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

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Comments

  • Reply 61 of 148
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    msimpson wrote: »
    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.

    Amazing. You've completely ignored my comments regarding the free market being pushed out decades ago, the fact the free market is already breaking down the old models, and that the cable companies will still have a lock-in in most market since they supply the access. :no:
  • Reply 62 of 148
    scprofessorscprofessor Posts: 218member


    I'm still waiting on the savings from the govmint breakup of Ma Bell. Of course instead of paying $100 to Ma Bell, I get my choice of paying $120 to a multitude of companies. 

  • Reply 63 of 148
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,980member
    Unbundling the channels is the wrong way to do it. They need to unbundle the network allowing competitors to provide services over their networks. It happened to the telcos, and the same should happen with the cable companies.
  • Reply 64 of 148
    alexmitalexmit Posts: 112member
    This is a good thing although it's sad that the government is involved in making it happen. If Cable Operators don't step into the future, IPTV will force them to make the transition anyway. Broadcasters will only be strong-armed by the Cable Operators for so long before they take over their own delivery medium cutting out the middle man.
  • Reply 65 of 148
    v5vv5v Posts: 1,357member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SDW2001 View Post


    [...] ala carte channels will simply not work--at least not anytime soon. The reason is that the first channels to fail will be the small, but popular ones...such as Animal Planet. They get revenue, in part, based on monthly fees paid by the cable companies (who in turn charge consumers as part of a package). Brian Roberts, CEO of Comcast, has discussed this at length. He says the number one request of consumers is to have ala carte pricing. However, he also states that if it happens, a lot of the channels people love will fail.



     


    I don't know how you get from "some will fail" to "it won't work." Why do smaller channels need to be "protected?" If they fail they obviously weren't popular enough to warrant their existence. We don't force patrons of popular restaurants to take a certain number of meals from smaller, less popular restaurants. It would be ridiculous. If a restaurant isn't popular enough to survive, then it goes, even if the few people who DID like it are disappointed.


     


    If a channel can't attract enough subscribers to survive, that pretty much says it all. Thinning the herd might actually be a good thing.

  • Reply 66 of 148
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,650member


    I wonder if all of the illegal aliens that John McCain wishes to legalize will be eligible for free cable TV.


     


    As for this recent cable TV proposal, it has been tried before, and failed. I see no reason why this time should be any different. Is cable TV a human right now or something? If somebody doesn't like what is currently offered, then don't subscribe. Government intervention often does more harm than good. 

  • Reply 67 of 148
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,980member
    I'm still waiting on the savings from the govmint breakup of Ma Bell. Of course instead of paying $100 to Ma Bell, I get my choice of paying $120 to a multitude of companies. 

    But you now get much more. Calls are no longer metered where it was more expensive to call someone in the next county than across the country.
  • Reply 68 of 148
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,980member
    v5v wrote: »
    I don't know how you get from "some will fail" to "it won't work." Why do smaller channels need to be "protected?" If they fail they obviously weren't popular enough to warrant their existence. We don't force patrons of popular restaurants to take a certain number of meals from smaller, less popular restaurants. It would be ridiculous. If a restaurant isn't popular enough to survive, then it goes, even if the few people who DID like it are disappointed.

    If a channel can't attract enough subscribers to survive, that pretty much says it all. Thinning the herd might actually be a good thing.

    Again, that's how small city pro teams survive.
  • Reply 69 of 148
    boriscletoboriscleto Posts: 159member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rob Bonner View Post


    Yeah, this is what I want Congress working on since there are no higher priority issues to deal with.



     


    Doesn't John have another Benghazi hearing to go to...

  • Reply 70 of 148
    scprofessorscprofessor Posts: 218member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post





    But you now get much more. Calls are no longer metered where it was more expensive to call someone in the next county than across the country.


    Yeah you have a point. I grew up when you could only "rent" the rotary dial phones from Ma Bell and it was a party line. And that's kind of my point. Why can't I buy my boxtop and choose the carrier. Then we need to move on the the exclusive power company and water works. 

  • Reply 71 of 148
    wovelwovel Posts: 956member
    sdw2001 wrote: »
    I like this because:

    1. It says 'urging', not 'forcing'. The latter would be insane.
    2. It's exactly the same thing Microsoft was forced to do, and that worked out for the best.

    It's a shame we need a law for these idiots to get their act together and offer what would actually be best for consumers, but that's how the telecoms have always worked.

    In the face of this, though, they just might be a LOT more amicable to Apple's plan than being forced to come up with their own. Non-hobby Apple TV (box), here we come!

    Of course, this thing needs moved to PO right now…

    I'ts not the same thing at all. And, as someone who despises all major cable companies with a passion, I can tell you that ala carte channels will simply not work--at least not anytime soon. The reason is that the first channels to fail will be the small, but popular ones...such as Animal Planet. They get revenue, in part, based on monthly fees paid by the cable companies (who in turn charge consumers as part of a package). Brian Roberts, CEO of Comcast, has discussed this at length. He says the number one request of consumers is to have ala carte pricing. However, he also states that if it happens, a lot of the channels people love will fail. His argument makes perfect sense (he went into the numbers specifically during several interviews). I suppose it could work with major changes to the content delivery model, but that would require a absolute revolution. What are the odds of that? The cable companies are like the new RIAA--completely outmoded regional monopolies and duopolies fighting innovation every step of the way, all while crying about how consumers are cheating them. Unreal.

    Well that seems strange doesn't it. If they are popular, people will pay to watch the,. If they are channels people "love" then there is no reason for the rate to even change.
  • Reply 72 of 148
    dbtincdbtinc Posts: 134member
    At last something sensible from John McCain. People might argue this is beyond the scope of government intervention but the cable and satellite companies are monopolies. Should this bill pass just wait and you'll see that the bulk of the stations everyone watches will wind up costing as much as we are paying now.
  • Reply 73 of 148
    dbtincdbtinc Posts: 134member


    You actually believe that the "free market" is operating here? They're a monopoly and therefore subject to regulation. Deal with it.

  • Reply 74 of 148
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    wovel wrote: »
    Well that seems strange doesn't it. If they are popular, people will pay to watch the,. If they are channels people "love" then there is no reason for the rate to even change.

    There simply isn't any exact 1:1 ratio at work here. There are several examples of TV shows that were canned only to come back in some form after the execs realized they made a mistake. Them's the breaks but it still shows that the model isn't perfect.
  • Reply 75 of 148
    auxioauxio Posts: 1,987member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SCProfessor View Post


    Damn Canucks... should have launched a few nukes at you 30 years ago and claim the oil rights. :-)



     


    I hear Kim Jong-un is looking for a foreign policy advisor. :)

  • Reply 76 of 148
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,980member
    Yeah you have a point. I gr<span style="line-height:1.231;">ew up when you could only "rent" the rotary dial phones from Ma Bell and it was a party line. And that's kind of my point. Why can't I buy my boxtop and choose the carrier. Then we need to move on the the exclusive power company and water works. </span>

    That's why I think unbundling the network makes more sense than unbundling the channels.
  • Reply 77 of 148
    ddawson100ddawson100 Posts: 452member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by BrianCPA View Post


     


    Yup, patch a bad policy over a bad policy over another bad policy and what do you get? Our government and legal system.


     


    If what you say is true that "policy got us into this mess", then you can either: (a) fix it with policy or (2) get rid of the policies altogether. Do you want to put new shingles over a rotting roof?



     


     


    Let's be clear - I'm not advocating one approach over another here. But just acknowledging that the cable companies are now where they are due to a heap of policy - how content creators and bundlers and distributors pay one another, who owns the infrastructure, taxing, spectrum. That's just to name a few things. It's tangled. Good job security for the lawyers for some time to come, right?


     


    If you want to get rid of all the shingles you're the one who's going to get rained on. True you'll see a lot of sunshine when you remove that roof. I'm all for tearing the roof down but it's smart to have a new roof in place unless you want to get rained on. Just to extend your metaphor. I recognize that metaphors always have their limit.

  • Reply 78 of 148
    k2directork2director Posts: 194member
    Wonderful. The government once again inserts itself into private industry, to "fix" something that the free market is already fixing (ie, people are increasingly dropping their cable boxes altogether...when that desertion rate reaches a certain level, cable companies will change their ways, or they'll go out of business and be replaced by a better model).

    But who needs to let someone invent a superior product (like Netflix, Apple, Amazon, etc.), when you can have a huge bureaucratic institution like our Congress pass a bunch of byzantine laws that are often influenced by special interest groups (ie, campaign contributors to the politicians), that have all sorts of unintended consequences, and that, once the laws go on the books, are then notoriously difficult to reform.

    Sounds like a great formula for "protecting" the consumer.

    God, how I hate what this country is becoming...
  • Reply 79 of 148
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 19,154member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by crees! View Post


    Again, this is not a job for Congress and I'll just leave it at that.



    Um.... these are public airways. It is darn well the job of Congress, whether you like it or not.

  • Reply 80 of 148
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,578member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Bob Carpenter View Post



    Let the free market determine what people want to watch or if Cable is too expensive. I just assume shut the damn thing off.


     


    There is no free market in the cable industry. There never has been. The entire industry was founded on the concept of government granted monopolies. The "invisible hand" (a lovely fairy tale we like to tell our children) was amputated at the shoulder at birth.

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