Friday, April 12, 2013

Has Traditional TV Seen Better Days?

Just saw an article on USA Today ( http://m.usatoday.com/article/news/2061127 ) that raises the red flag on the future of traditional television. It seems as if the number of new cable TV subscribers is at an all time low suggesting that people are looking at other sources for video entertainment. Instead of paying high dollar for 300+ channels, more people are subscribing to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon TV. Even though the programming on these services is not real-time, people don't seem to care.

What does this information tell us? It tells is a couple of things. First, people are tired of paying the high fees for television service of which most of the channels or programming is of no interest. Think about it, how many channels are you paying for? Of those channels, how many are of interest to you? For example, I have over 300 channels available with my subscription. Of those channels I have about 3 television shows that I routinely watch outside of sports programming. Other than that, I could care less about the rest of what is on TV. What is interesting is that the three different shows I enjoy is spread across different tiers of service requiring me to purchase a larger package. Is this a random accident that I enjoy programming that makes me have more channels than I need? No, this is by design. Cable companies split popular networks across different pricing tiers so you will buy more.

I believe people are tired of paying high fees for lack of quality. Therefore, many are turning to Netflix and other services to watch programming on demand. This eliminates paying a lot for a little and allows flexibility in an individual's schedule. Sounds like a good idea? I am starting to think so.

Second, the quality of programming is horrible. Sitcoms are poorly written and stand as being family unfriendly. You will notice most sitcoms have a short life as compared to their ancestors. With a lack of quality coming at a high price it is no wonder that people are turning to on-demand programming from the Internet. It seems as if those who make programming decisions would remove the regulation that denies the consumer the ability to only order the networks they are interested in. I guess money talks. Looking at where the public is starting to look, things may change in the future.

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