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Comments on news posted 2012-12-14 08:46:15: DirecTV has taken the unique step of charging some new TV subscribers a sports content surcharge if they subscribe to more than one sports channels. ..

page: 1 · 2

elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink
reply to djrobx

Re: Sports need to be treated like movies

said by djrobx:

Agree, but it would require government intervention. The networks demand inclusion in the base package as part of contract negotiation. If DirecTV didn't agree to that, their customers would be denied the content altogether.

That's simply not true.

Directv could "hold out" as long as it takes, to sever the mandatory bundling.
If that means their customers go without certain content, so be it. Eventually, the networks would realize (feel) the loss and come back with a better offer.

If you've ever been to NAB or CES or met with cable, satellite and broadcast executives, you'd understand why they are so eager to cave and force all subscribers to subsidize ESPN. There is a substantial Sports bias in the boardroom.

itguy05

join:2005-06-17
Carlisle, PA
reply to lakerfan82

said by lakerfan82:

Why do people who don't like sports even subscribe to cable? Can't you get 90% of that content on a mish mash of cheaper subscriptions through Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon on demand? Who cares if you are 1 season behind if you save hundreds, if not thousands per yer?

Lot easier to pay Verizon 1 bill for all my entertainment than a little to Netflix, little to Hulu, and Amazon. And I've got a Free DVR for life from Verizon so I can record in HD, skip commercials and be done with it.

And I'd not want to be 1 season behind when talking with friends about the stuff we watch.

I say put all sports on a package and let them (sports fans) pay for it. If some teams and leagues fold, so be it....

Skippy25

join:2000-09-13
Hazelwood, MO
reply to elray

By as long as it takes I assume you mean until their competitors use this against them to take enough of their subs that they finally give in.

It will take all content providers to do it at the same time to hurt the content owners enough to cause them to rethink their model. Which is exactly why the owners negotiate contracts with long terms and with much different end dates.

The government could easily resolve this by simply stating that all contracts will be paid as agreed until X date and no new contracts can go beyond this date. That x date could be until the last big one expires (Say Comcast is the last to expire in 2/15). They can then couple this with a set mandatory expiration date for those that try to beat the deadline for when this rule comes into effect or if their contracts are already set to far out. Say 12/17 which would then provide all parties (content owners, sports leagues, productions companies) an opportunity to adjust their forecasted revenues and make the needed changes. Then ALL must be renegotiated with a la carte packaging for ALL channels along side of small, medium and large bundles. They can do bundles based on # of channels picked, content owners, themes or any other combination they see fit.



lakerfan82

join:2009-01-30
Corona, CA
reply to itguy05

I guess we are subsidizing eachother then, so its six of one, half a dozen of another... I pay for 100s of channels I don't want just to get the 10 or so sports channels I want. If I could get my local teams online I would happily do that and drop my cable package. I agree that putting them all in their own little bundles would be great as long as I'm not forced to pay for Disney channel, MTV, and the 100s of other channels full of garbage I don't want. A la carte is clearly the answer but the least watched channels will be the ones that go under, not the sports channels. There is a reason ESPN can charge $4/month.



myosh

join:2001-05-03
Cupertino, CA
reply to AZ_OGM

Re: What about part time channels?

I wonder if they're going to try this in the San Francisco Bay Area? We currently have two RSNs... Comcast Sportsnet Bay Area and Comcast Sportsnet California. CSNBA carries the Giants and Warriors while CSNCA carries the A's, Sacramento Kings and the San Jose Sharks (if the NHL doesn't implode).


15444104
Premium
join:2012-06-11
reply to holocron

DirecTV is a RIP OFF!

PAY TV today is a rip off!

When you consider the quality of the content of cable and satellite today I have a hard time believing that ANYONE would want to pay what they are asking for it.

I don't care for sports programming anymore than "bread and circuses". LOL

And the rare time when there are worthwhile programs on the number of interruptions from commercials is INSANE and makes even quality programs unwatchable without using a DVR (more money!)

I voted with my wallet as well. I dumped DirecTV years ago and now only have OTA and the internet.



IowaCowboy
Iowa native
Premium
join:2010-10-16
Springfield, MA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Verizon Broadban..
·Comcast

Opt-out

I am considering the idea of switching back to DirecTV but I am undecided if it is cheaper to just keep my bundle through Comcast.

If I do go with DirecTV, I would gladly ask them to block the sports channels as I don't watch them. As for Comcast, I have to buy a so-called Sports Entertainment Package to get Turner Classic Movies and Fox Movie Channel (which I think is B/S as I my mother only watches those two channels and that is the reason I subscribe to those).


dishrich

join:2006-05-12
Springfield, IL
reply to djrobx

Re: Sports need to be treated like movies

said by djrobx:

Agree, but it would require government intervention. The networks demand inclusion in the base package as part of contract negotiation. If DirecTV didn't agree to that, their customers would be denied the content altogether.

That's exactly the sort of issue that causes those negotiations to drag on forever. Networks demand big money AND essentially demand that they cannot be offered a la carte.

And this VERY same thing is happening on many cable systems, that are now tacking on a similar surcharge for local, broadcast stations, that demand payment for their (already FREE) OTA signal - & which subs CANNOT opt-out of, either. I'm actually surprised either satellite service hasn't done this same thing. (yet)

These are all above-the-line rate increases, pure & simple - since these providers are NOT going to absorb these higher prog costs any longer, of course they're going to pass them to their subs. But this way, these same providers CAN continue to advertise those "teaser-rates", just like phone & cell companies do...

NOVA_UAV_Guy
Premium
join:2012-12-14
Purcellville, VA
Reviews:
·Comcast
reply to elray

said by elray:

That's simply not true.

Directv could "hold out" as long as it takes, to sever the mandatory bundling.
If that means their customers go without certain content, so be it. Eventually, the networks would realize (feel) the loss and come back with a better offer.

I agree in theory, but not in application.

While there would be some like me who would probably not leave DirecTV over holding out like this, there are many who would not be as willing to stay. As an example consider parents of young children who suddenly might find themselves without programming like Nickelodeon or the Disney Channel if something happened around those networks. Depending upon the channel, this could cost DirecTV a bunch of revenue. (What if it was something like ESPN, or TBS, or TNT, that draws a lot of viewers?)

One also need consider that DirecTV's objective in holding out wouldn't be the same as yours or mine. At the end of the day, their focus is money (maximizing bottom line profit) and not altruism (working to achieve a cause for the betterment of others). Thus, in holding out, DirecTV would be likely to fold if offered a smaller price increase - so the scenario that both you and I dream of isn't likely to ever be held out as a serious bargaining chip.

What we really need is for an established company like DirecTV to be willing to take a large financial risk and change its operating model entirely. Unfortunately, I wouldn't hold my breath - as "established company" and "large financial risk" don't go well together these days. Maybe a smart start-up could try to do this (it would be a more likely scenario), but they're not likely to have successes against the content providers since they won't have much bargaining power.


tc1uscg

join:2005-03-09
Saint Clair Shores, MI
reply to jc100

Re: Pass the buck

I have Dish and if they started charging me for something I don't watch or want, I would dump them faster then the dropping gas gage on a F450 pulling 20,000lbs up hill with a head wind. (that's fast for those who have never experienced it)

Now I would pay extra to drop 1/3 of all those channels that try to sell me a wonder bra, give me buns of steal or make my 70 year old mom look 24. But sports? I'm with the rest, I'm not paying extra they should pay me to view some of it's drivel. I'll divert my cash and get faster internet.


elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink
reply to Skippy25

Re: Sports need to be treated like movies

said by Skippy25:

By as long as it takes I assume you mean until their competitors use this against them to take enough of their subs that they finally give in.

It will take all content providers to do it at the same time to hurt the content owners enough to cause them to rethink their model. Which is exactly why the owners negotiate contracts with long terms and with much different end dates.

Any one provider could achieve the desired result by holding out, as long as it takes. But they would have to assume the risk, when in today's climate, it is easier just to pass the cost on.

said by Skippy25:

The government could easily resolve this by simply stating that all contracts will be paid as agreed until X date and no new contracts can go beyond this date.
...
Then ALL must be renegotiated with a la carte packaging for ALL channels along side of small, medium and large bundles. They can do bundles based on # of channels picked, content owners, themes or any other combination they see fit.

I am ever reluctant to suggest that the government should interfere with the marketplace. But I'm not opposed to discussing the possibility of legislation, to motivate the players to be more competitive.

At some point, we need an iTunes Store model for video content leasing, with per-channel/episode/season/day/week/month/year, density and volume pricing options - which should actually yield more revenue than the current structure, while giving the consumer more freedom of choice. But we need industry to build it, not have it dictated from Washington.

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Awareness

I think that DirecTV is trying to make customers more aware of the absolutely INSANE costs of sports programming in particular, but all cable channels in general. The cost of programming is driving the cost of cable and satellite. Unfortunately, it would probably be illegal for all the big providers to join together and set the pricing that the content providers will get. I hope a big provider like Comcast finally gets some backbone, sets a line in the sand, and beats the content providers down to a more reasonable cost.


TBBroadband

join:2012-10-26
Fremont, OH
reply to jc100

Re: Pass the buck

Depending on what rep you talk to- well sales person that gets paid per customer that goes door to door- they do just that. *SMH* And when you question them about this, they claim its not true.



aaronwt
Premium
join:2004-11-07
Woodbridge, VA
reply to lakerfan82

Re: Sports need to be treated like movies

said by lakerfan82:

I guess we are subsidizing eachother then, so its six of one, half a dozen of another... I pay for 100s of channels I don't want just to get the 10 or so sports channels I want. If I could get my local teams online I would happily do that and drop my cable package. I agree that putting them all in their own little bundles would be great as long as I'm not forced to pay for Disney channel, MTV, and the 100s of other channels full of garbage I don't want. A la carte is clearly the answer but the least watched channels will be the ones that go under, not the sports channels. There is a reason ESPN can charge $4/month.

Because Disney forces ESPN on everyone.


afsafd

@comcast.net
reply to NOVA_UAV_Guy

You're deadly wrong. FCC most of the times favor corporate. That is how they get elected.


Happydude32
Premium
join:2005-07-16
kudos:1

I will never understand the haters...

It’s funny to read all of the comments by you anti sports nuts here on this site. You all think everyone hates sports. Well outside of your little bubble, that couldn’t be more false. Baseball is America’s pastime, football is America’s obsession, basketball is doing good, and hockey is a way of life in markets where it is appreciated. Soccer popularity is growing in the US, MMA has exploded and lacrosse is being more noticed. And then you have to most loyal fan base in all of sports, NASCAR. The Super Bowl is the most watched TV event of the year. Sunday and Monday Night Football are at the top of the ratings. The seats are being filled at most sports venues, unless the team really sucks. Here in Buffalo, hockey is huge. When the Sabres are on 3 out of 4 TVs are tuned into the Sabres. With the lockout, the AHL affiliate from Rochester came over to play a game. The Rochester Americans drew a crowd of something like 14,000 people. Not too bad for minor league hockey.

Living in NY State and having four RSNs for all of the teams that claim the state, I don’t care, I just want to watch my teams. The Sabres and Yankees being the big two, but I will tune in for Knicks and Nets coverage although, basketball being the only sport I don’t follow too close, if I’d have a favorite team it would be the LA Clippers, but seeing how they’re on the west coast, their games typically don’t start until 10PM EST and I have to be up for work at 3 in the morning I can’t tune in.

I have full subscriptions to Time Warner Cable and DirecTV with the premium sports packs on each. I subscribe to NHL Center Ice and MLB Extra Innings every year, and this year is my first year with NFL Sunday Ticket. I will never understand why people hate sports, but you haters are in the vast minority.

Go Bills! Go Sabres! Go Yankees! Go Clippers! Go Bandits! Go Americans! Go Bulls! Go Buckeyes! Go Rousch Fenway Racing!
--
iPhone: 4” 1136 X 640 Display, 1.30 GHz Dual Core Processor, 1 GB RAM
MyPhone: 5” 1920 X 1080 Display, 1.50 GHz Quad Core Processor, 2 GB RAM
So tell me, why is exactly is the iPhone so great?
Droid Does What Jobs Won’t Let You Do.



observer13

@sbcglobal.net

Pay TV sucks

I got up around 4:30am this morning and started flipping through HD channels when I was waking up. I can't remember the count, but I think I went through the first 30 stations in a row and every single one of them was an infomercial.

It was just funny... my Pay TV bill is like $110/mo and at least at 4:30am the only thing $110/mo was buying me was infomercials. I mean even big name channels like Comedy Central and Syfy are doing this. I'd love to see someone study pay-tv and figure out exactly what % of the time the channels are first run shows or movies. On some channels like TNT, when they pay to show a movie, they show it like 20 times in a row over a weekend trying to suck every dollar out of it.


BobbyJ

join:2012-12-11
Keller, TX
reply to Happydude32

Re: I will never understand the haters...

Baseball sucks. It's one of the most boring sports to watch that has ever existed (right up there with soccer and golf).

Wish I was rich like you so I could afford to different pay-tv services with premium sports packages. Actually if I was rich I still wouldn't do that (kinda nuts and wasteful).


Happydude32
Premium
join:2005-07-16
kudos:1

That is your opinion. I used to think the same thing about baseball until I actually started watching it and paying attention. While there are too many statistics to follow (No I don’t care how many hits CC Sabathia gives up in the 5th inning of Saturday afternoon games in July when it’s partly cloudy out) and with 162 games, I do not watch every Yankees game (Post season, Yes, regular season, no), I will catch a few a week and find it enjoyable. I’ve been to only one Yankees game in person. Cost me almost $200 a ticket, that was at the box office and to sit in the ‘Batters eye’ section, on a lawn chair behind the large HD video board at the Stadium. One of the best experiences of my life. As soon as I stepped foot into the Stadium the hair on my arm stood on end, a chill went down my spine and I almost shed a tear looking at the most hallowed sports ground in the world.

My problem with soccer is the field of play is too damn big. Soccer is very similar to hockey, which I love, problem is a regulation hockey rink is 200 x 85 feet, soccer is typically 300 x 135. With hockey there is much more action and scoring opportunities due to the smaller playing surface. Scoring doesn’t necessarily equal exciting to me, it’s the opportunity. The most exciting Sabres game I ever watched was a Game 5 of Round 2 of the Playoffs in 2007 against the NY Rangers. It was 0-0 until about 8 minutes to go in the game and then the Sabres tied it with 7.7 sec to go and won in OT. With soccer too many plays happen in the middle of the field and don’t develop as intended as the ball gets closer to the net. And the amount of last minute dramatics are far and few in-between.

No, I’m not really rich, I just chose to spend my money on different things. I know a couple who spends about $250/month on cigarettes. That’s $3000 a year on intentionally taking in harmful substances and killing yourself. I never smoked or had the desire to smoke anything in my life so I can’t wrap my brain around that. When it’s all said and done I pay about $290/month to Time Warner for everything with the best of everything. I get enjoyment out of my super fast broadband, and all of the premium movie and sports content I can consume. I know guys at work who drop over $100 bucks at bars on Friday and Saturday nights. I don’t consume alcohol and I hate the atmosphere of bars and I don’t understand paying that much to poison yourself. I have a bunch of different promos going on with DirecTV, with the Premier package, whole house DVR and NFL Sunday Ticket Max I’m paying $135/month right now. Bottom line, if I was like a good portion of the population and smoked like a chimney and drank like a fish, I’d be spending roughly the same amount as I do for cable and satellite services all while killing myself. I’m not expecting everyone to understand the amount that I pay for this stuff, but at the same time I will never understand why someone would spend as much as a penny on tobacco or alcohol related products. If you choose not to partake in these idiotic activities, I mean no offence, they’re just examples I make every time the subject comes up and I feel people can relate to.

Digital media and entertainment and electronic toys are hobbies, pastimes, interests and obsessions of mine. If you take a look in the mirror at what things make you tick, I’m sure I could criticize you on how you spend your hard earned money just as good.
--
iPhone: 4” 1136 X 640 Display, 1.30 GHz Dual Core Processor, 1 GB RAM
MyPhone: 5” 1920 X 1080 Display, 1.50 GHz Quad Core Processor, 2 GB RAM
So tell me, why is exactly is the iPhone so great?
Droid Does What Jobs Won’t Let You Do.



danawhitaker
Space...The Final Frontier
Premium
join:2002-03-02
Urbandale, IA
reply to lakerfan82

Re: Sports need to be treated like movies

No, you can't, especially not news-related stuff. I discovered this when I was trying to stream coverage from the Connecticut shooting on my PC while my daughter was watching cartoons on TV this weekend. The good news streams seem to be locked behind the cable login paywall now, so I had to dig out my login info.

The Weather Channel stuff that I watch is usually live coverage of breaking weather which may or may not be covered on live streams.

Sometimes I just like to channel surf, too, and find random stuff.

I don't recall someone passing a law that said cable TV exists only for sports fans.
--
You're watching Sports Night on CSC so stick around...



RoushSux

@inashealthcare.org
reply to Happydude32

Re: I will never understand the haters...

It's Roush, not Roushe