A whole host of Fox Regional Networks are no longer available through Sling TV. This not only affects subscribers to the live TV streaming service, but also Dish satellite customer in equal measure.
The RSN blackout came into effect at 9AM PT today (Friday, July 26) and at present it is unclear as to when it will end, or even if it will end.
Depending on who you ask will determine the answer you get as to who is to blame. The various Fox RSNs clearly state Dish and Sling have opted to drop the channels, while Sling TV has stated it was the choice of the channel owner.
Regardless of blame, the issue revolves around the inability for new terms to be agreed. The deal that was in place technically ended on Monday although a last-minute stay of execution until today had been applied in the hope the two sides would be able to iron out a deal and get it over the line before today. Evidently that has proven to not be the case and as a result the nationwide channel blackout has now taken affect.
It is understood the blackout affects Fox Sports regional viewers in Arizona, North and South Carolina, Detroit, Florida, Indiana, Kansas City, New Orleans, Ohio, Oklahoma, San Diego, Tennessee, and Wisconsin. This is in addition to Fox Sports North, South, West, Midwest, as well as Fox Sports Sun, Fox Sports Prime Ticket and YES Network.
In its collective response, the various Fox RSNs state that they had offered to keep terms as they were, to basically extend the arrangement that was already in place, but the offer was rejected by Dish and Sling.
Since the announcements went live across social media, both sides have followed up with very different approaches to the situation. The various RSNs are all directing affected customers to the keepmyhometeams.com where it explains the issue from the Fox Sports perspective while also actively encouraging users to “find another provider” to regain local sports channel access.
In contrast, Sling TV has taken more of a ‘hold on’ approach as it is publicly making it clear it is fighting “to bring these channels back at the same great value you expect.”
Any Sling TV user who is considering switching providers will want to be aware that this is not an isolated incident and that in switching a user may find they lose access to other channels due to similar disputes. For example, DIRECTV is AT&T’s alternative to Dish and DIRECTV NOW is its streaming-based equivalent to Sling TV. Both the DIRECTV services still have access to the Fox RSNs however, DIRECTV and DIRECTV NOW are currently engaged a dispute with Nexstar over access to various locals. In addition, both DIRECTV and DIRECTV NOW are also currently caught up in a separate dispute with CBS.
Due to these AT&T-related disputes, CBS-owned channels as well as a variety of local affiliates are currently blacked out for a number of DIRECTV (and U-verse) customers, while all DIRECTV NOW subscribers have lost access to these channels including CBS.