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Sling TV Subscribers Lose ESPN, Disney Channel, FX, Nat Geo And More [Updated]

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Updated: October 3rd, 2022 at 10:31 am

Update 10/03: Sling and Disney have now reached an agreement which has seen the return of Disney, ESPN, and a number of other dropped channels, to Sling TV. End of Update.

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Original article (09/30): Sling TV subscribers have lost access to a number of channels, including ESPN, Disney Channel, Freeform, FX, and National Geographic, after Sling and The Walt Disney Company failed to agree a new deal. As is often the case with disputes like this, it currently remains to be seen if the channels will be restored in the future.

Carriage disputes are nothing new and are usually the result of the two companies involved being unable to agree terms once the current contract period has come to an end. That appears to be the case here, with Sling TV explaining that the contract with Disney expired without a new one in place, resulting in the removal of the channels from its lineup.

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According to Sling, the two companies are continuing to negotiate over the dropped channels. Sling also said that it offered a temporary contract extension to ensure subscribers retained access to the channels while negotiations continued, but Disney refused the offer. As for the reason for the dispute, Sling argues that Disney is asking Sling to pay an unfair amount to continue to provide the same channels to its subscribers.

Below is the full list of affected channels:

  • ABC News Live
  • ACC Network
  • ACC Network Extra
  • BabyTV
  • Disney Channel
  • Disney Jr
  • Disney XD
  • ESPN
  • ESPN 2
  • ESPN 3
  • ESPN OnDemand
  • ESPNEWS
  • ESPNU
  • ESPN Deportes
  • Freeform
  • FX
  • FXM
  • FXX
  • Jimmy Kimmel Live
  • Longhorn Network
  • Nat Geo
  • Nat Geo Wild
  • Nat Geo Mundo
  • SEC Network
  • SEC+

For reference, the dispute not only affects Sling TV with Dish customers having also now lost access to the same channels. According to Dish, the dispute has also resulted in the lose of access to ABC locals in eight markets. Affected Sling subscribers can visit slingpromise.com for more information, while affected Dish customers can visit dishpromise.com.

Sling TV is not the only live TV service to end up in this situation. Back in December of last year, YouTube TV also removed a number of Disney channels. However, that dispute was fairly short-lived with YouTube and Disney managing to quickly agree a new deal and restore access to the channels. Whether the current Sling TV-Disney dispute is resolved quite as quickly remains to be seen, but the clock is now ticking.

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John Finn

By John Finn

John started Streaming Better to help consumers navigate the live TV streaming and subscription service landscape. John has been writing about technology and TV-related services and devices since 2014 and believes the best streaming approach is to bounce between services as needed. Contact John via email at john@streamingbetter.com or on Twitter

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