Count CBS affiliate WDBJ in Roanoke, Va., as the latest possible casualty in the retransmission consent wars, as the station faces a Dec. 31 deadline to strike a carriage deal with Cox Communications.
According to reports, WDBJ could go dark at 11:59 p.m. on Dec. 31 if a retrans deal is not reached. While the station told the Roanoke Times that “talks have not been acrimonious,” the parties have been negotiating for about two months without a deal.
WDBJ is owned by Schurz Communications, a Mishawaka, Ind., broadcaster that owns about 10 stations across the country. If the Roanoke station goes dark for an extended period of time, Cox subscribers in the area could miss out on college football programming and the NFL playoffs.