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Dish Network blinks in fight with Weather Channel

May 21, 2010 |  8:28 am

Dish Network, the satellite broadcaster with over 14 million subscribers, backed off its threat to drop the Weather Channel from its service over a contract dispute.

On Thursday, Dish Network said it was removing the Weather Channel in favor of its own weather network, called Weather Cast, that it was launching Friday.

Although Weather Cast did indeed launch, the Weather Channel is also still in Dish Network homes.

Dish Network cited the Weather Channel's addition of movies to its lineup as the reason it was dropping the service.

However, people close to the situation said it was the Weather Channel's push for a higher fee from Dish Network that led to the dispute.

According to SNL Kagan, an industry consulting firm, the Weather Channel charges about 11 cents per month, per subscriber for the channel. The Weather Channel is looking to increase that fee by about 10%.

For now, the two sides are still talking. Dish Network has always been one of the tougher distributors and in the past has shown a willingness to drop networks over fee disputes.

-- Joe Flint

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