Weather Channel cuts reality shows in DirecTV deal

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Weather Channel cuts reality shows in DirecTV deal
NEW YORK - AUGUST 28: In this handout image provided by The Weather Channel, Jim Cantore, an on-camera meteorologist for The Weather Channel, reports on Hurricane Irene from Battery Park August 28, 2011 in New York City. The center of the hurricane made land fall at Coney Island in New York causing flooding in parts of the city. (Jonathan Saruk/The Weather Channel via Getty Images)
FILE - In a July 30, 1981 photo, Frank Batten, publisher of the Norfolk, Va., Virginian-Pilot and Ledger-Star, and chairman and chief executive of Landmark Communications, Inc., left, and John Coleman, ABC-TV's Good Morning America' meteorologist, show the new live continuous 24-hour weather channel on cable television during a news conference, July 30, 1981 in New York. Batten, who built a communications empire that spanned newspapers and cable television and created The Weather Channel, has died. Landmark vice chairman Richard F. Barry III says Batten died early Thursday, Sept. 10, 2009 in Norfolk, Va., after a prolonged illness.He was 82. (AP Photo/Marty Lederhandler)
IMAGE DISTRIBUTED FOR THE WEATHER CHANNEL - In this image released on Friday, March 14, 2014, Sam Champion introduces his husband Rubem Robierb to guests at his 'Welcome to Atlanta' reception at the Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta. (Paul Abell / AP Images for The Weather Channel)
NEW YORK - AUGUST 28: In this handout image provided by The Weather Channel, Jim Cantore, an on-camera meteorologist for The Weather Channel, reports on Hurricane Irene from Battery Park August 28, 2011 in New York City. The center of the hurricane made land fall at Coney Island in New York causing flooding in parts of the city. (Jonathan Saruk/The Weather Channel via Getty Images)
PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 11: David Clark, President, The Weather Channel, and weather anchor and managing editor Sam Champion, speak onstage during the 'New Morning Show on The Weather Channel' ' panel discussion at The Weather Channel portion of the 2014 Winter Television Critics Association tour at the Langham Hotel on January 11, 2014 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)
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LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The Weather Channel is returning to DirecTV with a significant compromise that affects all of its viewers: it promises to focus more on the weather.

After a three-month dispute with DirecTV that saw the channel dropped to some 20 million U.S. viewers, the two sides came to a new deal that will restore service on Wednesday.

The biggest change to its programming will affect all Weather Channel viewers, not just DirecTV subscribers. It said it will reduce its reality programming by half on weekdays. That means fewer airings of TV shows like "Coast Guard Alaska" and "Hurricane Hunters."

David Kenny, the CEO of channel parent Weather Company, apologized for the disruption and vowed to reward viewers with more weather-focused news.

The deal will also allow DirecTV customers to have instant access to local weather information and to watch Weather Channel programming on mobile devices if they provide their subscriber information.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

DirecTV chief content officer Dan York acknowledged the dropping of the channel was "frustrating" for consumers, but added "their patience was ultimately rewarded with a better deal and a better product."

DirecTV will also keep running WeatherNation, the channel it first picked up to replace The Weather Channel when the dispute started. It announced a multiyear deal with WeatherNation TV Inc. last week.
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