AT&T loses Univision channels from U-verse in pricing dispute

Supposedly, Univision wants an 'outrageous' price hike to stay onboard.

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Jon Fingas
March 7th, 2016
Rodrigo Varela/Getty Images For Univison Communications
Rodrigo Varela/Getty Images For Univison Communications

There have certainly been some fierce disputes between TV providers and their networks in recent years, but few are quite so ugly as the one erupting between AT&T and Univision. AT&T has lost Univision's channels from its U-verse TV service after the Hispanic-oriented network pushed for higher carriage fees that it says would match those of its English-language peers, failing to resolve a contract dispute in the process. AT&T uses polarizing language to describe the spat, claiming that Univision is trying to "extort an outrageous price increase." However, Univision is even harsher: it's accusing AT&T of "redlining," or purposefully denying service and fair treatment along ethnic lines.

AT&T denies those accusations, pointing out that it carries 78 Spanish-language stations. True or not, it's clear that the companies aren't about to find common ground any time soon. They're still in that early phase of TV pricing disputes where both sides portray themselves as heroes fighting an injustice on behalf of their customers. And either way, it's bad news for AT&T's roughly 6 million U-verse subscribers, some of whom depend on Univision for everything from news to sports coverage.

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