Here’s why streaming services are always duking it out over channels

Here’s why streaming services are always duking it out over channels


photo by Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images

There’s something extraordinarily frustrating about subscribing to a TV service only for that service to lose the programming you signed up for. But that threat of lost channels — or worse, the actual loss of major networks — is a recurring problem for internet TV services, and it comes up alot.

The latest incident hit just this weekend: late Friday night, more than a dozen Disney-owned channels, including ESPN and FX, disappeared from YouTube TV when the two companies failed to reach a deal to keep them on the streaming service. The dispute didn’t last long. Just 36-or-so hours later, the companies came to an agreement — soon enough to avoid anyone missing ESPN’s Monday Night Football.

It was an outcome Disney could pretty much bank…

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