As of August 1, GolTV – the 24/7 soccer network – has been removed from DISH Network due to a contract dispute.
According to GolTV, “this occurs despite efforts to continue GolTV’s availability to Dish customers.” DISH Network, in retort, inserted this message when you hit the INFO button where GolTV’s channel used to be: “GolTV has removed this channel after asking for unreasonable terms to renew the contract and we’re working to solve the problem.”
In the meantime, DISH Network is offering free previews of both Setanta Sports and Fox Sports Espanol to its customers. However, even if DISH Network customers subscribed to Setanta and Fox Sports Espanol, that won’t replace the void that’s left with GolTV gone because GolTV has exclusive license rights in the United States to La Liga and Bundesliga, as well as many 2010 World Cup qualifiers and this weekend’s Emirates Cup featuring Real Madrid, Hamburg, Juventus and Arsenal.
For DISH Network, the decision to remove GolTV is idiotic. Hopefully this a short-term disagreement between GolTV and DISH Network that will be resolved soon, but the timing couldn’t be worse and soccer fans will want to make a decision soon whether to leave DISH Network before the new seasons begin. My gut instinct says that this issue won’t be resolved soon especially when GolTV tells readers on its homepage that “You can find GolTV on our current distribution partners,” which includes DirecTV.
If you love GolTV, my recommendation would be to simply cancel your DISH Network subscription and move to DirecTV where you get GolTV there instead. If you’re upset about the situation, vote with your dollars by leaving DISH but don’t forget to send them an e-mail too to let them know why you’re canceling and moving to their biggest competitor.
DISH Network can be contacted here.