Even as the Phase I and II of digital addressable system (DAS) is yet to settle fully, the multi-system operators (MSOs) and broadcasters are embroiled in a bitter tussle. Broadcasters are asking for higher subscription payouts and reduction in carriage fees, something which the MSOs are resisting.
MSM Discovery, which operates under the TheOneAlliance brand, has issued disconnection notices to DEN Networks over non-signing of agreement and outstanding dues. The TV channel distributor has issued notices to the MSO in different cities in North India that includes Delhi, Agra and Ghaziabad (Uttar Pradesh), Faridabad (Haryana), Jaipur and Jodhpur (Rajasthan).
According to the notice issued, Den Networks has 21 days to comply with issues raised by One Alliance.
The dispute also relates to the Times Television Network channels, which TheOneAlliance started distributing since 6 February 2013. The channels include Times Now, ET Now, Movies Now and zoOm.
In Delhi, the notice has been issued for outstanding dues, non-renewal of interconnection agreement and non-execution of agreement relating to Times Television Network (TTN) channels. In the other cities, it is on account of outstanding dues and non-execution of agreement for TTN channels.
DEN-logoTheOneAlliance’s Phase I interconnect agreement with DEN for Delhi ended on 30 October. However, in other cities in UP and Rajasthan it will run till early next year.
Makarand Palekar, SVP sales and affiliate relations, MSM Discovery, said, “Our agreement with Den Networks expired on 30 October, the MSO has not initiated any communication from their end to renew the Interconnect agreement. Also their outstanding amount is huge. They haven’t paid for the past four months."
A DEN Networks official said that the notice is just a ploy by MSM Discovery to extract more subscription fees. The source says that MSM Discovery is just using outstanding dues as pressure tactics.
The disconnection notices were issued in a New Delhi based newspaper on 20 November.