Sports

What happened to ABC on YouTube TV? Streaming giant loses ESPN and Disney channels over contract dispute 

YouTube TV has lost several Disney-owned channels, including ABC, ESPN, and Freeform, after the two companies failed to come to a contractual agreement on Friday evening.

As a result, YouTube TV will be decreasing the price of its streaming platform from $64.99 to $49.99, as it has lost 25 channels. The channels that viewers will no longer be able to access are National Geographic and eight local ABC stations, among others.

YouTube released an official statement regarding the same.

“We know this is frustrating news for our customers, and not what we wanted. We will continue conversations with Disney to advocate on your behalf in hopes of restoring their content on YouTube TV.”


Why did Disney refuse to sign YouTube’s contract?

According to Disney, the Google- owned video sharing platform “declined to reach a fair deal” with Disney “based on market terms and conditions.”

This is the first contract-related blackout YouTube has dealt with in the past five years.

In a separate statement, Disney announced:

“We stand ready to reach an equitable agreement with Google as quickly as possible in order to minimize the inconvenience to YouTube TV viewers by restoring our networks. We hope Google will join us in that effort.”

The dispute between YouTube and Google revolves around money. According to YouTube, Disney attempted to claim higher fees for its television network. Their requested sum was much larger that “services of similar size pay,” according to YouTube.

Earlier this week, YouTube TV had warned its subscribers that Disney-owned channels could possibly vanish if the two companies were unable to reach a deal.

A list of all Disney channels that are no longer available include:

  • Your local ABC channel
  • ABC News Live
  • Disney Channel
  • Disney Junior
  • Disney XD
  • Freeform
  • FX
  • FXX
  • FXM
  • National Geographic
  • National Geographic Wild
  • ESPN
  • ESPN2
  • ESPN3 (by authentication to the ESPN app)
  • ESPNU
  • ESPNEWS
  • SEC Network
  • ACC Network

Google had a similar dispute with NBCUniversal earlier this year. YouTube requested for NBCU cable networks, which included their local stations as well.


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