Thousands of Cleveland and Chattanooga fans of the national singing competition, “The Voice” were dismayed and annoyed Tuesday evening when NBC pulled its network feed from AT&T coverage …
Thousands of Cleveland and Chattanooga fans of the national singing competition, “The Voice” were dismayed and annoyed Tuesday evening when NBC pulled its network feed from AT&T coverage across Southeast Tennessee.
The disruption caused AT&T customers to scramble for smartphones, computers and even old-fashioned rabbit ears in an effort to view Tuesday’s final telecast in this 13th season.
Other service providers were apparently unaffected.
There were several Tennessee connections in the show this year, including the appearance of former Lee University student Brooke Simpson in the finals to be determined Tuesday evening.
Repeated calls to the AT&T call center eventually received a partial explanation. Apparently, there is a disagreement in contract negotiations between the two communication entities — NBC and AT&T, according to an AT&T spokesperson.
AT&T placed a message on its blanked-out Channel 3 screen which read: “The owner of this channel (NBC) has removed it from AT&T’s U-verse lineup.”
The message also asked customers to go online for additional information. This continued correspondence said:
“AT&T’s agreements with programmers expire from time to time. We are
usually able to obtain renewals or extensions of such agreements, but in
rare cases we may be required to cease carriage of channels.”
Tuesday’s removal of Channel 3 from AT&T’s offerings was untimely for fans of the show, and many online comments were very expressive.
The former Lee University student was among four finalists vying for the 2017 title in the competition, along with Chloe Kohanski of Nashville, Red Marlow of Dickson, and Addison Agen of Fort Wayne, Ind.
Fans of the national program had viewed the competition on Channel 3 over the past few months, winding down to Tuesday’s determination of the winner.
The show went on across the nation’s airways, but NBC’s action against AT&T’s Channel 3 kept many Southeast Tennessee viewers in the dark.
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