Game Show Network Just Got Canceled For Tons Of Viewers
The Game Show Network has been canceled on Dish Network, despite the channel showcasing an increase in viewer numbers.
The Game Show Network was removed from the lineups of Dish Network’s satellite TV and Sling TV streaming services earlier this week after the parties failed to reach a renewal agreement. Owned by Sony Pictures Television, the channel’s programming is dedicated to game shows like The Match Game, Deal or No Deal, Cash Cab, Master Minds, America Says, and The $100,000 Pyramid. Along with a few reruns, it also houses brand new, first-run original and revived game shows. The network has also previously aired various reality competition series and televised poker.
After eight months of failed negotiations, the companies decided to go their separate ways. However, as is the norm in almost every dispute, those involved issued dueling statements highlighting their position in the standoff. Dish claims that its goal and priority was to reach a fair agreement to bring the channel back as quickly as possible. Meanwhile, the Game Show Network told Deadline they tried to complete the deal but could not agree to Dish’s demands.
In a statement via Variety, the Game Show Network said Dish is choosing to do this to an independent network that costs virtually nothing compared to local retransmission or sports networks. Sony Entertainment-owned network also alleged that Dish’s recent removal of channels has been focused on local retransmission deals for local television stations and regional sports networks. They also cited the pay-TV company’s disputes with Tegna, Sinclair Broadcast Group, Block Communications, AT&T SportsNet, and NBC Regional Sports Networks.
Following the Game Show Networks’ very public call-to-action social media post, the satellite provider said it was willing to work with the channel on coming to an agreement to get the old services back. Speaking about the ordeal, Dish Senior Vice President of Programming Andy LeCuyer said GSN had made the decision to remove its service from Dish and Sling. He added that the company backpedaled out of a handshake agreement to continue carriage of the service on their platforms. “This is a deceitful negotiation tactic aimed at our customers, putting them in the middle,” he told the publication.
Dish also pointed customers to other options to continue watching some of Game Show Network’s programming during their forced blackout. The satellite provider said that Dish and Sling customers can download the free Pluto TV app from Paramount to stream several Game Show Network programs. They also said that new episodes of Family Feud air on ABC. In 2019, Sony Pictures Entertainment acquired AT&T’s 42% stake in GSN for approximately $500 million, making the network wholly owned by the media giant.
A year later, a list of Nielsen ratings published by Variety indicated that Game Show Network averaged 432,000 prime-time viewers. The data also noted an increase of about 6% from the 2019 average. Then in December 2021, Mark Feldman resigned after four years as President of the Game Show Network. He later joined Scopely, the video game firm, amid the gaming unit sale from Sony. He was succeeded by John Zaccario who took over his old duties at the network.