How Blackout Restrictions Work
Our agreements with broadcasters sometimes require us to blackout sporting events. These blackout rules are controlled by the leagues, sports associations, and networks that purchase the rights to the broadcasts. Often times, if a game is blacked out on one of your channels, you may be able to view the game on another DISH or local broadcast channel.
If your game is blacked out, we have a tool called Game Finder that will make it easier to determine which channel the game you are looking for is being broadcast on.
These occur when a local channel, or Regional Sports Network (RSNET), purchases the rights to the event in the designated geographical location or ZIP code (DMA). In these cases, the event will not be available to any channel that is outside of that region.
Games are occasionally blacked out on national sports coverage channels such as ESPN, ESPN2, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, TNT, etc.
Regional Market Blackouts
These occur when a national channel such as ESPN, ESPN2, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, TNT, etc., purchases the rights to the event. In these cases, the event will not be available to any regional channel within that team's territory unless a regional channel purchases the rights to the event.
Each sports league determines team territories differently. For example, an NBA team and an MLB team from the same market may have drastically different local blackout areas. Blackouts on RSNETs are not based on arena sell-outs.
Event Specific Details
Pay-Per-View Season Ticket Blackouts
Blackout restrictions apply to all games offered on DISH Season Ticket events. Such blackout restrictions are designed to protect the television rights holders in the competing teams' respective home markets. Blackouts are not based on arena sell-outs.
ESPN Game Plan - College Football
Blackouts are determined on a per-game basis and the information on those games is available the week preceding the game.
Blackouts will apply to the markets in which the fight takes place, unless the fight is sold out. If the fight is sold out, blackouts will not be implemented.