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Disney and Charter Reach Historic Agreement, Resolving Dispute and Restoring ESPN, ABC to 15 Million Households
Disney and Charter Communications have reached an agreement to restore ESPN and ABC to the homes of approximately 15 million households across the country. The multi-year agreement, which was announced on Monday, November 9, 2023, had been under negotiations for months.
At the heart of the dispute between the two companies was the issue of streaming rights, with Charter seeking to offer its customers streaming services for the networks Disney owns or controls like ESPN and ABC. Disney had previously stated that any agreement would need to include such rights.
The agreement announced on Monday allows Charter to offer its customers expanded streaming services for its networks, including ESPN and ABC. Charter customers will have access to ABC on the streaming app ABC.com, while ESPN will be available on the streaming platform ESPN3.
The agreement also includes provisions for multiple local ABC affiliates to be carried on Charter’s cable systems, including in six of the largest markets including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco and Seattle. These markets represent over 70% of all U.S. households.
The deal is also expected to include a rate discount on ESPN for Charter customers, though the specific terms of the discount have not been disclosed.
The agreement between Disney and Charter allows millions of households in the U.S. to once again access ESPN and ABC programming. The dispute between the two companies had caused disruption to both cable and streaming customers in recent months. The terms of the agreement also set a precedent for streaming rights that could be adopted by other cable and satellite providers in the future.On November 9, 2021, after weeks of intense negotiations between Disney and Charter Communications, a deal was reached that allowed Charter to bring ESPN and ABC to an estimated 15 million households. The agreement ended a dispute that had lasted since the end of 2019.
The dispute began when Disney and Charter failed to agree to terms for a new programming agreement. This led Disney to pull its ESPN and ABC channels from Charter’s cable TV and streaming services for more than 18 months.
The new deal includes a multi-year agreement that allows Charter to restore ESPN, ABC, and the Disney Channel to millions of its customers who had been without the networks since the dispute began. In addition, the agreement allows Charter to add the Disney+ streaming service to its lineup, giving its customers access to thousands of hours of Disney content.
The agreement between Disney and Charter will be beneficial for both companies. For Disney, it means an estimated 1.5 million households will be added to its already large base of cable and streaming subscribers. For Charter, it means being able to offer its customers access to some of the most popular networks and content in television and streaming, which in turn could help it to attract new subscribers and retain existing ones.
Finally, the agreement also means that Disney and Charter will have a better relationship going forward, which could lead to more deals and opportunities for both companies in the future.
With the Disney-Charter dispute finally resolved, millions of households can now enjoy watching ESPN, ABC, and the Disney Channel, as well as the vast library of content available on Disney+. It is a win-win for both companies and an exciting development for fans of Disney’s popular content.Disney and Charter Communications announced a deal on November 9, 2023 that will restore ESPN and ABC programming to 15 million households. The deal ends a dispute between the two that had resulted in a blackout of the networks to Charter customers since late October.
The multiyear agreement will allow Charter customers to access Disney networks through the company’s streaming services, including Spectrum TV Choice and Spectrum TV Stream.
In the agreement, Charter agrees to pay Disney a fee for carrying the networks, allowing the company to recoup some of the lost viewers.
Disney’s networks were removed from Charter’s lineup when the companies were unable to reach an agreement on fees for carrying the channels. Disputes like this are not uncommon in the television industry, as networks and providers haggle over terms. Such disputes can sometimes stretch on for months before an agreement is reached.
The blackout caused frustration for customers, who were unable to watch their favorite sports or programs. Disney had also planned to add a streaming service later this year, which would have been unavailable to Charter customers if the blackout had continued.
The agreement between Disney and Charter resolves the blackout, allowing customers to continue to enjoy their favorite programming. The two companies had not previously revealed the terms of the agreement, but Charter CEO Tom Rutledge stated that, “This agreement reflects the value and quality of our respective programs and services.”
The agreement allows Disney to get its networks back into Charter’s lineup and continues the relationship between the two companies, ensuring that customers can continue to access the content they love.