If you have DirecTV, you may not have Monday Night Football next month.
ESPN has begun warning viewers that its channels could soon exit AT&T platforms, including the DirecTV satellite service.
As noted by John Ourand of Sports Business Journal, the spots began during Week One of Monday Night Football, and they have continued.
“We have a responsibility to make our viewers aware of the potential loss of our programming,” ESPN told Ourand. AT&T had a predictably different view: “We’re disappointed to see The Walt Disney Co. put their viewers into the middle of negotiations.”
The viewers necessarily are in the middle of the negotiations; DirecTV wants to pay less and ESPN wants to be paid more and the rest of us think we’re already paying too damn much and just want our content without having to worry about not having it.
DirecTV has seen various outages in recent weeks, but the loss of ESPN channels during football season would spark an outcry from thousands of sports fans who may find themselves listening to Monday Night Football on the radio. And if that happens, both sides will be to blame.