Versus restored on DirecTV

Carriers reach agreement after blackout

One of the longest blackouts over a carriage dispute is over: Sports channel Versus has been restored on DirecTV after the satellite provider and Versus' parent, Comcast, reached an agreement.

Versus will return to the same DirecTV programming packages it was on before it was pulled at midnight Sept. 1.

"We are pleased that both sides were able to work out a satisfactory deal to bring this programming back to our customers," said Derek Chang, executive vp content strategy and development for DirecTV. Added Versus president Jamie Davis, "We're excited that we were able to come to a fair agreement that puts Versus back in millions of homes with DirecTV."

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Versus, best known for its NHL season and UFC event coverage, was taken down after DirecTV and Comcast failed to reach a new carriage agreement.

Back then, DirecTV accused Comcast of looking for a 20% fee hike "for what is basically a paid programming and infomercial channel with occasional sporting events of interest" and called the demand "simply piggish."

The fee Versus charged cable operators back then was estimated to be on average 18 cents per subscriber per month.

In its response, Versus said it "offered DirecTV a fair and reasonable offer to carry the network at the market price" and launched a national newspaper ad campaign against the blackout.
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