news source for Hispanic America amid Mexico’s historic elections over the weekend. DISH also cut off access to Univision’s unmatched coverage of important immigration issues and the crisis at the Southern border.
“This blackout was unnecessary, and DISH’s refusal to consider a short-term extension is unacceptable,” Herrera-Flanigan added. “We offered an extension to ensure negotiations did not interfere with our service of the Hispanic communities that rely on critical news from Univision. DISH apparently did not share our concern and chose not to put its Hispanic customers first.”
DISH’s History of Blackouts
Herrera-Flanigan also pointed to DISH’s well-documented history of broadcast blackouts. Since 2010, DISH customers have lost access to broadcast programming 68 times, considerably more than any other TV distributor in the U.S. during that time period. 
More Soccer Than Any Other Network
“Since choosing a Univision blackout over continued carriage, DISH has tried to use the World Cup as an excuse for its actions, making incredulous suggestions that an event that happens for a few weeks every four years is what drives the value of Spanish-language programming,” Herrera-Flanigan said. “DISH knows very well that people are watching soccer on our networks year-round. It’s disappointing that DISH would try to discount both its customers’ passion for soccer and for UDN, the second most popular sports network on DISH, regardless of language. DISH’s refusal to carry Univision’s networks and stations leaves its customers at risk of missing more than 1,100 soccer matches annually.”
Univision remains focused on working with DISH to return its channels to DISH services ASAP. “We greatly value DISH’s customers and we appreciate carriage of our networks on DISH’s services,” Herrera-Flanigan said. “We are hopeful DISH will in turn demonstrate respect for Univision and Spanish-language viewers by re-commencing negotiations and joining with us, quickly and sincerely, to reach a mutual agreement that fairly values Univision programming in line with our English-language peers.”
 Nielsen, NPM, Calendar Year 2017, A18-49, Broadcast Prime M-Sa 8p-11p, Su7p-11p, Time Period based Live+S
 According to data from the American Television Alliance
About Univision Communications Inc.
Univision Communications Inc. (UCI) is the leading media company serving Hispanic America. The Company, a chief content creator in the U.S., includes Univision Network, one of the top networks in the U.S. regardless of language and the most-watched Spanish-language broadcast television network in the country, available in approximately 88% of U.S. Hispanic television households; UniMás, a leading Spanish-language broadcast television network available in approximately 82% of U.S. Hispanic television households; Univision Cable Networks, including Galavisión, the most-watched U.S. Spanish-language entertainment cable network, as well as UDN (Univision Deportes Network), the most-watched U.S. Spanish-language sports cable network, Univision tlnovelas, a 24-hour Spanish-language cable network dedicated to telenovelas, ForoTV, a 24-hour Spanish-language cable network dedicated to international news, and an additional suite of cable offerings - De Película, De Película Clásico, Bandamax, Ritmoson and Telehit; an investment in El Rey Network, a general entertainment English-language cable network; Univision Local Media, which owns and/or operates 63 television stations and 58 radio stations in major U.S. Hispanic markets and Puerto Rico; Univision Now, a direct-to-consumer, on demand and live streaming subscription service; Univision.com , the most-visited Spanish-language website among U.S. Hispanics; and Uforia, a music application featuring multimedia music content. The Company also includes assets that serve young, diverse audiences. This includes news and lifestyle English-language cable network FUSION TV and a collection of leading digital brands that span a range of categories: technology (Gizmodo), sports (Deadspin), lifestyle (Lifehacker), modern women’s interests (Jezebel), news and politics (Splinter), African American news and culture (The Root), gaming (Kotaku), Environment (Earther), and car culture (Jalopnik). Additionally, UCI has ownership in comedy and news satire brands The Onion, Clickhole, The A.V. Club and The Takeout. Headquartered in New York City, UCI has content creation facilities and sales offices in major cities throughout the United States. For more information, please visit corporate.univision.com .
Copyright Business Wire 2018