UPDATE: DISH reportedly has agreed to keep The Weather Channel on while the two sides continue to negotiate.
PREVIOUS: DISH Network threatened to drop The Weather Channel at midnight tonight over a carriage fee dispute. The satellite provider plans to launch its own weather-centered channel, Weather Cast.
“Despite negotiations over the past several months, DISH has chosen to be the first distributor to drop The Weather Channel rather than pay the standard industry rates others in the industry have already agreed to pay,” Weather Channel said in a statement Thursday and encouraged its viewers in the 14 million DISH homes to switch to rival satcaster DirecTV or a cable company.
DISH, meanwhile has bulked at the fee increase sought by Weather Channel, said to be in the 10% range, citing the channel’s venture into entertainment content, including movies, and its inability to provide local weather information for satellite viewers.