The world has changed, this isn't 2000 anymore, it's not even 2010 anymore. You cannot run a business where your number one product...content...is growing in expense at double digit rates every year and most of that driven by sports. You can't do it if your paying customer can only withstand a mid, single digit price increase. It's a pathway to bankruptcy.
I have said exactly this. The whole market and playing field for RSNs is changing.
What I did say is that for all the stuff Directv has tried and said it has not placed a single sports channel on an ala carte tier and yet singles out the Pac 12 for this. It just renegoitiated contracts with CBS and is still carrying CBS sports in the same tiers. It carries fuel, speed, sportsman, pursuit, etc. in regular tiers, but it singles out the Pac 12 for the fight and lets these others all go untouched? I say put them all on ala carte or a sports pack as well. I also say have a kids pack, and a pack for all the crap from Viacom. Those that want to pay for six MTV/VH-1 channels with absolutely stupid content can do so.
Sports draws fans. I've also said that somehow, someway Dish has found a way to carry the Pac 12 on it's 120+ tier and, at the same time, charge a substantially lower price for it's packages.....how does it do this? That I am curious about. Maybe Directv's profit is so watered down because it pays up the nose for NFL Sunday Ticket at the expense of everything else?
When future RSNs come up for contract, you're going to see some major wars go on unless they back down (which they won't). Part of what DTV is doing right now is firing several shots across the bow. Now, you may not appreciate that but they clearly are. They are saying squarely to the business, the days of just coming to DTV and exepecting a layup are over. The costs are out of control, we're not buying anymore at those rates. Whether is Pac 12, the Lakers, Houston, or others. With the SEC gearing up for their own channel, rumors of the Big East and others, this is a show across the bow. At the end of the day, these guys need DTV's 20 million subscribers to pay their bills so DTV is willing to take some subscriber losses now to get these guys in line for the long term. Whether it works or not no one will know for a few years.
Never said otherwise, so I am not sure what you are talking about. Costs are out of control and RSNs are fighting for their lives. Their revenue stream is threatened with every single new channel that pops up (i.e. Pac 12, SEC if it comes about, etc.) This is all content that will come from RSNs.
RSNs are also being increasingly controlled by teams as well, taking away additional profit activities.
But Directv (or whomever) has a self interest in preserving the status quo (i.e. keep Pac 12 off it's systems, keep CSN-NW off its systems, etc.) because it's direct competitor is Pac 12 Network, etc.