Originally Posted by BartMan01
So there are no 'niche' channels/shows that you watch? All you watch are the mainstream reality/CSI anytown shows? The current bundling system allows many niche channels/shows to exist that would never pull in enough money on their own to be viable in an a-la-carte system. You would be surprised at how many channels/shows you (or your partner/family) take for granted that could never exist on TV in an a-la-carte system. You may also be surprised to find out that you have nothing much left to watch besides the shows you are mocking.
Plus as has been already mentioned, much of the cost of cable/satellite goes towards infrastructure and the rights to even carry the channels, so the total costs are somewhat fixed. There is no realistic way to switch to an a-la-carte system without a major shakeup/downsizing of TV content as you know it, and if you think there is you don't understand the economics behind the current system. Be careful what you wish for here, the end result may not look anything like you expect it to.
As a side note, I personally don't think it would be bad to let the whole TV industry as it currently exists implode. If it wasn't for certain sporting events and my family's desires I could do without TV all together.
Spoken like a thousand monopolistic guilds, a thousand times, for a thousand years. That if we do not accept THEIR price-fixing protection racket around TV / Cable / Satellite all we would have on TV would be this ?:
I say hard cheese to that. The TV industry is THE sexiest industry on planet earth and ever will be. Second only to music, if second at all. I live in LA and let me tell you this place is teeming with hundreds of thousands of highly motivated people who will do or say anything to get on television, or be involved in the making of television.
If every single employee of CBC, NBC, CNN, Fox, ABC, etc. etc. went to downtown Hollywood, doused themselves with gas and lit the match we would no longer have any Television to watch next year? Kim Kardashian would go back to being a stylist? Sofia Vergara would go back to Latin America making near minimum wage as a model? Heck no. They would use their considerable talents to create a more direct to customer relationship via some kind of streaming option similar to Louis C.K. , or the a la carte system I mentioned. And if that means Ryan Seacrest only makes $30 million a year rather than $50 mill, I won't lose any sleep.
Don't think so? Remember how all these naysayers told us for years the Netflix would not last, could not last, content is king, their CEO is a dolt, and on and on and on. Netflix is still around, still going strong, still using 33% of ALL our total internet bandwidth (!!!!!)
Recall how current TV shows are currently fed to us. And I do mean fed. Some writer with unfair backdoor access to network executives pitches a pilot. The pilot is made and shown to a gaggle of random Tom, Dick and Harry's and then whether it makes it to prime time depends on their reaction to that. Imagine if the Video game industry worked that way? Imagine if the movie industry worked that way? Imagine if the music industry worked that way? We'd all be currently listening to Debbie Gibson / Christian rock 8 tracks, playing Call of Duty: Brown People Massacre 56 and watching Jack and Jill 27 till the end of our days.
Simply put, Dish made a cost-benefit decision to implement a feature on their product that they calculated was more important to their customers than to their unwavering fealty to CBS. Who knows if they did it for cheap advertising or not? It's obviously something they have committed to.
You are right that I do watch niche programming. But not a single one of these shows I have been exposed to by simply flicking the channels. Its usually something I get from the internet or a friend recommended to me. And if I have to lose Robot Chicken (my one niche guilty pleasure) to save my butt $80 a month off my cable bill, I say "sayonora!".