Dispute between Viacom, DirecTV produces humor at their expense

DirecTV, Viacom fight still frustrating customers

(WMC-TV) – It has been two weeks since a dispute between Viacom and DirecTV made some channels go dark for satellite subscribers.

For more than a week, about 20 million DirecTV customers have not been able to watch channels like Nickelodeon, MTV, Comedy Central, BET and 13 others, all of which are owned by Viacom. At one point, Viacom even pulled some of its programming that you can normally see online.

"The demand that you pay over 30 percent more, that's an extra billion dollars for the exact same channels you already receive," said DirecTV CEO Mike White.

Jon Stewart made light of the dispute during The Daily Show.

"Viacom, DirecTV, what are you doing here? You got ad campaigns blaming each other, telling people to rise up and demand it like it's some basic cable Arab spring, I got news for you it's not," said Jon Stewart on Monday.

But it is a big dispute that began when both sides failed to reach a new programming fee agreement.

DirecTV's CEO said he expects the dispute to end soon. Viacom said they have offered several deals but DirecTV has declined.

There is no telling what will happen next in the battle, but at least some affected still have a sense of humor.

"So if you're a DirecTV customer not watching tonight, it's not because of a rain cloud passed in front of the satellite," joked Jon Stewart.

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