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Dodgers News: DirecTV Increases Fee Without Carrying SportsNet LA

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The Los Angeles Dodgers have played just over 25 percent of their regular season games, yet an estimated 70 percent of southern California is still unable to see Clayton Kershaw, Hanley Ramirez, Yasiel Puig and the rest of their Dodgers on their TVs.

Currently, Time Warner Cable’s SportsNet LA is only available to Bright House Networks, Champion Broadband and TWC subscribers. A notable omission from the group of carriers that offers SportsNet LA is industry giant DirecTV. The satellite provider and TWC have been at odds in their prolonged negotiations for DirecTV to begin carrying the Dodgers’ network.

TWC executive vice president and chief video and content officer, Melinda Witmer, accused DirecTV of walking away from negotiations in early April. A DirecTV spokesman fired back at TWC, calling the report false.

Dodgers president Stan Kasten issued caution that his belief is DirecTV may go the entire season without adding SportsNet LA to their programming and Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti also chimed in.

Despite not coming to terms with TWC, DirecTV recently increased their regional sports fee. According to Jen Heger of RadarOnline.com, the increase amounted to over $1.00, per month:

Here’s the scoop: The regional sports fee went from $2.00 a month to $3.83 recently.

RadarOnline contacted some who have been affected by the price increase and understandably, an unnamed customer was not pleased with the increase:

It’s so disappointing that DirectTV increased the fee, and dropped the Dodgers! Compounding that, customers have to call to ask for a credit for something that we are paying for β€” but not getting β€” the Dodgers!”

DirecTV’s spat with TWC over a Los Angeles sports network is nothing new. When the Lakers launched their network, SportsNet, the satellite provider didn’t immediately jump at the opportunity to carry it. However, a deal was completed roughly one week into the Lakers’ regular season. With a team expected to finish atop the NL West division and contend for a World Series, DirecTV has frustratingly remained steadfast in their decision to not add SportsNet LA to their programming.
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