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Versus Fights DirecTV Over Carriage Fees

  • Variety, Tuesday, August 25, 2009 10 PM

Comcast-owned sports cable network Versus may be off DirecTV as of Sept. 1 due to a conflict over an increase in carriage fees. Versus earns about 18¢ per subscriber and is asking for more, per SNL Kagan.

Versus is available in 75 million homes, up from 62 million three years ago and has made strides recently with the NHL playoffs and Tour de France. The network, which rebranded from Outdoor Life Network in 2006, carries college football and has three games featuring top-20 teams set for September. It also carries five Pac-10 games and a handful of Big 12 and Mountain West contests. Viewership is up 134% in the 18-49 demo from a year ago.

"We are offering DirecTV the ability to carry Versus the same way it does today at the market price for the network. We continue to talk and are hopeful that we will reach an agreement," says Versus. Customers of the Versus on DirecTV are currently seeing a crawl saying the channel may no longer be available beginning next Tuesday.



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