Dish Network Asks FCC To Mediate Retrans Dispute With Media General

This is how Dish Network welcomes back the FCC following the federal shutdown? The satellite company filed a complaint today alleging that Media General has failed to engage in “good faith” negotiations to end the retransmission dispute that on October 1 resulted in its 18 network affiliated stations going dark on Dish. Among other things, the complaint says, “Media General failed to respond for 11 days to Dish’s last pre-blackout offer.” The satellite company wants commissioners to “push them back to the negotiating table and submit to mediation to get programming back to consumers.” Media General says it’s still reviewing the complaint and then “will respond appropriately.” Dish has said that it wanted to wait until Media General completed its merger with Young Broadcasting, which has a carriage agreement with the satellite company. “The only reason for Media General to reject that offer is to try to squeeze consumers for more money, to the tune of five times what Dish currently pays,” it said last month. The broadcaster countered that it wants to be “fairly compensated for our programming – what we seek amounts to pennies a day per subscriber.” The dispute affects nearly 13% of the 9M homes Media General reaches.

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