Houston mayor pressures DirecTV, Suddenlink, AT&T to sign deal with Comcast SportsNet Houston

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With DirecTV (Nasdaq: DTV), AT&T's (NYSE: T) U-verse TV and Suddenlink Communications refusing to carry new regional sports network Comcast SportsNet Houston six months after its launch, the distributors are facing increased pressure from city officials in Houston.

Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) is the biggest distributor carrying SportsNet Houston, which runs Houston Astros baseball and Houston Rockets basketball games. The RSN is also offered by three smaller providers --  Consolidated Communications, EnTouch and Phonoscope. 

The impasse prompted Houston Mayor Annise Parker to send letters to DirecTV, Suddenlink and AT&T executives last week in which she requested a meeting. "The situation is intolerable," Parker wrote.

Suddenlink offered to carry CSN Houston on a sports tier, but the network has complained that the MSO carries other regional sports networks on expanded basic tiers.

Increased costs for regional sports networks have prompted several pay TV distributors including Verizon (NYSE: VZ), Cablevision (NYSE: CVC) and DirecTV to begin charging subscribers monthly surcharges for sports programming.

For more:
- the Houston Chronicle has this story

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