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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – DirectTV customers who wanted to watch the weekends NFL play off games on WSVN were out of luck.

The station cuts its link to DirectTV on Friday at midnight after they failed to reach an agreement on retransmission consent, according to The Sun-Sentinel.

The play off games on CBS aired as scheduled.

When DirectTV customers, approximately 270,000 homes in Miami-Dade and Broward, tuned in for the games, all they found was a screen which read “No need to call us. Service will be restored as soon as technical difficulties are resolved. Please check this channel periodically for status updates. Sorry for the interruption.”

WSVN general manager Robert Leider told the paper he ordered the link cut because he felt DirectTV’s offer for retransmission services was below fair market value.

Sal Benhaim, a DirectTV customer, told CBS4 he was really upset.  He said he pays extra for local channels and when he called DirectTV they would not let him out of his contract so he’s paying extra for something he can’t watch.

Football fans who wanted to watch the games were left with few options; find a friend with cable service or AT&T U-Verse, head out to a sports bar or hook up an old fashioned antenna.

There is no word on when service will be restored.

The Sun-Sentinel contributed to this report.

Comments (18)
  1. timothy green says:

    I was really mad that I had to listen to the game on the radio. I’m cancelling direct tv monday. I pay 120 a month,and I’m not going to take it anymore.WSVN is at fault also,because they are getting the same as all the other local channels. They can all kiss my b###

  2. Jimbo99 says:

    This is my biggest fear with the sports channels going the way they have. ABC no longer airs MNF, that’s on ESPN now. TV revenue is such a big part of the money networks and the NFL make money. If this were power, water or sewage, what these two groups have done would be criminal. Instead it’s dropped services for cable tv. WSVN lied, these aren’t technical difficulties, they are man made and negotiations failures over greed. A technical difficulty is hardware related, this certainly is egos and human related issues that have absolutely nothing to do with equipment failures. In good faith to their customers, the broadcasts should’ve been in place until these people get their agreement in place.

    1. Jimbo99 says:

      And to say not to call them, they’d love that, there would be no repercussions for playing with people’s lives this way and what they’ve paid to DirectTV in good faith for services & expectations.

  3. tony says:

    Robert Leider has an obligation to have the signal restore in case of an emergency. the FCC uses local broadcast channels to send the transmission..I think they should be fine and he should lose his job ..regardless of the playoffs he actually endanger lives with this decision.. wsvn think they are better then their parent company has agree to renewals across the board around the counrty with all stations except those operated by sunbeam..boycotting this station should send a message..remember folks their only negotiating chip is the nfl playoffs..after this week their program is simple and wont be missed. keep your stand and lets show that idiot leider that this decision may cost him his job.. vandalizing thier news truck on the street may help also 🙂

    1. Rick Santorum says:

      An education for everyone: 1) WSVN is not owned by Fox. They are network affiliates of FOX, but FOX is not responsible for their business decisions. 2) The FCC does not control anything but WSVN’s Over-The-Air broadcasts, the kind you get free with an antenna. They will not intervene in this, because WSVN is meeting it’s license terms. It continues to broadcast free, over the air, as its license permits. 3) Local TV stations are under NO OBLIGATION to allow cable TV or Satellite companies to carry their signal. These companies, for years, picked up that signal for free and then charged to deliver it to you.The law was changed to allow local TV stations to demand payment, and companies like Dish and DirecTV hate that. More and more local TV stations are doing what WSVN did. In this case, they said…OK, so you’re charging your customers but don’t want top pay us? Ok, you can’t have our signal. Both sides are to blame. Trust me: neither side will be hurting at all when this is over. You won’t stop watching 7, and you won’t drop DirecTV. You’ll just complain until it’s fixed.

  4. wallace says:

    I wateched yesterday’s game on the internet without a problem. Mr. Leider’s brinkmanship simply shows how out of touch he is with new trends. Local television news viewership continues to decline; WSVN sued Neilsen ratings in 2009 in an effort to cover up their fall off a cliff. What are we paying you more for Mr. Leider? Poor, sensationalistic local news coverage? Please, move into the new millenium. Close useless broadcasters and move to a national feed.

  5. Peter T says:

    WSVN has the worst NEWSCAST and I been forced with watch the FOX games on a borrowed portable TV and converter box because I don’t have a digital antenna.

    FOX NETWORK should not renewal their contract this this station and dump WSVN just like NBC did many years ago.

    BTW – Last time I checked, NBC 6 MIAMI is owned by NBC Universal and they got the SUPERBOWL

    1. John Morrow says:

      NBC did not exactly dump WSVN.NBC wanted to own a station in this market, and they tried to buy the station. Mr. Ansin would not sell it. So NBC bought WTVJ, putting the affiliation on them. Actually, the NBC rep was very unhappy to deliver the message. But Mr. Ansin, always the gentleman, accepted the decision. Nothing personal, just business.

  6. sandy says:

    Iam really upset also with no football games or other programs. and i also pay more for local channels and its just not fair . i hope the fcc comes down on you hard.

    1. sandy says:


  7. Sandy says:

    WSVN stinks and their advertiser’s need to know that everyone affected are going to start Boycotting any business buying air time with them is going to be affected starting with Rick Case Honda..

  8. Mike Rothman says:


  9. F. U. Jerks says:

    cant wait to ask WSVN for my discount on my ads during this stretch. yeah go ahead, eliminate 270k of the most affluent households in the market. who wants to reach them anyway.

  10. sunriser09 says:

    Bye, bye WSVN. Your news is horrible and the FOX programming isn’t much better. BTW the converter box works beautifully. Watched the game in the comfort of my home in stunning HD without any problem.

    If Sunbeam/WSVN thought they would have support for their childish stunt, they were sadly mistaken. A majority of Directv viewers are savvy and are tired of being taken advantage of. So buh buh WSVN. I’ll still be watching next week’s playoff game from the comfort of my home. Actually check out channel 29, the West Palm station, much better news.

  11. Rob Frame says:

    Lets dig a little deeper on the next story. How much money are we talking about? How long have these talks been going on? How long is the agreement?

    Is this typical for stations to do this?

  12. Peaches H says:

    Television is too over rated anyway…. Read a book, play a game… show these idiots that you are not interested in their school days fight! Wow… boys will be boys… with that said, thank goodness there is more than one station to watch!

  13. abootnkiki says:

    and then they have u by the balls,called to cancel and they want to charge a penalty.holding u hostage,there should be a law against contracts and see how their service would improve if we could go shopping somewhere else @ anytime

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