DISH Network Carriage Agreement With Fisher
Communications, Inc. Expires
Thursday December 18, 2008 - 15:39 PM EST
Source: Marketwire News Releases
Author: Fisher Communications, Inc.
Click here to read the original story
SEATTLE, WA -- (Marketwire) -- 12/18/08 -- DISH Network's satellite carriage agreement with Fisher
Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: FSCI) expired on December 17, 2008, immediately leaving DISH
customers in 7 media markets without the ability to receive Fisher's programming. Stations no longer
available to DISH customers are: KOMO and KUNS in Seattle, KIMA and KUNW in Yakima, KATU in
Portland, KVAL in Eugene, KBCI in Boise, KIDK in Idaho Falls, and KBAK and KBFX in Bakersfield.
"Despite Fisher's good-faith efforts to negotiate a new agreement, we were unable to reach acceptable terms to
ensure that DISH provides us fair compensation for the value they receive from broadcasting our stations,
which have leading positions in their markets and consistently deliver highly viewed news and programming,"
said Rob Dunlop, Fisher's Senior Vice President of Operations. "Our signal remains available over the public
airwaves and through other service providers such as cable or DIRECTV. We regret any inconvenience DISH
Network viewers may experience as they look for other options in order to watch our stations."
In light of the inclement weather impacting much of the Pacific Northwest and concerns about public safety,
Fisher attempted to extend the expiration of the current agreement until Monday, December 22 to ensure that
DISH customers in the region could continue to receive news and weather updates. However, DISH rejected
the Company's proposal.
Separately, Fisher announced that it has filed a $1 million breach of contract lawsuit over DISH's failure to
comply with the terms of the prior carriage agreement. The lawsuit was filed earlier today in federal district
court in Oregon.
Fisher claims that DISH violated the terms of the carriage agreement when it failed to retransmit KUNP-TV's
signal from July 2006, when Fisher acquired the station, until April 30, 2008. In addition, DISH has not paid
Fisher any carriage fees for KUNP, as specified in the prior agreement.
In its complaint, Fisher also said that DISH breached the prior carriage agreement when it failed to pay Fisher
in full for broadcasting KBAK and KBFX on its system. On January 1, 2008, Fisher acquired the two stations
from Westwind Communications. While DISH has acknowledged that it has underpaid Fisher during that time
period, it has not submitted proper payments to the Company.
About Fisher Communications
Fisher Communications, Inc. is a Seattle-based communications company that owns and operates 13 full
power television stations (including a 50%-owned television station), 7 low power television stations and 8
radio stations in the Western United States. The Company owns and operates Fisher Pathways, a satellite and
fiber transmission provider; Fisher Plaza, a media, telecommunications, and data center facility located near
downtown Seattle; and Pegasus News, an online start-up and hyper-local media pioneer based in Dallas. For
more information about Fisher Communications, Inc., go to www.fsci.com.
Sard Verbinnen & Co
Paul Kranhold or Ron Low
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