Dish Network and CBS stay in talks to avoid blackout

Dish Network was set to have a CBS blackout at 7PM ET yesterday night if a last-minute solution to an ongoing dispute wasn't settled. Under that blackout, subscribers in 14 cities would have seen CBS stations go dark until an agreement was in place — something that recently happened with Turner Broadcasting until a temporary deal could be struck. Those using Dish Network know the channels remained past the deadline, and the reason is a decision to continue with negotiations.

CBS has bragging rights as the #1 television network in the United States, and after six months of negotiations over a new carriage contract, the network threatened to take its stations down in 14 markets — something that would have likely hit Dish hard, as many customers had vowed to cancel their accounts if CBS went dark.

According to CBS, two extensions had already been given to keep the channels up through the Thanksgiving holiday. No other extensions would be given, the company had said. Now both CBS and Dish have been in negotiations nearly 24/7 since the threat was made, says the LA Times, and that might mean an agreement is nearing.

It is being reported CBS is seeking higher fees under the new contract, and for its part Dish Network is looking to avoid customer loss over a blackout. As a result, both are eager to settle the matter. Both CBS and Dish Network have confirmed that negotiations are continuing, but nothing beyond that.