Free broadcast TV in danger
The popularity of cable TV and Internet-based content has fractured free TV broadcasts as the industry continues to struggle to find advertisers and new viewers amidst a bad economy and new competition.
A combination of too many ways to view content and less ad dollars is putting pressure on content owners, as broadcasters expect even less ad revenue in 2010. Could an end to free, over the air broadcast TV be looming in the near future?
For example, Fox said it may black out Time Warner Cable subscribers from watching popular sitcoms and college football bowl games at the end of the week — mainly because Fox isn’t happy with the fees it is receiving from Time Warner and other companies.
The outlook may change in the near future, with Comcast now controlling 51% of NBC. Major television networks ABC, NBC, Fox and others are now moving material online, but they are still having trouble competing with Hulu and other more established sites. Furthermore, many individual sitcoms offer full episodes, show clips, trailers, and similar material online.
If advertisers are unable to bring in adequate funds for broadcasters, subscribers may have to pay more for cable and satellite TV bills. The problem is, many cable and satellite subscribers say they either won’t pay more, or are unable to pay more if subscription prices increase.
Comcast’s TV Everywhere service, available only to subscribers, is supposed to offer a one-stop shop entertainment portal for consumers. If broadcasters want to remain relevant moving forward, they may have to launch similar online businesses, learning from the successful decisions and mistakes made by Hulu and Comcast.
10 Comments on Free broadcast TV in danger
- Posts: 68
- Posted on: 31 Dec 09 14:04
- Posts: 724
- Posted on: 31 Dec 09 16:26
Cable started as a way to get tv channels to areas where OTA didn't work, the stations didn't charge fee's, and cable fees were nominal.
over the years, the networks want their cut, and theres so many non-network stations that its ads up. But now we pay to watch commericials.. pay alot to watch commericials. A business model I see struggling in the future.
- Posts: 954
- Posted on: 31 Dec 09 17:24
- Posts: 256
- Posted on: 01 Jan 10 05:18
- Posts: 3231
- Posted on: 04 Jan 10 07:03
- Posts: 981
- Posted on: 04 Jan 10 14:41
- Posts: 2
- Posted on: 17 Jan 10 10:48
By "free", I do not mean commercial-free either. I mean that no one will be able to receive broadcast programming without paying a fee to one agency or another: DISH, ComCast, Direct TV, or.....eventually....the government?
When we first began to hear about the transition to DTV, I asked myself, "WHY did we, the people, not have any say whatever in this decision? I do not want DTV. What happened to the 'will of the people'?" It did not take me long to realize that this was just the beginning of the end for free OTA tv.
Now we have a new DTV and often the reception on certain channels is lousy: interrrupted by "pixelation" or lost signals. I see all of this as a planned conspiracy to force us to change to cable or satellite. The sad thing is that many people - retirees, low income, unemployed, etc. - cannot afford this forced change.
Has anyone stopped to think what will become of this freedom of ours when the govt begins to exert control over cable and satellite transmissions? So much for free speech!
If the people do not object NOW to all this forced "change", there will be an unintended result: more crime in the streets. Free tv has been the only entertainment that many young people can enjoy. When that ends, the crime rate will certainly go up too. So....now is the time to let your representatives know that we ARE NOT HAPPY with these forced changes!
- Posts: 2
- Posted on: 17 Jan 10 10:50
- Posts: 1775
- Posted on: 17 Jan 10 17:13
I now have many TV's that are next to useless without a cable box or outboard ATSC tuner converter that I paid good money for.
I'm on cable here but by the time I pay for Internet and TV I'm paying over 100 a month and Comcast and many other cable systems are or soon will encrypt all but the basic channels so you HAVE to use some form of their box to get the channels you used to get with your TV for no extra cost, sure they provide a "free" box but it's a POS that can't even do HD.
Tempting to tell them to stuff their TV and get a antennae again but there are many shows on cable I really like...
- Posts: 1
- Posted on: 23 Feb 10 17:16
I cannot beleive that Over the air DTV could be coming to an end though.
One transmission tower can now broadcast a host of many channels with out have to string a wire to every home.
Say Fox Station broadcasting an All Sports, an All News, an ALL Movies, an ALL shopping, channel from a single tower.
Cost savings there.
No more expensive trucks and linemen to pay.
Cost savings there.
Less cost for the advertiser if their cost is spread out over the various channels of a single Network.
Yes they will have to buy more equipment and need to use more power but the over all cost would be less than cable or putting a Sattilite in orbit.
As for any job losses in the cable industry the could easily sell cell phones, :P, that would also pick up those Over the AIR Broadcast signals.
Just my opinion...
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