A tense standoff between Univision Communications and Charter Communications caused Charter-Spectrum’s millions of homes to abruptly drop Univision this morning, The Los Angeles Times reports.
“Late Tuesday, Univision said Charter no longer had legal authorization to distribute its channels — Univision, UniMas, Galavision and the Univision Deportes Network — and that the cable operator was told to drop the channels from its lineup,” The Times reports. “In some cases, it took several hours for Univision’s channels to be removed from Charter’s system.”
In the L.A. market, the Univision dump affects more than 1.6 million homes, the paper notes.
Charter appeared to be pushing to keep the lights on late Tuesday when it said in a statement: “We have a contract with Univision and we expect them to honor it.”
The Times adds: “Univision’s dramatic move — after months of on-again, off-again negotiations — comes as Charter and other pay-TV operators are struggling to hold the line on programming costs. It follows a lawsuit that Univision, based in New York, filed against Charter in July 2016.
“Univision alleged in its suit that the cable operator was illegally trying to adopt the fee structure of Time Warner Cable, which Charter acquired last spring. Charter has also faced legal action from Fox News and Showtime Networks.”