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knarf829

join:2007-06-02
kudos:1

1 recommendation

reply to opinionmine

Re: New TV Package: Select HD

said by opinionmine:

The NYT yesterday had a piece about how sports programing is raising prices significantly even for people who watch no sports.

There is even a call for governmental intervention.

When is there not? Two dudes went to a government court against Subway because some of their footlongs were 11 inches. Calls for government action have ceased to be indicative of there being an actual problem.

said by opinionmine:

The status quo remains, if you want/need some popular and other indispensable channels you are still forced to pay for sports you don't watch.

There are television channels that are "indispensable?" That's an interesting view.

I'm forced to pay for hundreds of channels I don't watch. We all are. We're buying a service, not specific programming on that service.

So we go all a la carte and start paying for each channel. But wait, why should I pay for an entire channel when there are - like - only 3 series on that channel that I actually watch? Why is the channel the bottom line? Why is Verizon forcing me to pay for series I don't watch just to get the series on that channel that I do watch?

So now we're paying for just the actual series that we watch. But wait, this particular episode of a series doesn't hold my interest. Why should I pay for episodes I don't like of a series that I do like in order to have access to the series at all? I mean, on Amazon I can pick and choose which episodes I want to see. Why is Verizon ripping me off by making me pay for an entire series when I only want some of the episodes.

So now we're down to paying for just individual episodes of series that we like on channels that we like, free from any cost for anything that may not be of interest to us. But wait, each highly targeted incredibly relevant-to-me episode of these series is, like, $2.99. If I watch three shows a day for a month, that's $269. Gosh, I wish someone would bundle together all of these episodes, series and channels into affordable packages so I could cut down on some of my costs. I wish I could just turn on my TV and flip through hundreds of available channels instead of always having to decide exactly what I want to watch all the time.

If you want to pay for specific programming, cut the cord and get a Roku. Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Streaming are all there.

opinionmine

join:2006-03-10

2 edits

I was writing personally.

CNBC, for one example, is indispensable to me.

But that's not the point. We watch maybe 10 cable channels in total but pay for hundreds we never watch. That's the way it is and everyone accepts that fact.

Here specifically Verizon is attempting to sell this package as a package without sports. Something that to me, at least, would be attractive. But, that's not what it is, it's a package without sports and so much more. Why take Comedy Central and financial networks out of that package unless your are engineering the package to seem attractive to non sport fans but in actuality make sure it becomes less attractive for other reasons.


nfotiu

join:2009-01-25
reply to knarf829

The problem is the handful of sports channels are totaling about $20-$30 a month in carriage fees, whereas the rest of the hundred or so channels together are probably less than 5 bucks.

Also complicating things is the government is already involved, and in many cases forcing the cable companies to carry sports networks they don't want to carry, and to carry them in their basic tier.

Vertical integration is the other factor that is taking away from the competitive balance.

Not saying that government intervention is necessarily the answer, as I think this model will come crumbling down on its own.

This whole system though is distributing wealth in a way that is probably not the healthiest though. LA Dodgers are now making $350 million a year on a tv deal. Considering an average of only 50,000 people watch those games, it is siphoning a hugely disproportionate amount from cable tv subscribers to baseball players, owners and others getting their cut along the way.

For the record, I am a sports fan, and would subscribe to the channels of my teams. I just think this whole sports business model is bordering on corruptness and needs to be changed one way or the other.


knarf829

join:2007-06-02
kudos:1

said by nfotiu:

For the record, I am a sports fan, and would subscribe to the channels of my teams. I just think this whole sports business model is bordering on corruptness and needs to be changed one way or the other.

Guess what - once you guys successfully jettison sports channels to pricey a la carte status, something else is going to be "the most expensive content" and calls to excise that content to its own package will commence.

It will end as it did in my example, with maybe some lonely single dude somewhere who hates sports paying less than he does now, but families of members with diverse interests paying much more. The majority of cable subscribers are families with members of diverse interests. They'll lose.

nfotiu

join:2009-01-25

I think that there are more than just a couple lonely people who don't watch sports. Only one out of a hundred people paying $60 a year for the new Dodger's deal actually watch Dodger's game.

The easy thing to do is legislate any channel with a carriage fee over 50 cents or a dollar must be offered a la carte, and treat them the same as HBO, Showtime, etc. By my last research, I think that would only include ESPN, RSNs, TBS and TNT.

No reason they shouldn't be treated the same when they are now charging more than some of the premium channels.


knarf829

join:2007-06-02
kudos:1

1 edit

said by nfotiu:

I think that there are more than just a couple lonely people who don't watch sports. Only one out of a hundred people paying $60 a year for the new Dodger's deal actually watch Dodger's game.

The "lonely single" aspect was to represent that his packages wouldn't need to include anything other than his specific one-man narrow interests because he has no family. Not that only lonely people don't like sports.

You are aware that there are teams other than the Dodgers and sports other than baseball, right? And not all of them take place in one of the largest and most expensive TV markets.

said by nfotiu:

The easy thing to do is legislate any channel with a carriage fee over 50 cents or a dollar must be offered a la carte, and treat them the same as HBO, Showtime, etc. By my last research, I think that would only include ESPN, RSNs, TBS and TNT.

No reason they shouldn't be treated the same when they are now charging more than some of the premium channels.

Oh, goody. More government.

nfotiu

join:2009-01-25

There are examples across the board in all sports in all areas. Fact is that a hundred million people are paying 200-300 dollars a year to sports programming they don't watch, and are forced to pay it if they want cable tv.

And you are ignoring the fact that the government is not already hip deep in this, and has played a pretty big part in creating this mess. Look up the FCC forcing North Carolina cable companies to carry MASN even though not enough people were watching it to even register in the ratings.



matcarl
Premium
join:2007-03-09
Franklin Square, NY
reply to opinionmine

said by opinionmine:

I was writing personally.

CNBC, for one example, is indispensable to me.

But that's not the point. We watch maybe 10 cable channels in total but pay for hundreds we never watch. That's the way it is and everyone accepts that fact.

Here specifically Verizon is attempting to sell this package as a package without sports. Something that to me, at least, would be attractive. But, that's not what it is, it's a package without sports and so much more. Why take Comedy Central and financial networks out of that package unless your are engineering the package to seem attractive to non sport fans but in actuality make sure it becomes less attractive for other reasons.

It's true though, this package is being promoted as if it just excludes the sports channels. There are several others missing. They should have made two new packages then.

knarf829

join:2007-06-02
kudos:1

3 edits
reply to nfotiu

said by nfotiu:

And you are ignoring the fact that the government is not already hip deep in this, and has played a pretty big part in creating this mess. Look up the FCC forcing North Carolina cable companies to carry MASN even though not enough people were watching it to even register in the ratings.

So when the government screws something up the answer is more government? I'm sure they'll get it right this time.

Classic.

No one is paying any amount for any programming except HBO, Showtime, etc. Cable TV customers are paying for a service, not for content. You're paying for access.

Man, I went to that concert and paid $70 for songs I don't like and only $10 for songs I do like. What a ripoff.

said by matcarl:

It's true though, this package is being promoted as if it just excludes the sports channels. There are several others missing.

This I'll agree with. They should not market it as their sports-free solution. They should market it as a budget package stripped of the most expensive content.

opinionmine

join:2006-03-10

That's patently absurd.

If one was not paying for content there would not be different tiers.

More absurd is the seeming arbitrary randomness of that content in the first couple of tiers.


knarf829

join:2007-06-02
kudos:1

said by opinionmine:

That's patently absurd.

OK prove me an idiot and post the PDF of your bill for CNN, FX and Discovery HD programming. Or Cartoon Network (either SD or HD will be fine). Or MTV (again 1,2,Hits, Jams, whichever).

opinionmine

join:2006-03-10

Seriously? You need proof?

You are not aware that one pays more for one tier then another?

You're not aware that the difference between tiers is content not "service"?


knarf829

join:2007-06-02
kudos:1

said by opinionmine:

Seriously? You need proof?

You are not aware that one pays more for one tier then another?

You're not aware that the difference between tiers is content not "service"?

So just go ahead and show me the charges broken out for the individual content and we'll be all set. Show me your Music channel charge and your home improvement channel charge and your news channel charge. Show me individual channel charges.

And, if this is true and you're already charged based on content and not access, exactly what's the problem your crying to the government to rush in and solve? Individual line-item charges? Seriously?

opinionmine

join:2006-03-10

You're obviously confused, and I will respond no further to you.

Where did I seek Governmental intervention?

I look at this issue through two conflicting eyes. As a consumer and as an investor. I've owned stock in Comcast for a couple of years. The games these companies play has benefited me financially much more then I would pay in service in many many decades, and that's all good.

As a consumer I dislike what they do.


nfotiu

join:2009-01-25
reply to knarf829

You can spout all your libertarian ideologies you like, it doesn't mean you are right. I see the government's role to prevent anti competitive practices that threaten free commerce. When all suppliers work together to ensure you can only get cheap products if you buy the much more expensive ones then to me that is anti competitive.


knarf829

join:2007-06-02
kudos:1

There are already laws against anti-competitive behavior. If you feel your rights have been violated in this respect, bring action against those who have violated them.

Back here in the real world, I'm having trouble thinking of an industry that is more competitive than home delivery of entertainment video. You have two satellite companies. You have a cable company. A lot of places have more than one "cable" type company. You have Hulu Plus. You have Netflix. You have Amazon Instant Streaming. For movies there is Vudu.

Cable and satellite companies have the challenge of bringing people the content they want using the technology they prefer at a price they're willing to pay. This model developed because this is the model that best delivers that.


urkelOs

join:2008-03-02
reply to knarf829

Pricing structure is not purely based on service either; otherwise, VZ would charge extra for HD vs. SD feeds of identical content.