- Associated Press - Friday, October 1, 2010

NEW YORK (AP) - Dish Network says Fox is blocking access to 19 sports networks and other TV channels as it demands a rate increase of more than 50 percent from the satellite TV operator.

Dish Networks Corp. said Friday the rate increase Fox is asking for is “unprecedented.”

Dish says it will continue to negotiate with Fox to help restore sports programming and prevent rate increases. It says the talks don’t affect local Fox TV stations, Fox News or Fox Business News.

In the meantime, it says it will make the NFL Network, NBA TV, ESPN Classic and other pay channels available at no extra charge to those affected by the blackout.

Fox Networks is owned by News Corp. A representative for its Fox Sports unit could not immediately be reached for comment.

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