Update: While Hulu has lost local affiliate ABC affiliate networks in some markets, those channels have been replaced with a national ABC feed, giving viewers continued access to ABC programming.
Hulu with Live could lose Nexstar owned local channels as soon as tonight, the broadcast television group warns customers. Nexstar owns and operates a total of 197 television stations, including ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, and CW stations in locations around the US. Nexstar’s ABC affiliate stations are on the chopping block in this carriage dispute.
A Cord Cutters News reader sent a video of the following message being shown on their local ABC station.
Urgent News for Hulu + Live TV subscribers: This Thursday, you may lose WJET on Hulu + Live TV. That means no local news, weather, or sports from JET 24 Action News and no Friday Night Lights. Call 888-265-6650 now and demand Hulu + Live TV keep WJET and deliver what you pay for.
Hulu sent the following email to customers who would be affected: We wanted to let you know as soon as we could that, as of today (10/16/2020), Hulu no longer has the rights to distribute the local ABC affiliate that was previously included with your Live TV plan. However, we’re going to continue giving you access to live ABC network programming. You may start to notice some change — including your local news and syndicated programs on ABC are no longer available — but you’ll still be able to keep up with primetime shows, sports, and more.
WJET made the following statement: “WJET and Hulu + Live TV have a contract that allows them to carry our programming to you. That contract expires Thursday, 10/15, and if the contract is not renewed with a new agreement, Hulu + Live TV might remove WJET from your schedule. WJET has presented a proposal for fair value, based on the importance and value our programming brings to our viewers. Despite our tireless efforts, Hulu + Live TV has refused our fair offer and is making negotiations very difficult. You’ve might have seen them do this before. They will tell you it’s for your benefit, but don’t believe it. Our offer is fair. And now they hold you the subscriber hostage. It’s not right.”
More Hulu customers have reported seeing similar notifications, on the Hulu community forum.
We’ve reached out to Hulu and will be back with an update when we learn more about the carriage dispute with Nexstar.
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Jess Barnes attended Edinboro University and spent years working in nonprofit before taking up freelance writing in 2012. Jess has been working for Cord Cutters News since 2017.