DirecTV pulls Comcast-owned channel off its lineup

It hardly ranks up there with News Corp. (Nasdaq: NWSA) pulling 19 sports channels from Dish Network (Nasdaq: DISH) or their whole broadcast lineup from Cablevision (NYSE: CVC), but on a slow day for retransmission news, it's noteworthy that DirecTV (Nasdaq: DTV) has dropped Comcast's (Nasdaq: CMCSA) G4 network. The last time DirecTV dropped a Comcast network it was Versus and that move didn't hold; the two sides eventually agreed and Versus returned to the DirecTV lineup.

The G4 move wasn't a big surprise since DirecTV gave Comcast plenty of advance warning it was going this route. Still, it shows that the service providers sometimes have the power to control the programming sources.

DirecTV said that it was looking to control programming costs by dropping less watched networks and G4, with its lineup of hot girls and video games had a somewhat limited audience of young guys. Of course this is the same argument both Dish and Cablevision tried against Fox; and they still ended up with a bunch of lightly watched channels as part of their new agreements.

Anyway, this might be something to watch as Comcast takes over NBC Universal and starts hawking even more cable products.

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