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CBS off the air for DirecTV, AT&T U-verse customers in dispute

NEW YORK (AP) — A business dispute took CBS off the air for millions of satellite television customers of DirecTV and AT&T U-verse on Saturday.

CBS was black on satellite systems owned by AT&T in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and at least 11 other large cities across the United States. Both the television network and AT&T hurled accusations at each other for failure to agree on what CBS is paid for programming.

CBS said that while it didn’t want its customers caught in the middle, it is determined to fight for fair value. The network warned that the loss of CBS programming “could last a long time.”

AT&T countered in a statement provided to Variety that CBS is “a repeat blackout offender” that has pulled its programming from other carriers before in order to get its way.

Other cities affected are Philadelphia, Dallas, San Francisco, Boston, Detroit, Minneapolis, Miami, Denver, Sacramento, Pittsburgh and Baltimore.

On its website, CBS posted a note:

“AT&T has dropped CBS-owned television stations from its customers’ channel lineups across DirecTV and AT&T U-verse TV systems in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas, San Francisco, Boston, Atlanta, Tampa, Seattle, Detroit, Minneapolis, Miami, Denver, Sacramento, Pittsburgh and Baltimore and 117 CBS stations and affiliates on DirecTV NOW.

CBS Sports Network has been dropped nationally from DirecTV and DirecTV NOW and Smithsonian Channel has similarly been removed from DirecTV.”

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