The Weather Channel’s Jim Cantore can often be seen braving hurricanes, floods, or tornadoes. But today, visitors to the channel’s website find him warning of a different danger: DirecTV.
As of midnight Tuesday, the Weather Channel is no longer available to DirecTV subscribers, because the channel and the satellite giant were unable to reach a new payment deal.
At issue is how much DirecTV should have to pay to provide TWC’s programming to its subscribers. The 20 million people now without the Weather Channel (the negotiation deadline passed at midnight) are now less safe thanks to DirecTV’s stinginess, said the weather network. DirecTV says that TWC is hiding behind faux safety concerns to try to grab extra cash.
Negotiations continue, and a deal would bring TWC back to the satellite giant, but until then, DirecTV’s TWC fans will have to do without.
TWS says its demands — which it puts in the neighborhood of an increase of one penny per-subscriber, per-month — are totally reasonable. And DirecTV’s refusal to pay up, the channel says, puts its own interests ahead of the safety of millions who rely on TWC during severe weather.
In fact, so dangerous and irresponsible is the satellite company’s channel drop that it merits congressional action, TWC says. “Congress and DirecTV need to understand the risks to your local community,” reads the Weather Channel website.
Those claims are laughable, responds DirecTV. “The Weather Channel does not have an exclusive on weather coverage — the weather belongs to everyone,” said Dan York, the provider’s chief content officer.
Besides, if the Weather Channel was really all about safety, it wouldn’t dedicate 40 percent of its programming to reality shows, DirecTV said, citing that number — and pushback from its customers who prefer straight-weather coverage — as reasons for its unwillingness to pay a higher price. And that penny figure TWC is pushing?
That’s well below that actual number the channel is demanding, DirecTV says.
For now, both companies are pushing alternatives.
The satellite provider’s viewers will have to settle for WeatherNation, a smaller network brought on by DirecTV as its agreement with the Weather Channel was about to expire. Meanwhile,the Weather Channel still has its website. And it’s keen to remind DirecTV how many people have visited that page so far (currently at 1,676,470).
- 1 Trump Couldn’t Possibly Win—Except That He Probably Will
- 2 As Threats to the Grid Loom, the Catastrophe Lobby Gears Up
- 3 CBO: Repealing Obamacare Would Leave 19 Million Uninsured; Raise Federal Deficit
- 4 The Next President Is Apt To Be the Lesser of Three Evils
- 5 Clinton Goes Off The Air In Upcoming Primary States
What We're Following See More »
Foreign Policy takes a look at the future of mining the estimated "100,000 near-Earth objects—including asteroids and comets—in the neighborhood of our planet. Some of these NEOs, as they’re called, are small. Others are substantial and potentially packed full of water and various important minerals, such as nickel, cobalt, and iron. One day, advocates believe, those objects will be tapped by variations on the equipment used in the coal mines of Kentucky or in the diamond mines of Africa. And for immense gain: According to industry experts, the contents of a single asteroid could be worth trillions of dollars." But the technology to get us there is only the first step. Experts say "a multinational body might emerge" to manage rights to NEOs, as well as a body of law, including an international court.
Not to be outdone by Jeffrey Goldberg's recent piece in The Atlantic about President Obama's foreign policy, the New York Times Magazine checks in with a longread on the president's economic legacy. In it, Obama is cognizant that the economic reality--73 straight months of growth--isn't matched by public perceptions. Some of that, he says, is due to a constant drumbeat from the right that "that denies any progress." But he also accepts some blame himself. “I mean, the truth of the matter is that if we had been able to more effectively communicate all the steps we had taken to the swing voter,” he said, “then we might have maintained a majority in the House or the Senate.”
Ronald Reagan's children and political allies took to the media and Twitter this week to chide funnyman Will Ferrell for his plans to play a dementia-addled Reagan in his second term in a new comedy entitled Reagan. In an open letter, Reagan's daughter Patti Davis tells Ferrell, who's also a producer on the movie, “Perhaps for your comedy you would like to visit some dementia facilities. I have—I didn’t find anything comedic there, and my hope would be that if you’re a decent human being, you wouldn’t either.” Michael Reagan, the president's son, tweeted, "What an Outrag....Alzheimers is not joke...It kills..You should be ashamed all of you." And former Rep. Joe Walsh called it an example of "Hollywood taking a shot at conservatives again."
In a sign that she’s ready to put a longer-than-expected primary battle behind her, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (D) is no longer going on the air in upcoming primary states. “Team Clinton hasn’t spent a single cent in … California, Indiana, Kentucky, Oregon and West Virginia, while” Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) “campaign has spent a little more than $1 million in those same states.” Meanwhile, Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Sanders’ "lone backer in the Senate, said the candidate should end his presidential campaign if he’s losing to Hillary Clinton after the primary season concludes in June, breaking sharply with the candidate who is vowing to take his insurgent bid to the party convention in Philadelphia.”
The team behind the bestselling "Clinton Cash"—author Peter Schweizer and Breitbart's Stephen Bannon—is turning the book into a movie that will have its U.S. premiere just before the Democratic National Convention this summer. The film will get its global debut "next month in Cannes, France, during the Cannes Film Festival. (The movie is not a part of the festival, but will be shown at a screening arranged for distributors)." Bloomberg has a trailer up, pointing out that it's "less Ken Burns than Jerry Bruckheimer, featuring blood-drenched money, radical madrassas, and ominous footage of the Clintons."