DISH TO CARRY LIFETIME CHANNELS ONCE AGAIN

After Rancorous Dispute, Cable Network and Satellite Provider Kiss and Make Up

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- Like many of the movies that made it famous, Lifetime’s EchoStar carriage dispute had a reconciliatory, if not altogether happy, ending.

After some of the most publicly contentious carriage negotiations in recent history, Lifetime is back on EchoStar’s Dish Network after a month of banishment. And despite EchoStar’s earlier assertion that it had eliminated carriage of the Lifetime Movie Network for good, the digital movie channel also will now once again grace the Dish lineup.

After some of the most publicly contentious carriage negotiations in recent history, Lifetime is back on EchoStar’s Dish Network after a month of banishment.

As part of its public campaign to get the satellite operator to reinstate carriage, Lifetime ran two full-page ads in The New York Times, the Denver Post and Rocky Mountain News -- those last two EchoStar’s hometown papers -- criticizing the satellite operator for dropping the network.

Open letter to CEO
The first ad ran Jan. 12 as an open letter to EchoStar CEO Charlie Ergen, asking him to restore the networks to Dish’s lineup. The letter was signed by women’s organizations such as the National Organization for Women, the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and the Ms. Foundation for Women. The second ad, which ran last week, noted that while Lifetime remains off the air, the satellite operator offers 46 sports channels and seven pornography channels. “It’s obvious that Dish doesn’t value women,” it said.

The ads, which reportedly infuriated Mr. Ergen, urged Dish subscribers to cancel their Dish service in favor of DirecTV or a local cable operator.

While Lifetime was off the air, EchoStar came to a carriage agreement with Oxygen that catapulted its distribution from 56 million homes to almost 65 million homes. As of 11 p.m. Eastern time last night, Lifetime was back on America’s Top 60 and Dish Latino Dos programming packages and Lifetime Movie Network was in Dish’s Top 180 package.

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