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Dish Network suffers widespread website, TV outage on weekend

A customer support portal and the Dish Anywhere app appeared to suffer from an unknown technical issue.

A customer support portal and the Dish Anywhere app appeared to suffer from an unknown technical issue.

A screen capture shows an attempt to log in to the website of Dish Network, which was offline Saturday morning. (Courtesy photo)
A screen capture shows an attempt to log in to the website of Dish Network, which was offline Saturday morning. (Courtesy photo)

Update, October 8: Dish Network’s customer support portal and the Dish Anywhere app were working once again as of Sunday morning. The company has not yet provided an explanation for the outage, and some customers said they were still having trouble using their Dish credentials to log in to third party apps like Pac-12 Now. We’ll update this story as we get more information. The original story as it appeared on Saturday follows below…

Satellite broadcaster Dish Network is suffering from an apparent technical issue that has some of its television service and parts of its website unavailable to paying customers.

The issues started early Saturday morning when customers tried to use their TV credentials to log in to the Dish Anywhere app, which offers streaming versions of channels available in a subscriber’s package.

According to numerous customers who reached out to The Desk, the Dish Anywhere app refused to authenticate user credentials, with a brief message telling subscribers that the “system is currently unavailable” and urging them to “try again later.”

Subsequently, Dish customers say they’ve experienced problems logging in to the Dish Network website to pay their bills, contact customer service and change their programming packages, with a similar message telling customers that the portal isn’t available and that they should try again later.

The web-related outage was confirmed by the website Down Detector, which tracks service disruptions across web platforms and services. Outage reports spiked around 12:30 p.m. Eastern Time (9:30 a.m. Pacific Time), around the time various college football games were set to start on sports channels available through Dish.

Dish has not publicly addressed the outage or responded to numerous customer complaints posted on social media. The precise reasons for the outage remain unknown. Dish satellite TV service and its online-only sister product, Sling TV, did not appear to be affected as of Saturday afternoon.

It is at least the second time this year that Dish customers have been unable to access their online billing portal to reach customer support or pay for their service. Earlier this year, a crippling cyberattack impacted internal systems used by Dish for customer support-related matters. The attack also saw thousands of employee and contractor records allegedly pilfered by cyber thieves, who held some of Dish’s systems for ransom.

Meanwhile, streaming television service Vidgo entered its second week of a prolonged outage that has left customers of its pay television service unable to access more than 70 channels. Vidgo blamed the issue on a business-related dispute involving a third-party technology provider, who allegedly tried to raise their fees on Vidgo and subsequently pulled their support from the platform.

Like Dish, Vidgo offers access to general entertainment, news and sports channels that can be difficult to find on other services, including college sports programming and right-of-center news channels. Vidgo offered bill credits and extended discounts to affected customers, and directed them to use standalone TV network apps to watch live programming with their Vidgo credentials.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is an award-winning journalist with more than 10 years of experience covering the business of television and radio broadcasting, streaming services and the overall media industry. In addition to his work as publisher of The Desk, Matthew contributes regularly to StreamTV Insider and KnowTechie, and has worked for several well-known news organizations, including Thomson Reuters, McNaughton Newspapers, Grasswire, Comstock's magazine, KTXL-TV and KGO-TV. Matthew is a member of IRE, a trade organization for investigative reporters and editors, and is based in Northern California.

Email: [email protected] | Signal: 530-507-8380