AT&T lashed out at CBS’s handling of its CBS All Access digital subscription service as the two companies approach a deadline in their carriage dispute.
“The telecom giant is accusing the broadcaster of trying to ‘up-sell’ customers to subscription streaming service CBS All Access,” Deadline reports. The report notes that the current contract between CBS stations in more than a dozen markets, including New York and Los Angeles, and AT&T-owned satellite giant DirecTV, DirecTV Now and U-verse cable systems expires Friday at 11 p.m. PT.
“In a lengthy statement Friday morning, AT&T said it has ‘offered to pay CBS an unprecedented rate increase and the highest fee we currently pay to any major broadcast network group. CBS has refused,'” Deadline reports. “In addition, the company said its request to be allowed to sell CBS All Access, in the way that Amazon, Roku and Apple do, was denied.”
In its statement, AT&T said: “The reason for CBS’ refusal is because CBS and other companies that own local CBS affiliates — such as Nexstar, Tribune and Sinclair — want to limit customers’ choices so broadcasters can keep using blackouts to cut off consumer access and inflate their fees. Either way, consumers lose.”
AT&T adds that “CBS is intent on blacking out any home that chooses to receive cable or satellite service to up-sell CBS All Access subscriptions.”