Can’t view Rudolph tonight on directv stream

Mr Tony

SatelliteGuys Pro
Original poster
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
Mankato, MN
So I have Directv Stream as part of my rent where I live. Interesting when I tune to my local CBS (KEYC) to watch Rudolph tonight I get this.
Is this normal? Why would Directv ‘black it out’ on the local CBS?
CBS doesn't have the OTT streaming rights to that movie, it's the same situation with Frosty the Snowman.
You'll also see that message on TCM during some movies on there, or on a non-Bally RSN during a game on there that isn't in market (e.g. most of NEPA where only the Rangers, Knicks, and non-MSGSN Devils games are in market on MSG)
Yeah, cable and sat, OTA customers can see it just fine, but DTV Stream (as well as Fubo, Youtube, and Hulu or any other OTT provider) customers can't see it.
Yeah. Apparently CBS signed their deal for Frosty and Rudolph a LONG time ago way before streaming TV was a thing, while ABC signed their deal for Freeform carriage of them just a few years ago.
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Here's Freeform's schedule for the Rankin/Bass specials, and their airings include segments that CBS edits out for time:

Sunday, Dec. 3
7:10pm Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
8:15pm Frosty the Snowman

Monday, Dec. 4
4:10pm Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town
5:15pm Frosty the Snowman
5:50pm Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
12:00am Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town

Wednesday, Dec. 20
8:15pm Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
9:20pm Frosty the Snowman
9:55pm Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town

Thursday, Dec. 21
3:35pm Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town
4:40pm Frosty the Snowman
5:15pm Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Sunday, Dec. 24
5:35pm Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
6:40pm Frosty the Snowman

Monday, Dec. 25
10:30am Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town
3:30pm Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
4:30pm Frosty the Snowman
5:00pm Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town
I just looked, Rudolph, Santa and Frosty is available in 4K/DV on Vudu for sale, extremely curious how well they look.
It's a lot better now than it was in the early days of authenticated streaming. Like when WatchESPN and WatchABC first launched ESPN had to blackout all MLB telecasts and blur the screen anytime MLB highlights appeared on SportsCenter while the ABC O&O streams had to replace the sports segments during their newscasts with a scoreboard and blackout any shows distributed by Warner Bros.

CBS likely got a sweet long term deal with Classic Media for their twice a year airings of Rudolph and Frosty as they are still using the same 2005 edits. Since then the pre-1974 Rankin/Bass library has changed hands multiple times via Classic Media, Dreamworks Animation and eventually NBCU who likely want CBS to pay significantly more if they want to upgrade that early 2000s deal to include streaming rights.
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Now if they get the same rules as sat and cable will blocks like this go away?
It is less about the rules and more about what the stations negotiate for with their respective networks. If those negotiations don't contemplate streaming rights, they can't extend the streaming rights to the streaming service.

I expect that the stations aren't all that interested in getting streaming rights given how much effort the networks themselves are putting into providing DTC streaming.
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Having the streaming rights is a seperate thing between the networks/stations and the rights holders along with the contracts between the studios and the cast and crew, or their estates for older content.
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