DirecTV customers lost all Viacom channels Tuesday night at midnight.

The reason for the blackout is DirecTV and Viacom failed to come to terms on a new contract . . . and the impasse extended beyond a midnight deadline.

DirecTV subscribers lost a chunk of channels, including:  Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, MTV, BET, VH1, CMT, Logo, Spike, TV Land, MTV2, VH1 Classic, Palladia, Nick Jr., NickToons and TeenNick.

DirecTV has about 20 million subscribers throughout the country.

Including the HD, it carries a total of 26 Viacom-owned channels.

It's unclear how long the blackout might last.  DirecTV says Viacom wants to add a "carriage fee of more than 30%" . . . but Viacom says they proposed a fair deal where each subscriber would only have to pay, quote, "a couple [more] pennies per day."

I'm a DirecTV customer.  I called DirecTV to discuss options, as I am paying for those channels and not receiving them.   They offered me 6 months of free Encore, Showtime and Starz... plus a $10 bill credit for 3 months.    Yeah, I may have over-exaggerated my disappointment just a bit, but I'm paying for something I'm not receiving.  Hey, I might have wanted to watch something on BET or Palladia tonight! You never know! lol.

Joking aside, I can see both sides of the coin here.  Viacom is a business, they want to make money.  DirecTV is a business that relies on customers and to attract and keep customers, they need to keep their bills low.  So I'll be keeping a watchful eye on this one.  I hope the blackout doesn't last too long.

If you are a DirecTV customer,  you might as well call them up and see what they can offer you.  If you are out of your contract term, you have quite a bit of leverage to get a great offer.  If you are in your contract term (like I am),  you may get a similar offer that I received.  1-800-DIRECTV.