- The Washington Times - Monday, December 22, 2014

Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network were pulled from Dish Network’s lineup in the face of failing contract negotiations, and now cable executives are appealing to fans to jump ship and join another provider.

Dish chiefs said the channels went dark after Fox tried to hike fees on sports and other channels that weren’t even included in original contract negotiations, CNET reported.

“It’s like we’re about to close on a house and the Realtor is trying to make us buy a new car as well,” said Warren Schlichting, the senior vice president of programming for Dish, CNET reported. “Fox blacked out two of its news channels, using them as leverage to triple rates on sports and entertainment channels that are not in this contract.”

Dish also said that it tried to keep the channels up and running with a short-term contract extension.

Fox, meanwhile, blamed Dish for the disconnection and said the company was simply trying to “intimidate and sway our negotiations,” CNET reported.

“It is unfortunate that the millions of Fox News viewers on Dish were used as pawns by their provider,” said Tim Carry, executive vice president of distribution at Fox News Channel, CNET reported. “Hopefully, [viewers] will vote with their hard-earned money and seek another one of our other valued distributors immediately.”

Dish has experienced other contract-fueled blackouts in recent months involving CNN and Turner Classic Movies. In October, 14 million Dish subscribers lost access to those two channels over a contract dispute that lasted about a month, CNET reported.

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