The End of Free TV?

All because Comcast ate up NBC. It all remains to be seen whether this bears out, but those networks are searching desperately for a new business model. And it ain’t happening–at least not yet–with the cable onslaught.

This would mean billions for the cable industry.

Broadcasters’ woes could spell trouble for free TV

By ANDREW VANACORE

NEW YORK (AP) — For more than 60 years, TV stations have broadcast news, sports and entertainment for free and made their money by showing commercials. That might not work much longer.

The business model is unraveling at ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox and the local stations that carry the networks’ programming. Cable TV and the Web have fractured the audience for free TV and siphoned its ad dollars. The recession has squeezed advertising further, forcing broadcasters to accelerate their push for new revenue to pay for programming.

That will play out in living rooms across the country. The changes could mean higher cable or satellite TV bills, as the networks and local stations squeeze more fees from pay-TV providers such as Comcast and DirecTV for the right to show broadcast TV channels in their lineups. The networks might even ditch free broadcast signals in the next few years. Instead, they could operate as cable channels – a move that could spell the end of free TV as Americans have known it since the 1940s.

More at the link.

I enjoy my free digital channels, such as they are. This sucks to no end.

I was thinking of TiVo. I think you should, too.

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~ by blksista on December 29, 2009.

2 Responses to “The End of Free TV?”

  1. It is interesting that our government now forces us to buy health insurance and next they will tell us we MUST pay for TV.

    If the credit card companies tried to charge me to use their product I would cut them off; the same goes for TV, if they do away with free over the air broadcasting I will stop watching. I gave up cable and satellite because the programming was not worth 2 cents and now this new digital signal comes and goes like satellite in a rainstorm, it’s a disaster. The suckers will pay $10 a day for TV but millions of us will shut it off and curse the greedy sons and daughters of a Beaach.

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  2. The killing of free TV was the whole point of the digital conversion. By causing half the people to not be able to receive the signal, the broadcasters’ ratings drop like a jet plane out of gas. They can no longer make money so the pay TV “services” win the 20 percent of households that are the holdouts. Pure greed refined an extra step. You pay up or get no signal. I bet that the satellite companies and Comcast paid big bucks in PAC bribes to buy this law.

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