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Deal reached to restore TEGNA stations to DirecTV, AT&T U-Verse

The logos of TEGNA and AT&T's DirecTV.
(Logos: TEGNA/AT&T, Graphic by The Desk)

Local TV company TEGNA has reached an agreement with AT&T to restore five dozen broadcast stations on DirecTV and AT&T U-Verse.

TEGNA’s channels in 51 regional television markets have been unavailable to DirecTV and U-Verse customers since December 1 when a temporary agreement to keep the channels on those platforms expired with no new deal in place.

Terms of the deal reached on Sunday were not disclosed.

The agreement resolves an issue in which some DirecTV and U-Verse customers in markets where TEGNA owns the local CBS or NBC station were unable to watch live telecasts of National Football League games without using an alternate service.

During the dispute, AT&T directed customers to use Locast, a not-for-profit streaming service that offers streaming access to local TV stations in two dozen markets for free.

In dueling statements, AT&T accused TEGNA of demanding the “largest rate increase ever” for the right to carry the local stations, while TEGNA argued it was simply asking for fair compensation under terms that were similar to other deals it had reached with competing pay TV providers.

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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).