Dish Network subscribers who live in the markets with one of Hoak Media’s 14 TV stations can see its programming again after a week-long black out. The companies settled their dispute, which Dish said followed Hoak’s demand for a 200% fee increase and for the satellite company to stop offering the new AutoHop feature on its DVRs. Broadcasters are suing Dish over the technology which enables users to automatically skip past ads in recorded shows from the major networks. Although the companies aren’t disclosing settlement terms, Dish sure makes it sound like the little known company caved. Dish is keeping the AutoHop in Hoak’s markets. “Dish will not entertain negotiations that tie AutoHop to local retransmission fees,” a spokesman says. Dish SVP of Programming Dave Shull also says that Dish will continue to offer “the best channel choices at the lowest everyday prices in the industry.” Meanwhile the American Television Alliance — a coalition of cable and satellite companies and activist groups that oppose re-transmission consent black outs — blasted Hoak’s “greed.” The Dallas-based company’s “latest stunt blocked programming of the Stanley Cup Finals and Belmont Stakes,” ATVA says. “Until Congress and the FCC reform retransmission consent rules, broadcasters will continue their games of dragging consumers into business negotiations.” Hoak’s stations are mostly in the mid-west and south.
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