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DirecTV Dropped A+E Channels For Some Customers, But You Can Opt-In to Get Them Back

In an odd move that could be a harbinger for the future, DirecTV removed four A+E-owned channels from its lineup that users “weren’t actively interacting with” but users could opt back into the channels at no additional cost. This appears to affect only satellite subscribers, not those who use DIRECTV STREAM.

The four channels in question are History, A&E, Vice, and Lifetime, and could be missing from your channel lineup. The channels were dropped from the “Entertainment” tier for new subscribers on October 1st, but existing subscribers will have to opt-in to keep them.

In a statement to The Streamable, a DIRECTV spokesperson said:

“We recently informed customers who have not actively engaged in History and other select channels that the content will no longer appear in their lineup. Any interested customers who are not seeing it yet want to add it back at no additional cost can visit www.directv.com/channel-opt-in.”

To opt back in, simply log into your DirecTV account and visit this link. According to DirecTV, existing customers have until June 15, 2022, to keep the channels.

DTV STREAM Fubo Hulu Philo Sling TV YouTube
Free Trial Free Trial Free 3-Day Trial Free Trial Get 50% OFF Sign Up
$79.99 $94.99 $76.99 $25 $40 $40 $72.99
A&E + $29 - -
History + $29 - -
Lifetime + $29 - -
Vice TV + $29 - -

This isn’t the first time this has happened. In 2019, DIRECTV NOW dropped Nick Jr. for new customers, but existing customers could chat in to support to keep the channel.

The news started circulating when Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa mentioned via Twitter that he couldn’t watch the History Channel due to DirecTV dropping the network. Likely, Grassley was an “Entertainment” tier member who lost the network that way, since he remarked that he “had to subscribe anew” to access it.

Since then, others have reported losing access to the History Channel, A&E, Vice, and Lifetime via official emails from DirecTV.

When you do confirm you’d like to keep your channels, you get this confirmation screen.

This could be the start of an unfortunate practice for cable companies that offer fewer channels and allow users to opt-in “at no additional cost” — but don’t charge any less if the channels are removed. This often occurs when networks and providers are at a standstill when it comes to carriage deals.

Currently, Comcast Xfinity customers are experiencing this with MSG Networks, the New York-New Jersey-Connecticut RSN that shows most of New York and New Jersey’s sports teams. While the channels are blacked out, Comcast isn’t reducing cable prices, something MSG has recently called them out on, saying the provider should give their afflicted customers a monthly rebate.

DIRECTV STREAM

DIRECTV STREAM is a live TV streaming service, which is essentially the streaming version of the DIRECTV service. All packages include local channels and at least 31 of the top 35 cable channels. New subscribers can get a free Gemini streaming device from the company, in which case the service is called “DIRECTV via Internet.”

DIRECTV STREAM starts at $79.99 / month for their Entertainment package. You can upgrade to their Choice package, which begins at $108.99 / month, that includes your local RSN and HBO Max for three months. They also have an Ultimate ($119.99) for 130 channels and Premier ($164.99) for 140 channels. In addition to not having a contract, there are no extra RSN fees or Broadcast TV fee.

The service includes an Unlimited DVR on all packages and unlimited simultaneous at-home streams.

The service was previously called AT&T TV.

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Jeff Kotuby is a contributing writer to The Streamable who specializes in sports, music, and all things Japanese media. He cut the cord in 2017 and has spent the last six years of his career writing for technology, entertainment, and healthcare websites. He's a lifelong Philadelphia Eagles and Anaheim Ducks fan, but also enjoys watching animated shows from the '90s.

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