YouTube TV subscribers are about to lose access to some sports networks when a months-long extension expires next month. The issue is between YouTube and Sinclair and their apparent inability to agree on terms for a new contract. As a result, YouTube TV was facing a loss of FOX Regional Sports Networks back in February, but a last-minute extension prevented that from happening. That same extension will expire on October 1 and there’s still no deal to report.
Sinclair Broadcasting Group is one of the companies behind Diamond Sports Group, which is itself the company that owns FOX Regional Sports Networks. As the name indicates, the FOX RSNs offer access to sports games for different regions around the United States; some networks are for individual states, while other networks are for entire regions, including FOX Sports Midwest and Southwest.
Quite obviously, the regional networks make it possible for subscribers to watch their local teams, which is why the loss of the stations is particularly bothersome for sports fans. YouTube TV avoided the loss of these networks earlier this year when it and Sinclair penned an extension, but now the company warns that it doesn’t have a deal in place for when the extension expires on October 1.
The company explained the change in a few long tweets today, stating that while it is a ‘difficult decision’ to lose the FOX Regional Sports Networks, the change is nonetheless inbound. On October 1, users can expect to find the FOX RSN content they have saved disappear from their libraries; the channels will likewise no longer be available to stream.
Now that the warning has been made, it is possible we’ll see a very last-minute change in plans — these sort of negotiations tend to come to a positive resolution down to the wire. However, that’s not always the case and sometimes the two parties ultimately fail to reconcile their disagreement, leaving consumers to turn elsewhere for their content needs.