As promised, the negotiation deadline lapsed and LIN pulled WLUK off DISH Network last night. Now the dueling press releases tell very different stories:
LIN Media president and CEO Vincent Sadusky: We only want what is fair for our local stations, so that we can continue providing the premium news, sports, entertainment, and other local programming that is most important to viewers. We will continue negotiating with Dish so we may reach an agreement.
And then... the other side.
DISH Network: It's unfortunate that LIN Media, a corporate media conglomerate, pulled its channels down at midnight, holding viewers in 17 markets across the nation hostage while attempting to coerce Dish Network to submit to outrageous demands. Even more disappointing is the fact that LIN Media didn't even make an effort to keep negotiating during the final hours and failed to respond despite our numerous attempts to reach them. LIN Media also refused to grant the contract extension we proposed. Dish Network offered LIN Media a fee increase comparable to market rates already agreed to with more than 1,000 other TV stations. However, in the last few days, LIN Media increased its fees even more, demanding more than a 175 percent rate increase in the first year alone.
LIN Media is simply being greedy, insisting on a rate increase so immense that DISH Network and its customers couldn't possibly absorb it. Their onerous demands and burdensome contract terms would result in payments of millions of dollars more each month, exceeding current market rates and demanding more money than we pay most of our popular national networks.
Who do you believe?