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Cox Media, AT&T reach Super Bowl compromise

Cox Media Group and telecom giant AT&T reached a last-minute deal on Sunday to restore dozens of local broadcast stations, including some CBS affiliates that were slated to air the Super Bowl.

The deal ends yet another carriage dispute that is becoming common in the pay television space and is one of the primary reasons for an increase in customer bills.

As is also typical, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The dispute started late last month when some Cox Media-owned local stations began warning viewers of an impending blackout of its local stations on AT&T-owned systems, including streaming service AT&T TV and satellite service DirecTV.

In notices published on local websites, Cox Media wrongly asserted that AT&T was the only one who could remove its stations if a new deal was not reached. Cox also falsely said it was required by law to seek re-transmission agreements with companies like AT&T.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).