DStv Premium and Compact Plus subscribers have been hit with a slew of high tariff costs over the past few years and as more and more people move away from DStv in favour of streaming platforms like Netflix, Showmax and Amazon Prime, the pay-TV operator has hit consumers with another blow as it announces that popular channels History, Lifetime and Crime+Investigation will be removed from the service at the end of October as renewal negotiations with A+E Networks, who own the channels, broke down.
The breakdown in negotiations means that viewers will no longer be able to watch series such as Little Women and Homicide Hunter to Curse of Oak Island, The First 48, Lifetime movies and specials like Surviving R Kelly and many more.
During the brand’s recent content upfront, A+E Networks revealed that they were committed to growing their platforms in South Africa and have committed to grow the local industry by commissioning local productions with companies ranging from Clive Morris Productions to Katy Katopodis’ Nala Media working on programming like Crime Stories SA and a gender-violence TV special, Loved Like Crazy voiced by Iman Rappetti.
In response to a media enquiry, A+E Networks says that “We have been very proactive in trying to reach an agreement that is best for our viewers and for DStv. Our goal is to continue to bring our high-quality, award-winning programming to our local audiences.”
They add that “Our channels are available to viewers in over 160 countries around the world, and we negotiate several of these deals every year. We are willing to keep negotiations open, and we sincerely hope DStv will find a way to work with us to keep our channels so we can continue to share our great upcoming local and international programmes with our loyal fans. Everyone at A+E Networks Africa is committed to continue working with DStv to try to achieve a positive outcome.”
Meanwhile, DStv has confirmed that the channels are set to be cut from its platform at the end of October saying that the decision forms part of its “ongoing efforts to refresh our content line-up and optimise the suite of channels on offer”.
“We are continuously reviewing our content line-up and channel selection to improve our entertainment offering to our customers,” MultiChoice said. “This process includes ongoing engagement with various content partners to ensure we can provide more compelling content offerings for customers.”
But, DStv has promised two brand-new channels launching on the platform soon. “Both channels will bring exciting new titles and genres that viewers will really enjoy, including among others blue chip documentaries, history and factual reality shows,” MultiChoice said.
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