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Hardball: Fox Threatens to Drop Some Affiliate Stations if They Refuse to Share the Amount Fox Wants From the Money the Stations Get in Retrans Fees

Feb 9, 2011  •  Post A Comment

Fox is threatening to drop some affiliates if the local stations refuse to share what Fox wants them to share out of the monies the stations get in retrans fees, Bloomberg reports.

In a Feb. 4 letter, Michael C. Hopkins, president of affiliate sales and marketing for Fox, wrote to station owners that Fox “will have to pursue different distribution channels to receive fair value for our programming and continue to serve our viewers."

Fox said it would look to have direct talks with station owners after it’s "made no progress" following nine months of discussions with the affiliates’ board, the story says.

The story adds, "Fox is demanding a share of so-called retransmission fees that stations are starting to receive from cable and satellite-TV systems for access to local signals."

In a Jan. 28 letter to members, the affiliates’ negotiating committee said that Fox "summarily rejected" several proposals to share revenue over the next 10 years, and that Fox’s offer is "substantially worse" than what NBC, CBS and ABC are proposing.

A Fox spokesman said its negotiations with affiliates are private as are its discussions with the stations.

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