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Fox Spars With Its Own Affiliates, Quietly Launching Streaming Network Feed on Hulu

Phillip Dampier June 12, 2017 Competition, Consumer News, Online Video 1 Comment

Subscribers to Hulu’s live-streaming TV service last week discovered live Fox network programming was available on the service whether a local Fox affiliate agreed to stream its programming to viewers or not.

The network quietly launched a new national 24-hour streaming feed of Fox Network shows filled out with programming from other Fox-owned networks in more than 70 markets where its affiliates have yet to sign an agreement to stream local stations.

For now, the national Fox Network feed is only available over Hulu’s live TV service, part-owned by 21st Century Fox. But sources told the Wall Street Journal the network intends to launch it on other streaming platforms in the near future (subscription required to read linked story).

The feed offers the full Fox Network schedule. At times when local stations normally carry syndicated programming, infomercials, or local news, the national Fox feed airs shows from other Fox-owned cable networks including National Geographic, Fox News Channel, Fox Business News, and content from Fox’s enormous library of programming offered by 21st Century Fox Television Studio.

The move has angered Fox’s affiliates, who are angling to strike their own more lucrative carriage deals for streaming services. Fox affiliates complain Fox’s terms for local station participation on Hulu’s streaming platform are inferior to the compensation offered to affiliates of rival networks, often by more than 50%.

Fox set the terms allowing the launch of the feed sometime ago as part of their affiliate renewal contract. Fox affiliates cannot compel the network to switch the feed off, but in markets where local stations do manage to sign deals with streaming services, the local station will replace the national feed.

The announcement is bad news for Sinclair Broadcast Group, the largest local station owner in the country. Sinclair has yet to sign a contract with Hulu to allow carriage of its owned and operated Fox-affiliates, so where a local Sinclair Fox affiliate operates, streaming services will carry the national Fox feed instead.

Viewers will be able to watch all Fox Network shows, including whatever NFL game Fox’s national feed chooses to carry. But missing from the lineup will be local news and other programming.

Currently there is 1 comment on this Article:

  1. Josh says:

    I need all 6 major networks on these platforms, WITH a high-quality TiVo-rivaling DVR, before they’re worth anything to me.

    I don’t know why this is all so half-assed. These services are all excited to show me their channels…and then they’re always massively overpriced with a ton of channels I don’t want, have no or a terrible DVR, and carry none of the 6 main networks in my area, and maybe 2-3 in some areas.

    Why can’t they just duplicate whatever deals the cable companies are doing?

    (Weirdly, MyTV is supposedly carried live…the ONLY local network carried live on Hulu. And I suppose Fox’s national shows now too. Better than nothing, but I could more or less live without MyTV (although technically mine caries a TON of live sports others would want))

    But without the big 6 networks, I don’t care how excited you are to give me Fox Sports Network 37 and Comcast Sports Network West-Central-South 12.







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