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One America News Network’s days may be numbered after being dropped by Verizon

A reporter with One America News Network works at a campaign rally with President Donald Trump at Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport on Sept. 25, 2020, in Newport News, Virginia.  (Drew Angerer/Getty Images North America/TNS)
By Stephen Battaglio Los Angeles Times

LOS ANGELES – San Diego-based One America News, the strident right-wing cable channel, may soon be fighting for its survival after being dropped by another major cable operator.

The Daily Beast reported OAN failed to reach a new carriage agreement with Verizon, the last major cable operator to run the channel. DirecTV, which provided the bulk of OAN’s distribution, dropped the channel earlier this year.

Verizon confirmed the move in a statement that said OAN will no longer be on its Fios TV service as of July 31. The statement indicated that politics did not factor into its decision to part ways with OAN, which is owned by tech entrepreneur Robert Herring.

“Our negotiation with OAN has been a typical, business as usual carriage negotiation like those that routinely happen between content distribution and content providers,” the company said. “The negotiations were focused on economics, as they always are, but OAN failed to agree to fair terms.”

OAN did not respond to a request for comment.

OAN is not completely out of options. It’s still available online as a livestream available with a subscription. It also offers its programming to over-the-air TV stations, which can carry a version called OAN Plus on their digital subchannels.

The company made its OAN Plus service available in Pittsburgh on WOSD owned by the Videohouse. According to a press release, the service is available in more than 10 million television households.

But with scant advertising support, it would be difficult for OAN Plus to be a viable business as an over-the-air network. Cable carriage typically comes with subscriber fees, which provide the bulk of the revenue for established news channels such as CNN, Fox News and MSNBC.

OAN has been the most ardent supporter of former President Donald Trump and his false claims that the 2020 election was stolen from him through voter fraud.

Like Fox News and Newsmax, OAN is being sued for defamation by voting technology companies Smartmatic and Dominion. Both firms allege their reputations were damaged by false statements presented by anchors and guests who echoed Trump’s claims.