It took, what, only three messages for the "good for DirecTV" crowd to chime in, as if DirecTV cares about anything other than its bottom line, or if this will prevent, ameliorate or even minutely effect the annual rate increase DirecTV will be "forced" to pass on to consumers in 2013, 2014, 2015 and beyond, in order to keep its profit margins on the ever-increasing upswing. (Since up is the only way ANY public corporation can ever have its profits go; logic and finite demand be damned.)
Obviously, DirecTV will keep trying to pay as little as they can (as any business would), while charging the absolute maximum possible the market will bear (again, naturally), all while doing the math on how much any particular channel loss/price increase will effect their bottom line (i.e. churn). Not how it will effect their customers mind you, but simply DirecTV's own bottom line.
I don't especially fault DirecTV for thinking this way, but I do have to roll my eyes at the continual back and forth and credulity regularly expressed here. Do the people who always chime in "thanking" DirecTV for "taking a stand" and "drawing a line" actually believe the rhetoric that DirecTV, or any corporation, is "fighting for" the consumer's best interest? Or "protecting" us from higher costs?
Beyond the $$$ you represent DirecTV doesn't give a rat's patoot about your "best interests." If it was legal for them to send a guy to your house and physically hang you by the heels and shake you solely to collect the loose change that falls out of your pockets don't think they, and just about other business, wouldn't do it in a heartbeat. The only interests DirecTV--and the channels for that matter--care about, are their own.
And, as someone else astutely and absolutely accurately pointed out, there will be a cost here: the eventual increase, no matter how large or small it is PLUS the escalating marketing war waged by both sides ... And there is zero doubt, no matter how this plays out, that every penny will, one way or another, ALL be passed on to the consumer, i.e. you and I. This slap fight Tribune and DirecTV are currently waging? Funded by us. I guarantee.
I don't even see how these channel disputes always get broken down into 'good guy' and 'bad guy' debates. Why does anyone buy into the P.R. spin? It's laughable on its face. As far as our own self-interest, and those of other non-stock-holding paying customer, they are always BOTH bad guys. Be it the now resolved year-long Versus fight, FOX channel stand-off, Viacom, Disney Jr., Tribune (which personally would mean we would lose our local CW and antenna isn't an option where we live), or a dozen other fights of this type that are now too frequent to recall... If the company I'm paying more and more every year to provide with me TV can't, or won't, provide the channels it promised, I'm the loser. Simply put: They have my money. I don't have my channel. It's getting beyond tiresome.
The arguments about whose 'fault' the negotiation breakdown is are childish and pointless and the public airing of grievances as a way to do business ever-so-annoying. I am beyond sick of the corporate press release regurgitation machine that couches every single carefully calculated financial decision--and that's what all of these "breakdown in negotiation" info spams are--and tries to spin it into a moral argument. One could easily argue that trying to do so is the company's obligation, but for goodness sake, let's be smarter than that and not buy into their pitch, OK? They can try and drag us into their playground game--the discourse of which rarely raises above the "nuh-uh" "yeah-huh" and "I know you are but what am I?" level--but we don't actually have to let them.
Years ago, when I used to regularly read about such stand-off tactics with Dish (and here I will insert a preemptive plea to please, skip the moral relevance arguments about which company is "worse," or does it more often) I was oh-so-happy that I wasn't beholden to that company. Now it seems DirecTV is embroiled in one public channel carriage smack down or another just about constantly. Some directly effect me, some don't. But there's always some loyal, paying customer getting the shaft.
I just want to pay for my service and turn on my TV and tune to whatever channel I was told I am paying for when they took my funds and have it work. Is that too much to ask? (And before someone argues: I assure you, it's not.) I don't want, or need, to know how the sausage is made. To have to write to this entity or call that one or post on this or that Facebook or Twitter page, or sign a petition to express my desire to continue receiving what I'm already signed up and paying for.
I pay good, hard-earned money for television, and in the case of DirecTV I pay them a lot, to AVOID this sort of hassle. Cut the B.S. and make the deal. Or, for that matter, don't. But just say come out and say it--that you are dropping such-and-such channel on such-and-such date because you couldn't reach a deal--and allow those that want to, to go elsewhere. Stop threatening customers with channel contract end dates and "tense negotiations" whilst using us as both battering rams (the "write/call/tweet" command) and pawns in your back-and-forth.
Ugh. So frustrated.
Edited by susanandmark, 27 March 2012 - 09:25 AM.