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post #13141 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by moob View Post

You see it as offering alternatives, I see it as an attempt to weaken Viacom's position. You don't see it as a douche move, I do. It's that simple.
But in any case, I wasn't necessarily talking about just this disagreement, but in general. With DirecTV, they're d-bags because of their questionable billing practices. I've been with them for over 5 years now and I've had mysterious charges pop up on my bill at least 6 or 7 times. Sure it's easy to clear up with a simple call, but the fact that those charges appear out of thin air in the first place is disturbing. Not to mention charging ex-customers for equipment even though it was returned, which they did to a family member. And I know it was returned because I made sure she returned it because I had heard the horror stories of DirecTV just taking the money from your card on file. Luckily the bank was on her side and quickly refunded her what D* took since D* refused to acknowledge that the equipment was returned so everything worked out. But d-baggy all the same.
And my bill has gone up about 18% in those 5 years for the same package, so using this dispute as an excuse to raise it higher? Frak that. They raise it anyway, as does everyone else. It's the nature of the beast.
This post reminds me of that old joke that Woody Allen quotes: "The food in this restaurant tastes so bad; and such small portions, too!"

DROP DIRECTV or do you like to beat your head against the wall, because it feels so good when you stop!?!?
post #13142 of 14740
Kudos to Directv. Viacom better hope we don't get use to other channels.
post #13143 of 14740
I'm so pissed at DirecTV. Viacom can kiss my *#% too.
post #13144 of 14740
Wow, it's only TV -- people why get so bent about it? The channels will be back at some point. it's summer turn the TV off and get out and have some fun.
post #13145 of 14740
First big step to 'cutting the cord' upheld by Federal Judge in New York:
http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2012/07/12/apple-is-a-winner-for-now-in-the-aereo-online-tv-ruling/
700
post #13146 of 14740
Well that's funny, we just went down to the basic package so it's hard to notice what's what, only thing i know is the Daily Show is definitely a goner right now thanks to Viacom.mad.gif
post #13147 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by bidger View Post

Well, since you ask, the online distribution was a sticking point with DISH and AMC and I'd have to imagine it factors into these negotiations as well. Multichannel providers pay millions and see the distribution companies put the content up for steaming for free or a very low monthly cost.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelLAX View Post

You're wrong! The distribution companies have no such practice, except with regard to systems that are only open to their subscribers.
You are incorrectly indicting the distribution companies, such as DirecTV, with the content provider's activities, such as Hulu, CBS.com, Viacom.com, etc.

Uh, Michael, Multichannel providers = DirecTV, Comcast, DISH Network, TWC, etc. and Distribution companies = Viacom, Disney/ESPN, HBO, etc.
post #13148 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by bidger View Post

Uh, Michael, Multichannel providers = DirecTV, Comcast, DISH Network, TWC, etc. and Distribution companies = Viacom, Disney/ESPN, HBO, etc.
While you're technically correct, you can't include HBO and ESPN in the same pile as Viacom, AMC, etc.

To get HBO or ESPN streaming (or the bulk of it, anyway), you have to have a cable or satellite provider.

In the case of ESPN, it's specifically there as a sweetener for multichannel providers with the idea that it adds more value to what they already offer. In the case of HBO, companies like Comcast, TWC and other MSOs that offer internet service, those companies are doing the actual streaming of HBO Go, not HBO. As a result, between that and the far wider (and more profitable reach HBO gets from monthly TV subscribers, don't expect a standalone streaming package any time soon.
post #13149 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by wco81 View Post

DirectTV must have some margins, the way they offer programming credits all the time, or offer lower prices to new subscribers.
Not to mention cutting the prices of Sunday Ticket, if you're to believe their ads.
No doubt Viacom and the media companies are going to demand more money. But the distribution companies are not so innocent.

this year there are less Sunday games and the real money in Sunday Ticket is at the COMMERCIAL establishments.
post #13150 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by DiCecco View Post

I would like Directv to just lower my bill and dump these worthless Viacom channels andSo dump every other channel that are showing mostly reality programing that I cannot stand.

May as well get rid of Directv altogether then.
post #13151 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by wco81 View Post

DirectTV must have some margins, the way they offer programming credits all the time, or offer lower prices to new subscribers.
Not to mention cutting the prices of Sunday Ticket, if you're to believe their ads.
No doubt Viacom and the media companies are going to demand more money. But the distribution companies are not so innocent.

I called the other day and got Red Zone Channel for free again. biggrin.gif I'm a happy camper, could care less about any of the Viacom channels.
post #13152 of 14740
For those of you who want to know how much your subscriptions have really increased over a given time use this:
http://www.westegg.com/inflation/
Otherwise, statements like "an 18% increase over 5 years" or "went up 50% since 1998" are meaningless.
post #13153 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by wco81 View Post

DirectTV must have some margins, the way they offer programming credits all the time, or offer lower prices to new subscribers.
Not to mention cutting the prices of Sunday Ticket, if you're to believe their ads.
No doubt Viacom and the media companies are going to demand more money. But the distribution companies are not so innocent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelLAX View Post

What are the distribution companies guilty of? Make a profit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bidger View Post

Well, since you ask, the online distribution was a sticking point with DISH and AMC and I'd have to imagine it factors into these negotiations as well. Multichannel providers pay millions and see the distribution companies put the content up for steaming for free or a very low monthly cost.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelLAX View Post

You're wrong! The distribution companies have no such practice, except with regard to systems that are only open to their subscribers.
You are incorrectly indicting the distribution companies, such as DirecTV, with the content provider's activities, such as Hulu, CBS.com, Viacom.com, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bidger View Post

Uh, Michael, Multichannel providers = DirecTV, Comcast, DISH Network, TWC, etc. and Distribution companies = Viacom, Disney/ESPN, HBO, etc.
Not in the context of the continued discussion of this point in this thread -- wco81 was using the term "distribution companies" as those including DirecTV. Who did you think I was referring to when I contrasted "distribution companies" with "content providers?"

So while your definitional point is correct in the context of how you restate the definitions, it adds no additional information to wco81's statement that "the distribution companies are not so innocent' and my responsive question to him that "what are the distribution companies guilty of?" since he was criticizing DirecTV in contrast to Viacom.

Thanks for that clarification of terminology; I will try to use more objective terms in my future posts.
Edited by MichaelLAX - 7/13/12 at 9:59am
post #13154 of 14740
Strange term of art. So the media conglomerates which pay directly for production of shows and approves or rejects them for broadcasting (or streaming online) are "distribution companies?"

Anyways, they all suck. If anyone wants to split hairs about one of them sucking less, be my guest. But lets not fool ourselves that some companies are working more for the consumer than others. They both exist to get as much profits out of the consumer.
post #13155 of 14740
A la carte pricing would cut bickering over pay TV fees

Spats between big TV programmers and cable and satellite TV distributors would cease instantly if pay TV customers could choose their own channel lineups.

By David Lazarus, Los Angeles, Times
July 12, 2012, 4:11 p.m.

Give TV viewers freedom to pick the channels they want to pay for

Once again, TV viewers encountered full-page ads in the newspaper this week declaring that a greedy cable or satellite company was denying people the right to watch their favorite shows.

The latest example of this increasingly familiar art form featured a picture of Comedy Central's Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. "What'll they take away next ... freedom?" the ad asked. "DirecTV is at it again. Rise up!"

Darn that DirecTV, dropping Comedy Central, Nickelodeon and other channels. Just as fellow satellite TV provider Dish Network has cheated customers out of watching "The Walking Dead" and "Breaking Bad" because it axed AMC Networks.

At least that's how the big programming companies want you to see it. The reality is that they're equally to blame for these disruptions by forcing fat packages of channels down the throats of distributors such as DirecTV, Dish and Time Warner Cable.

These endless spats among media behemoths would go away instantly if viewers had the ability to choose which channels they want to pay for. More on that in a moment.

You'd have to be especially eagle-eyed to spot who was behind this week's ads accusing DirecTV of hating TV freedom. It was in tiny print at the very bottom of the page:Viacom Inc.

Viacom owns popular channels Comedy Central, Nick and, as it says in the ad, MTV, BET, TV Land, VH1, Spike, CMT "and 18 more!"

It's that "18 more" that's the trick. Viacom doesn't identify them in its ad, but here are the other channels DirecTV subscribers are losing: Nick@Nite,Nick Jr., TeenNick, NickToons, VH1 Classic, Logo, Tr3s, Centric and Palladia, plus assorted feeds for East and West coast viewers.

Would your life be significantly different without them? Mine neither. Heck, I couldn't even tell you what's on Tr3s or Palladia. I didn't even know these channels existed.

Programmers have long maintained that such channel packages are the only way to maintain TV diversity. Sure, lots of people watch Disney-owned ESPN. But if Disney didn't force cable and satellite companies to also air the likes of the Military History Channel, people would be denied the full gamut of viewing choices.

It's a bogus argument. What programmers are basically saying is that demand for these niche channels is so meager, they need to be underwritten by people who watch more popular fare.

That's kind of like the publishing house Scholastic Inc.making readers of the "Harry Potter" series also buy copies of "The Accidental Cheerleader" to ensure diversity of literature for young people.

DirecTV says Viacom is seeking a 30% hike in annual fees for its channels, or an extra $1 billion over about five years. Viacom says it just wants fair market value for its shows.

"Viacom is asking DirecTV for a rate increase of a couple pennies per day, per subscriber," Mark Jafar, a company spokesman, said on a Viacom blog. "It's a good, fair deal."

But Derek Chang, DirecTV's executive vice president of content, told me that Viacom is seeking too much. "The ratings for many of their networks are down and a lot of their programming can be seen for free online," he said.

I say: Enough already.

These pie fights between overfed media conglomerates have become too commonplace. The perennial problem would disappear if cable and satellite subscribers could simply pick the channels they want to watch.

This is known in the TV trade as a la carte pricing, and it scares the bejeebers out of everyone in the business because it would entail a wholesale reinvention of how the industry operates.

Viacom and other programmers would no longer be able to rake in huge fees for bloated channel packages, just as DirecTV and other distributors would no longer be able to soak customers with sky-high fees for programming bundles that may include hundreds of channels no one ever watches.

However, DirecTV's Chang said the company would be open to a la carte if it could get programmers to play ball, which probably won't happen any time soon.

Here's the dirty little secret of the pay TV biz: According to Nielsen, the typical viewer watches only about 17 channels on a regular basis.

That's why a la carte is the only fair way of charging people for this product. People would put together their own channel lineups and pay a monthly fee for each selection. Costs might range from a few bucks for ESPN to as little as 25 cents for a classic-movie channel.

The marketplace would decide which channels sink or swim, not some phony-baloney commitment to TV affirmative action.

Canadian TV viewers are now getting a chance to try an a la carte system, thanks to an edict from that country's broadcast regulator. So why not us?

I put that question to the Federal Communications Commission. Specifically, I asked where Chairman Julius Genachowski, an appointee of President Obama, stands on the issue.

His predecessor, Kevin Martin, appointed by former PresidentGeorge W. Bush, had declared his support for a la carte, though he didn't do anything to follow up, such as calling on Congress to prohibit pay TV companies from charging customers for channels they don't want.

A spokesman for Genachowski had this to say: No comment.

Until we get a la carte pricing, the feuds between TV programmers and distributors will continue, and viewers will keep being told to accept the loss of favorite shows until the bickering is resolved. They'll also continue being charged for channels they never watch.

It's our money. We should be able to spend it as we please.

And our free-market friends in Washington should be fully behind such a sentiment.

David Lazarus' column runs Tuesdays and Fridays. He also can be seen daily on KTLA-TV Channel 5. Send your tips or feedback to david.lazarus@latimes.com

Copyright © 2012, Los Angeles Times
post #13156 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by wco81 View Post

Strange term of art. So the media conglomerates which pay directly for production of shows and approves or rejects them for broadcasting (or streaming online) are "distribution companies?"
Anyways, they all suck. If anyone wants to split hairs about one of them sucking less, be my guest. But lets not fool ourselves that some companies are working more for the consumer than others. They both exist to get as much profits out of the consumer.
How much less or more on the Suckie Scale would do you put the for-profit Football Clubs; such, as say, Barcelona?
post #13157 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by wco81 View Post

Strange term of art. So the media conglomerates which pay directly for production of shows and approves or rejects them for broadcasting (or streaming online) are "distribution companies?"
In quite a few cases, yes.

The reason is, a TV show may be produced by an outside company, but someone like Fox or CBS provides the big arm to get it picked up either by their own channels or through another.

For example: PTI is produced by Atlantic Video. They are the production company. It airs on ESPN to various cable and satellite companies. That makes ESPN the distributer. People watch it on their cable or satellite service. That service is the provider.

This is often the way it is for movies, as well:

Star Wars is produced by Lucasfilm. It's distributed for Fox. The showing is provided by the theaters.

In some cases, the production company and the distributer are part of the same corporation. CBS produces and distributes The Young and the Restless, which is provided to the audioence via OTA, cable or satellite.
post #13158 of 14740
The Young and the Restless is produced by SONY Pictures Television...
post #13159 of 14740
Meanwhile, my Viacom stock is up 2.23% today.
post #13160 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelLAX View Post

This post reminds me of that old joke that Woody Allen quotes: "The food in this restaurant tastes so bad; and such small portions, too!"
DROP DIRECTV or do you like to beat your head against the wall, because it feels so good when you stop!?!?
Because I have so many options? LOL. Contrary to what you said, there isn't much competition when it comes to providers. Plus I'm under contract until next year. That being said, I will be giving my cable company a second look this time around unless D* adds more basic HD before then.

In any case, I read the TCMHD discussion, so I'm done commenting on this with you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by fcb View Post

For those of you who want to know how much your subscriptions have really increased over a given time use this:
http://www.westegg.com/inflation/
Otherwise, statements like "an 18% increase over 5 years" or "went up 50% since 1998" are meaningless.
Um. No. It isn't meaningless because inflation over the last 5 years has been fairly inconsequential, so my previous statement stands.
post #13161 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by fcb View Post

For those of you who want to know how much your subscriptions have really increased over a given time use this:
http://www.westegg.com/inflation/
Otherwise, statements like "an 18% increase over 5 years" or "went up 50% since 1998" are meaningless.

Quote:
Originally Posted by moob View Post

...Um. No. It isn't meaningless because inflation over the last 5 years has been fairly inconsequential, so my previous statement stands.

fcb: Please don't try to distract him with any facts!
post #13162 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by moob View Post

...In any case, I read the TCMHD discussion, so I'm done commenting on this with you.
You Promise!?
Quote:
Originally Posted by moob View Post

...I will be giving my cable company a second look this time around unless D* adds more basic HD before then.
I can't wait to hear what you will have to say about Time-Warner come next year...
Edited by MichaelLAX - 7/13/12 at 3:19pm
post #13163 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by fcb View Post

Meanwhile, my Viacom stock is up 2.23% today.
Think how much you would be worth if every month you invested in Viacom, instead of paid DirecTV its subscriber fee!
post #13164 of 14740
Called and complained...DirecTv Reps. gave me $5 credit x 2 Months for the loss of Viacom Channels.

They also gave me free HBO for three months.....The drama continues - honestly I just want the channels back.
post #13165 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelLAX View Post

Think how much you would be worth if every month you invested in Viacom, instead of paid DirecTV its subscriber fee!
Not as much as if he had invested in DTV (for the last five years, the easiest I could pull up.) What's good for investors tends to be bad for consumers, and vice-versa. So it can make sense, if you're a long term investor, to use the products of the companies whose stock you own smile.gif
post #13166 of 14740
Now what? I can't get my Braves game in HD on channel 648-1, only in Sd on 648.
All other HD channels seem to be good?
WTF?
post #13167 of 14740
Simple, not compound, inflation 2007-present is 11.16%
Hardly negligible.
post #13168 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by fcb View Post

Simple, not compound, inflation 2007-present is 11.16%
Hardly negligible.
I guess it's a matter of perspective. Given a monetary value, it's not much compared to the overall increase. Don't get me wrong, if I had had an account since 1995 or whatever, I'd be right with you, but over the last 5 years? Eh...
post #13169 of 14740
Does anyone not like the idea of a la carte pricing, other than the providers?
post #13170 of 14740
Quote:
Originally Posted by MichaelLAX View Post

The Young and the Restless is produced by SONY Pictures Television...
You're right - I didn't realize that had changed.

It used to be Columbia, which is a CBS company.
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