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US Sen. McCain working on 'a la carte' cable TV bill - Page 3

post #81 of 138
Now if he could just stop his VCR from flashing 12:00.
post #82 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

**** McCain. He's the last person on earth I'd want setting any kind of direction for this. Although he's clueless about absolutely everything, I figure this area is one in which he's the most clueless.

This is a puzzling post.

 

What does your disdain for McCain have to do with the merits (or lack thereof) of a la carte cable pricing!?

 

Add: Interesting that the four-letter word is still in the original post, but hidden in the quote in my reply!

post #83 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


Do you know how many small city professional teams survive only because of revenue sharing? More choices is always better than less.

 

If they're not offering anything that people are willing to pay for, then what's the point of them existing? It's like saying the Zune should get to survive because it has to share revenue with the iPod.

post #84 of 138

Yep, and everytime this comes up, all the small channels and the people who watch them, especially those that cater to a particular race/ethnicity (BET), foreign language channels (spanish language) and religion (all the christian channels) scream bloody murder and attempt to block any attempt at A-la-carte pricing...

post #85 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by mistergsf View Post

What's to stop the cable companies from charging even more for a la carte and and essentially still ripping us off?


Why blame just the cable companies? Disney, HBO, etc. are the ones charging cable companies. And how about the shows themselves? Must the NFL charge Disney/ESPN billions for Monday Night Football for one fame a week?

post #86 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

I'm sorry, I don't know what a "small city pro team" is. Are you talking about sports? Production crews?

Sports
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post #87 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by winterspan View Post

Yep, and everytime this comes up, all the small channels and the people who watch them, especially those that cater to a particular race/ethnicity (BET), foreign language channels (spanish language) and religion (all the christian channels) scream bloody murder and attempt to block any attempt at A-la-carte pricing...


And don't forget the lame hunting and fishing channel too.

post #88 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post

If they're not offering anything that people are willing to pay for, then what's the point of them existing? It's like saying the Zune should get to survive because it has to share revenue with the iPod.

Problem is that there just isn't enough people in a smaller city.
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post #89 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

It's interesting that while a la carte is desired for television channels, it is absolutely not desired for the Internet. 

 

 

There's obviously a fundamental difference somewhere, but can someone articulate it? 

 

Wow thats wierd, you are paying xtras for data coming from various website? Note that unlimited data for some TV stream websites could be worth it.

post #90 of 138

1. ABC

2. NBC

3. Fox

4. CBS

5. ESPN

6. AMC

7. TBS

8. TNT

9. FX

10. ESPN 2

11. A&E

12. ABC Family

13. NFL Network

14. HBO

15. CW

 

I'm pretty sure my wife and I could survive just fine with only these 15 channels. 95% of our tv watching comes from these stations. 

post #91 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


Problem is that there just isn't enough people in a smaller city.

What does a smaller city have to do with it? 

post #92 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post

1. ABC

2. NBC

3. Fox

4. CBS

5. ESPN

6. AMC

7. TBS

8. TNT

9. FX

10. ESPN 2

11. A&E

12. ABC Family

13. NFL Network

14. HBO

15. CW

 

I'm pretty sure my wife and I could survive just fine with only these 15 channels. 95% of our tv watching comes from these stations. 

 

From the experience I have with "a la carte", they will never included premium movie channels has "one choice" in the line up.  Those channels are bundle seperatly here. For example, I pay 24$ for the basic mandatory package and 18$ for 15 channels of my choice. But since I want HBO and The movie network, I took that package which is an additionnal $12. 

 

But, with all that I have exactly all the channels I want from there line-up and most of the channels come with "on demand" so my TV packages is really good.  All its missing is an iOS TV with itunes rentals, games and apps I would be satisfied.

 

If Apple could make a deal with Bell and integrated everything in iOS with either a box or a full TV panel it would be perfect.


Edited by herbapou - 5/9/13 at 11:32am
post #93 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

You're are assuming Apple goes without the ISP's.   I am not so sure of that. I personnally thinks Apple is or at least was trying to go with Cable partnership.

I cant see how they truly get the Apple TV as the primary communication device in the HEC without some sort of synergy with your local content and internet provider(s).

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post #94 of 138

I see so many comments saying this should not pass because it interferes with the free market... what free market? In the free market we would not be forced to pay for channels we don't want just to watch one that we like. I shouldn't have to pay $10 for Lifetime and ABC Family when all I just want is to get Disney Channel for my kids, and once they grow up I'd like to watch ABC alone and not need to pay for Disney Channel. THAT is free market. Additionally, the concept of free market would allow for competitors, but where I live I have no other option than subscribing to TWC.

 

If I only want to watch HBO, I should pay just for HBO, not a cable package too. Free market means a la carte. I mean, I'd be happy paying just for BBC America, USA, HBO and ESPN. Just four channels... supposing a max cost of $5 (which is ridiculous) a month for the basic ones and $20 for HBO, I'd be paying $35 plus fees. Not $60 or $80.

 

Sometimes legislation is needed to ensure there is a free market. There cannot be a free market when a company holds a monopoly, and basically thats what cable providers are, monopolies.

Just in case, I am happy with my bunny ears and my subscription to MLB.tv, Hulu, Netflix plus a Season Pass for Doctor Who and Game of Thrones, but a season pass is not the same thing as watching it live. I want to watch it the minute it comes out, not a while after....

post #95 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by paxman View Post

No No - you misunderstood. No offence taken. I was probably being political. Hard not to. 1wink.gif

Ok we're good 1smile.gif
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Been using Apple since Apple ][ - Long on AAPL so biased
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post #96 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post

What does a smaller city have to do with it? 

Smaller revenue pool. How often do the Kansas City Royals sell out their stadiuml? Yet Yankee Stadium is sold out every weekend the Yankees are home.
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post #97 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by pt123 View Post


Why blame just the cable companies? Disney, HBO, etc. are the ones charging cable companies. And how about the shows themselves? Must the NFL charge Disney/ESPN billions for Monday Night Football for one fame a week?

If ESPN is willing to pay that then why not? I wouldn't be surprised if they make double what it costs them.
"Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example" Mark Twain
"Just because something is deemed the law doesn't make it just" - SolipsismX
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"Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example" Mark Twain
"Just because something is deemed the law doesn't make it just" - SolipsismX
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post #98 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


Again, that's how small city pro teams survive.

Small City pro teams have revenue sharing because they are part of a league. If one team fails to generate enough money and dies the whole order of the league is disturbed. For example, if you're going to a Yankees game you are supporting the MLB, the Yankees are part of this organization, and since it is in the best interest of the association to mantain the same amount of teams, then there is revenue sharing. But I shouldnt be made to pay MTV when all I want to do is watch Animal Planet.

post #99 of 138

For all the people calling for the death of broadcast and cable TV and switching to internet only viewing, the advantage of watching shows online will be for the TV studios, not the viewers.  More forced ads.  No DVR to skip past commercials. If their web page crashes or decides to spontaneously reload the page, you will have to start watching the video all over from the beginning, including all the forced ads.  I'm suprised the TV studios didn't make a bigger push to internet viewing sooner.

post #100 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by alexmarrero View Post

I see so many comments saying this should not pass because it interferes with the free market... what free market? In the free market we would not be forced to pay for channels we don't want just to watch one that we like. I shouldn't have to pay $10 for Lifetime and ABC Family when all I just want is to get Disney Channel for my kids, and once they grow up I'd like to watch ABC alone and not need to pay for Disney Channel. THAT is free market. Additionally, the concept of free market would allow for competitors, but where I live I have no other option than subscribing to TWC.

 

 

That's not what "free market" means. Free market means that people/businesses are free to offer whatever products/services they want, and sell them for what they want, and consumers are free to buy those products or services if they want. It generally results in the best products at the best prices...more so than in any other system.

 

A free market allows a cable company to require you to buy bundles instead of ala carte channels. A free market lets you decline to pay for them, and seek entertainment elsewhere. A free market lets someone else come up with new technology and business models that make the cable company obsolete, and run it out of business, unless it responds to the competitive pressure by dropping prices, increasing consumer choice, etc. 

 

Of course, there are many anti-free-market forces operating in the cable business. For instance, the fact that the government seems to grant "territories" to cable operators, where one neighborhood is served by one company, and another neighborhood is served by another company, effectively killing competition in any one neighborhood. Cable companies should be protected from government meddling in their products/services, but should have no government-sactioned benefits either...

post #101 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by j1h15233 View Post

If they're not offering anything that people are willing to pay for, then what's the point of them existing? It's like saying the Zune should get to survive because it has to share revenue with the iPod.

Two things to ponder: 1) all use of the public airways is governed by the public interest doctrine (if not there'd be no news and only cartoons and reality TV), 2) by your reasoning Shakespeare should not be given any space on library and bookstore shelves because it doesn't get read by enough people
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post #102 of 138
This will happen eventually by organic market occurrences. Politicians stay away!
post #103 of 138

Slowly but surely it is happening. Two of my hometowns in Tennessee already have their own fiber-optic networks online. It's coming, don't worry. 

 

--- EDIT: Quotes didn't carry for some reason...

post #104 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by cornchip View Post

This will happen eventually by organic market occurrences. Politicians stay away!
That might be true if the market were organic, but the cable market is filled with preservatives. Politicians paid to preserve the status quo.
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post #105 of 138
I think the concept of "channels" is becoming obsolete anyway.

Let's say someday you are able to subscribe a la carte and choose the 10 or 15 channels you actually want.

1. Your cable bill may not become cheaper... since the cable company will likely be charging more per channel.

2. You are still paying for those channels even when you're asleep or at work.

Even if you only have 15 channels... those channels are still pumping out 360 hours of programming every single day. How much of that will you actually watch?

Why not just pay for individual shows and forget the entire concept of channels?
post #106 of 138
Now if we can also get him to add that studios/nets can't withhold legal downloading for more than say 90 days or when the home video comes out whichever is sooner. So we can stop having places like Warner's not allowing TV shows on iTunes etc. and for streaming where they do it by season it has to be up by the time the home video disks are out.

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post #107 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by mstone View Post

McCain is viewed as a liberal by the ultra conservative Republican leaders. He occasionally comes up with a reasonable idea or two but he always caves in and rolls on his back when his handlers disapprove of his consumer advocacy tendencies.

Irrelevant.  I can call a duck a horse, but that doesn't make it one.

 

As for a'la carte, most cable channels today are part a larger network of channels.  Animal Planet mentioned above is one of the Discovery channels.  Selling channels by network would probably be a workable compromise.  This would allow people who don't want sports programming to jettison ESPN (the most expensive component of your cable bill, BTW), people with diabetes to get rid of the Disney channels, or people with function brain cells to say adios to the shambling remains of the "History" channel.

 

I wonder if there have been any polls conducted to find out which channels people are most anxious get get rid of?

post #108 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post


Two things to ponder: 1) all use of the public airways is governed by the public interest doctrine (if not there'd be no news and only cartoons and reality TV), 2) by your reasoning Shakespeare should not be given any space on library and bookstore shelves because it doesn't get read by enough people

News and Shakespeare can disappear for all I care. Seriously though, how many other businesses survive without making a product people want or having some type of profit? Should a channel like QVC survive because everyone wants to pay for ESPN or ABC? Quality programming won't go away because people will pay for it but the filler channels will produce something worthwhile or die.

post #109 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


Smaller revenue pool. How often do the Kansas City Royals sell out their stadiuml? Yet Yankee Stadium is sold out every weekend the Yankees are home.

That's not how this works. If 10 people in podunk, Kansas pay for a channel and another 1 million pay for that channel in New York, then the channel is successful.

post #110 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don108 View Post

The REAL problem, IMO, is that cable companies make exclusive deals with municipalities and cities so that only one company supplies an entire area. That's like having only one airline coming into your airport. If you don't like their service or their price...too bad. You have no choice. There is no actual competition.

There is that too. We need an end to this and/or Hulu, iTunes etc being deemed as cable companies themselves so they can play with in the rules or something

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post #111 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


If ESPN is willing to pay that then why not? I wouldn't be surprised if they make double what it costs them.


I agree. Unfortunately, some people complain about cable cost and want ala carte pricing without factoring in this part of the cost.

post #112 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by alexmarrero View Post


If I only want to watch HBO, I should pay just for HBO, not a cable package too. Free market means a la carte. I mean, I'd be happy paying just for BBC America, USA, HBO and ESPN. Just four channels... supposing a max cost of $5 (which is ridiculous) a month for the basic ones and $20 for HBO, I'd be paying $35 plus fees. Not $60 or $80.

 

Why stop there at just one channel? Wouldn't true free market be the ability to pay for just the show I want to watch? If I just want Sopranos, why should I pay for the rest of the HBO shows that I do not watch?

 

And why would there be a max cost? Free market means free to charge the amount to make a profit, don't buy it if you do not like the price or product. The studio will charge whatever they need to make a profit.

post #113 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by pt123 View Post

Why stop there at just one channel? Wouldn't true free market be the ability to pay for just the show I want to watch? If I just want Sopranos, why should I pay for the rest of the HBO shows that I do not watch?

 

And why would there be a max cost? Free market means free to charge the amount to make a profit, don't buy it if you do not like the price or product. The studio will charge whatever they need to make a profit.

 

That pretty much itunes business model. Problem is if I would have to buy each show I watch on itunes it would cost my a lot more than my cable bill.

post #114 of 138

Why?  Leave it alone.  This is not the role of Govt.  Let the free market take care of the problem, all this bill will do is muck up the works.  We're already heading in a a-la-cart direction - it's called the internet.  How about this - kill the bill that's seeking to tax the internet.

post #115 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by rob53 View Post

I don't consider this small stuff. It's obvious the free market is not working when you consider the high cost of cable.

 

That's not obvious at all. It's not even obvious that Cable TV systems, companies and markets are really a free market at all. For one thing, cable companies benefit from any number of special benefits and competitive protections and monopoly powers granted by local municipalities. However, at the end of the day, cable TV is small stuff.

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post #116 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by Don108 View Post

The REAL problem, IMO, is that cable companies make exclusive deals with municipalities and cities so that only one company supplies an entire area. That's like having only one airline coming into your airport. If you don't like their service or their price...too bad. You have no choice. There is no actual competition.

Until exclusive deals are ended there will be no competition. The cable companies will scream, "It's what the people want. Let the market decide!" but they will fight tooth and nail against any real competition.

Where are the free market defenders? Why aren't they complaining about this obvious monopolistic and unfair marketing? Until there is true competition we will pay more and get less than any other industrialized country in the world.

 

+1 this

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post #117 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by sessamoid View Post

If any of you honestly think the cable and broadband industry even vaguely resemble open and free competition, you need to have your heads examined. Insanely high costs of entry would be enough to distort free market economics even before you get into the oligopolies that dominate modern media production and distribution, or the sanctioned MONOPOLIES that are regional cable companies.

There's nothing about the current situation that suggest that the "free market" is operating optimally in this area.

 

+1 this

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post #118 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by msimpson View Post

 

You don't get it.   This is about getting some "free market" back into the equation, and not more "big government".   Governments are what gave the cable companies near monopoly positions in most markets.  This is an attempt to force cable providers to provide consumers choice.  

 

Quit trying to draw lines and just lumping people into categories based on what the mainstream media tells you they should be.  Think deeper and understand the real issues.

 

You should think deeper as well. This is not about getting some "free market" (appropriately quoted by you) into the equation. It is about less free market. More free market would be banning the local (government granted) monopolies that most cable companies enjoy. You don't solve the restriction of the free market by government action by using more restriction of free market by still more government action. Well, you can...but that's not "getting some 'free market' back into the equation."


Edited by MJ1970 - 5/9/13 at 2:57pm

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post #119 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post

Why does it strike you as odd? He is a Republican. What strikes me odd is that he's for the consumer and not big business.

 

I'd bet money that he's for some other big business that you're just not seeing.

 

As an unrelated example, I'll bet that Mr. McCain is not going to be introducing legislation anytime soon that would allow alcohol producers and retailers to deal directly with one another.


Edited by MJ1970 - 5/9/13 at 2:54pm

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post #120 of 138
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

The "invisible hand" (a lovely fairy tale we like to tell our children) was amputated at the shoulder at birth.

 

I wouldn't say that the proverbial invisible hand is a "lovely fairy tale" but, indeed it has been amputated. Indeed, if it were a fairly tale, the latter part of your extension of the analogy is nonsensical.


Edited by MJ1970 - 5/9/13 at 2:52pm

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