Come close of business yesterday, we had a convo all ready to go live overnight on how Sky subscribers were set to lose all 13 of Discovery’s network of channels.
But, just as all hope seemed lost, a last-minute deal was struck to settle the dispute and save the channels (causing us one or two publishing headaches late evening!)
Discovery’s statement suggests that the decision was heavily influenced by the customer reaction on social media.
— Discovery Channel UK (@DiscoveryUK) January 31, 2017
Hardly surprising, given that so many Sky subscribers, myself included, found ourselves caught in the middle of the two companies.
Stuck in the middle
I’m a big tennis fan, so I was pretty excited when Eurosport won the rights to air all four Grand Slams in 2017.
But as I watched Roger Federer roll back the years at the Australian Open last month, the news that the channels were under threat scrolled along the bottom of my screen.
I couldn’t help but wonder if I would be given a discount on my monthly bill or even if I could leave the contract without penalty altogether.
At the end of the day, I didn’t need to worry, as things were resolved, but is it fair that consumers can get caught in the crossfire of two warring companies like this?
Only last October, a similar thing happened when Tesco withdrew Unilever brands, including larder staples such as Marmite and PG Tips, from its website in a row over price rises.
In these cases, it’s pretty easy to feel completely powerless, even though you’re the one handing your money over. Too often you can feel like collateral damage, and that doesn’t sit right with me.
Have you ever found yourself stuck in the middle of a company dispute? What measures did you take to make your voice heard? Do you think warring companies even consider those caught up in the crossfire?