Boise television viewers can be forgiven for thinking the latest "sky is falling" announcement from KNIN-TV is a repeat. Every local affiliate of a major broadcast network has warned viewers of the possibility of going dark in the wake of broken negotiations with either a cable (CableOne) or satellite (DISH or DirecTV) carrier.
Last fall, KTVB-TV warned its viewers NBC programming might disappear if the station's relationship with DISH didn't improve—of course, they worked things out. In 2012, KBOI-TV said CBS programs would go away if an agreement with CableOne couldn't be ironed out—again, they inked a new deal. Now, it's the local FOX affiliate's turn with DISH.
"Most of the time, these negotiations are handled quickly and behind the scenes with no interruptions," Kathy Silk, KNIN general manager tells viewers in a taped message. "Unfortunately, to date, we have been unable to reach an agreement [with DISH]. You could lose our station."
Silk tells viewers they risk losing the new fall TV season, the World Series and NFL football. She also fires a shot across DISH's bow, saying, "You always have choices through our free, over-the-air signal and other providers [DirecTV or CableOne]."
Things are a less friendly in the KNIN versus DISH match. DISH has recently begun suing affiliates for what it calls "Dump DISH" tactics, arguing that "DISH's goodwill as a reliable service provider is eroded."
We'll keep you updated.