DirecTV and Newsmax reached a deal to stream the conservative news network on its satellite service once again, the companies announced Wednesday.
Newsmax was taken off DirecTV airwaves in January after negotiations broke down over renewal of the network’s contract. The decision to cancel the network provoked allegations of political bias from U.S. lawmakers in February.
“DirecTV’s decision follows recent revelations of collusion between Big Tech companies and Democrat officials to label conservative speech as ‘misinformation’ and censor it,” wrote a group of Republican senators to the satellite service last month. “The silencing of conservative speech at the request of government officials is a direct assault on free speech and a threat to democracy.”
Newsmax also accused the California-based television service of engaging in partisan censorship.
“This is the second time in the past year AT&T has moved to cancel a conservative channel, with DirecTV deplatforming OAN in April,” read a post on the Newsmax website in January.
After the two companies reached an agreement to resume service Wednesday, however, Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy reversed the network’s allegations of partisan bias.
“DIRECTV’s position has been that its negotiations were always based on financial considerations and their commitment to providing its customers with diversified programming options at the best value,” Rudy said in a statement. “Newsmax recognizes and accepts DIRECTV’s position and believes that it is committed to having diverse voices on its platforms, including conservative ones like Newsmax.”
DirecTV deflected accusations of bias by announcing the same month Newsmax was taken off its streaming package that another conservative network would be offered to consumers. The First, home to prominent pundits Dana Loesch and Buck Sexton, is now available to DirecTV customers.
Newsmax will return to DirecTV’s lineup without an upcharge for existing subscribers. The terms of the agreement between Newsmax and DirecTV were not made public.