The popular Spanish broadcaster, Univision, has been locked in a dispute with DISH Network for months now, leaving many DISH Network customers extremely disgruntled. Unfortunately, it looks like the remaining Univision fans who are currently DISH customers, may have to look somewhere else for their Univision content indefinitely.
The problem comes down to Univision believing that DISH Network does not understand the value of its hispanic subscribers, and as a result is not paying Univision what they deem to be fair compensation. Whether this is true is impossible to know from an outside perspective, but we do know that Univision fans make up roughly a million of DISH Network’s subscribers. Of that million, an estimated 200,000 to 300,000 have already left.
This situation has been ongoing for so long, that DISH CEO Charlie Ergen had to weigh in during DISH’s third-quarter earnings call. According to Ergen, this Univision dispute was almost certainly a major factor in the 367,000 customers that DISH lost that quarter. Unfortunately, DISH has become so entrenched in their position on this, according to Ergen, that they would risk a major backlash from their remaining customers if they changed their position now.
According to deadline.com, Univision CEO Vince Sadusky said spoke about DISH Network when asked for an update, saying that “Conversations have been ongoing…but we’ve been really challenged…it’s all about economics. It’s very odd that they’ve been unwilling to recognize the power of the Hispanic audience. It’s really strange. Normally, these conversations are challenging … but their position has been bizarre.”.
DISH Network has been having major issues with some of their channel partners recently. Univision is of course the most prominent and ongoing, but recently HBO entered a blackout for DISH Network’s customers as well. Of course, given the popularity of HBO’s content and the upcoming final season of the Game of Thrones, it is unlikely that the HBO blackout is permanent.
As far as Univision is concerned? This issue has gone on long enough, and given the stern tone of these most recent comments by both sides, it seems likely that this Univision blackout is permanent for DISH Network customers. If you are a Univision fan, it’s time to start looking outside of DISH Network for that content.