Subscribers to beIN SPORTS and beIN SPORTS en Español will no longer be able to access those channels on Comcast Xfinity due to a dispute between both parties.
According to a statement by beIN SPORTS, “This announcement comes four months after beIN SPORTS was forced to file a carriage complaint against Comcast due to violating program carriage rules and the non-discrimination condition attached with the FCC’s approval of its purchase of NBCUniversal. The network took legal action to ensure beIN SPORTS content is made available to the largest possible audience of fans, in line with the position of other major sports networks. beIN has expressed concern that this action is in retaliation for exercising its right to file with the FCC.”
Per Comcast, the dispute is about carriage fees.
In a message on the beIN SPORTS channel carried by Comcast, it reads “Have you heard about a disagreement between beIn Sports and Comcast? Every month Comcast has to pay networks to bring their programming to you. That’s right, we pay the network. Not the other way around. Now beIN sports is asking for a major increase in fees for the channel you already have, which could have a big impact on your bill. beIN Sports won’t allow Comcast to carry its channels until this is resolved.”
In response, beIN SPORTS issued the following statement.
“We are shocked that Comcast would mislead its customers concerning the negotiation of its carriage of beIN SPORTS programming,” said Antonio Briceño, beIN SPORTS’ Deputy Managing Director for the U.S. and Canada. “In fact, beIN offered to extend the agreement with Comcast on existing terms, and Comcast refused. Just like Comcast has refused to offer our networks in high definition or allow its customers to use beIN Connect. Unfortunately, Comcast would rather continue to exercise the chokehold it has on the pay-tv market and squeeze customers for more money by only carrying beIN in high priced tiers. beIN remains committed to delivering unparalleled sports content to the broadest audience and continuing to build fan engagement for its’ content partners.”
The dispute is similar to the one between Univision and DISH/Sling TV that is preventing Univision Deportes channels from being available on DISH Network and Sling TV.
For soccer fans that subscribe to beIN SPORTS, the new LaLiga season kicks off on Friday, August 17. The French Ligue 1 season kicks off a week earlier on Friday, August 10.
Hopefully the dispute will be resolved before those major soccer leagues begin.
Per beIN SPORTS, subscribers who would like to keep beIN SPORTS and beIN SPORTS en Español can visit www.keepbeINonXFINITY.com or call 1-877-789-1392 to file a complaint to their cable provider directly.
If you’re a Comcast customer, another option to consider is to cancel your Comcast service and sign up for a 7-day free trial to fuboTV, which streams all of the beIN SPORTS channels, NBCSN, FOX Sports and a ton of others.