Yes, the league bears responsibility for the Friday night U.S. blackouts.
The CFL has a deal with a company called Trajectory Sports, which markets the U.S. TV rights to the games. This is the same company that distributed the games last season.
Last year, however, all games (including the Friday night ones) were carried by several regional sports networks that are available through both DirecTV and Dish Network.
But this year, Trajectory Sports granted exclusive rights to the TSN HD Friday Night Football games to Dish Network's WorldSport Channel. If they had given WorldSport exclusive rights to only the HD telecasts, there'd be no problem. Then the same regional sports networks (Altitude, Comcast, etc.) that carry the other games could carry the standard-definition telecasts of the Friday Night Football games.
But no. Because Trajectory Sports gave WorldSport exclusive U.S. rights to the Friday Night games, they're now blacked in the U.S. to everyone except the handful of people who have Dish Network, HD equipment, and a subscription to WorldSport.
And no, I'm not going to buy new satellite equipment and switch providers every year, when the CFL gets a different U.S. TV deal.