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Time Warner Cable CEO Says It’s Time To Thin The Cable Channel Herd


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47 replies to this topic

#26 OFFLINE   Cyber36

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:48 AM

I believe the NHL is the first domino to set forth the demise of paid professional sports in America. The justification of making all that money playing a game is about to cease. The middle class has to decide soon if I want to eat that day or watch pay television. Don't worry, Obama will see to it......

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#27 OFFLINE   Hoosier205

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 08:55 AM

I believe the NHL is the first domino to set forth the demise of paid professional sports in America. The justification of making all that money playing a game is about to cease. The middle class has to decide soon if I want to eat that day or watch pay television. Don't worry, Obama will see to it......


I see absolutely no evidence of that.
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#28 OFFLINE   garn9173

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 09:07 AM

I believe the NHL is the first domino to set forth the demise of paid professional sports in America. The justification of making all that money playing a game is about to cease. The middle class has to decide soon if I want to eat that day or watch pay television. Don't worry, Obama will see to it......


Just like your favorite actor or actress, professional atheletes are entertainers with God given talent. Do you feel the same way when you go to a movie theater and pay $7 for a pop? It's the only way movie theaters can make money as every cent from a ticket sale goes to the studios.

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#29 OFFLINE   fleckrj

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 10:20 AM

The problem isn't Lifetime Real Women, Chiller, DIY or any of the other secondary channels - it's sports. When 50% of your programming costs address only 20% of your customer base you have a problem.

Dropping channels that cost 20 cents month is just noise when new sports channels costing $3-5 month keep popping up.


There are two parts to the argument - there are too many channels, and some channels charge too much. Whether the channel charges 20 cents or $5 per month, it still uses bandwidth. Even if all channels were only 20 cents, the number of channels cannot continue to grow.

#30 OFFLINE   fleckrj

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 10:30 AM

I believe the NHL is the first domino to set forth the demise of paid professional sports in America. The justification of making all that money playing a game is about to cease. The middle class has to decide soon if I want to eat that day or watch pay television. Don't worry, Obama will see to it......


The NHL dispute is about whether the players will continue to get 57% of the income generated by the games or wether the player's allotment will be cut to 50% of the income generated by the games. It will be resolved eventually, but regardless of the outcome, it is in no way leading to the demise of paid professional sports in America. It is just millionaires fighting billionaires for an extra 7% of the revenue that is already being taken in on these games..

#31 ONLINE   alnielsen

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Posted 06 December 2012 - 06:17 PM

Bingo. How many times a day can you watch reruns of Law & Order across MULTIPLE channels? :rolleyes:


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#32 OFFLINE   tardisdude

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 08:28 AM

Time Warner's new strategy might have the opposite effect they wish (garnering more TV Subs). The TV channels I like might not be the ones someone else likes. I don't care if a channel is a low rated channel in their eyes, its important to me.

TW's new promises of removing channels might just help them erode further their customer base. Party on TW, moving into the future or making your ahem service less marketable.

#33 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 04:34 PM

Isn't TWC sports in LA a niche channel?


No. Not everywhere. And I wouldn't be surprised if that channel gets better viewership in its primary market than some of the other truly niche channels out there that are viewable for the entire country.

#34 OFFLINE   inkahauts

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 04:41 PM

I personally would love to see a shift of the major play stations being in two or three packages, all sports being in a couple packages, and then the truly small niche market channels becoming a la cart. That would solve a lot of issues. A niche market channel to me is one that is hardly ever watched by anyone, or has only one specific type of programing. A reality only channel or a game show only channel would be those kinds of channels. Sports to me is in its completely separate own channel type, both RSNs and espn and league channels.

#35 OFFLINE   Diana C

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 07:22 PM

Wasn't this principle exactly the thinking (at least in public) behind Dish Network dropping the AMC suite of channels? We can see how that worked out. :rolleyes:

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#36 OFFLINE   georule

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Posted 07 December 2012 - 07:33 PM

Of course the below is almost 3 years old now, but the reality is a ton of these channels are dirt cheap per sub/month. But cumulatively it must add up, and eat bw and infrastructure cost. Plus there's always the fact that it always causes hard feelings in the sub base to some degree when you dump a channel you've been carrying.


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#37 OFFLINE   nmetro

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Posted 08 December 2012 - 01:36 PM

Bingo. How many times a day can you watch reruns of Law & Order across MULTIPLE channels? :rolleyes:


Hence, most of my viewing is towards movies. The idea that most of the so called niche channels, as well as the main ones, run 8 hour blocks of a show offers no variety. It is because of this is why services like Hulu exists. There are a number of programs, good programs, which can only be found via Internet sources.

What Time-Warner does not mention is that very few media companies own most, if not all of the channels. Take SyFy (SciFi). Before NBC Universal got hold of it, it ran mostly theatrical movies and SciFi and fantasy shows produced in the US and Britain, pre 1990s. Now it is a part time reality channel, with some SciFi, wrestling and a grade C horror/SciFi movie channel. To see how low this channel has come, tonight's first run movie "The 12 Disaster of Christmas". The description for the DirecTV Guide: "Massive earthquakes and other natural disasters threaten to destroy the world during the holidays". Even the previews SyFy was running for this movie were laughable. Though, three things stand out when big media wants to spend money: remake of "Dune", "Taken" (20 part mini series), and "Tin Man" were the great few highlights of the 13 or so years NBC/Universal controlled the channel.

The there is History and National geographic which both have now turned into reality channels. Animal Planet is heading that way. Of course there is AMC and IFC, no longer movie specific channels. Turner Classic movies reamins a diamond in the rough, as it has stuck to uncut, commercial free movies; amazing that it has not been wrecked like Fox Movie Channel/FXM.

Yes folks, and providers wonder why people are drifting to HlLu Plus, YouTube and NetFlix.

#38 OFFLINE   georule

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Posted 08 December 2012 - 09:44 PM

I personally would love to see a shift of the major play stations being in two or three packages, all sports being in a couple packages, and then the truly small niche market channels becoming a la cart. That would solve a lot of issues. A niche market channel to me is one that is hardly ever watched by anyone, or has only one specific type of programing. A reality only channel or a game show only channel would be those kinds of channels. Sports to me is in its completely separate own channel type, both RSNs and espn and league channels.


If not pure ala carte, those channels could at least be bundled into likely-looking bundles. Discovery, Science, H2, Smithsonian. DIY, HGTV, Cooking. FMC, TCM, Lifetime Movies.
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#39 OFFLINE   wmb

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Posted 08 December 2012 - 10:33 PM

(The Galaxy does NOT count...)


???? The MLS Cup winner for the past 2 years don't count?!? OK, Beckham is now gone. Haven't heard about Landon, yet.

Anyhow, there are few channels out there that I would say are must haves. Locals, of course. The ESPN package and Fox Soccer is a must have for me, even though I probably am less into sports than many of the guys I work with.

As for Netflicks, Hulu, etc, and the thread starter, this may be foretelling that Time Warner is looking in other directions. TW can get $50 to $100 for various broadband products over the same lines with the same equipment without having to provide the customer with any content. Seems like bandwidth can be a higher margin product that content - no programming costs.

The negotiating point for TW is to tell the networks, "Hey, you know that network you want us to pay $0.25 per month per subscriber for, why don't you just see if you can get 1 in 100 of our subscribers to pay you to stream it for that."

#40 OFFLINE   dhkinil

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 09:48 AM

Bingo. How many times a day can you watch reruns of Law & Order across MULTIPLE channels? :rolleyes:


Lots, and then you can throw in Law & Order UK, which uses the same episodes as the original L & O but set in London!!! The "DS Brooks" character is Lenny Briscoe with an English accent. :lol:

Edited by dhkinil, 10 December 2012 - 10:20 AM.


#41 OFFLINE   harsh

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 10:02 AM

Espn has begun to counter that by using all those channels for overflow games. And games are their bread and butter.

ESPN's bread and butter is advertising. This must not be ignored.

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#42 OFFLINE   Newshawk

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 10:12 AM

ESPN's bread and butter is advertising. This must not be ignored.

As my Intro to American Broadcasting professor once said, the sole reason American commercial broadcasting exists is to deliver the largest number of eyeballs possible to a point in time where an advertiser can present their message.

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#43 OFFLINE   hdtvfan0001

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 10:26 AM

The most interesting thing to me about his comments is that likely the same thing is being said at many places....he just said it publicly.
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#44 OFFLINE   Paul Secic

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 11:51 AM

Bingo. How many times a day can you watch reruns of Law & Order across MULTIPLE channels? :rolleyes:


5 to 6 times a day including locals.

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#45 OFFLINE   bidger

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 06:49 PM

The most interesting thing to me about his comments is that likely the same thing is being said at many places....he just said it publicly.


And if it were Mike White making the comments there would be a bunch of people on this board jumping on the bandwagon. Because it's a competitor some seem to want to dispute it.

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#46 OFFLINE   hdtvfan0001

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 08:10 PM

And if it were Mike White making the comments there would be a bunch of people on this board jumping on the bandwagon. Because it's a competitor some seem to want to dispute it.

Perhaps....then again....maybe not.

We are approaching a tipping point between having "x" number of HD channels (and I'm a big fan of HD channels if you couldn't tell :D) and pricing services out of the range of the mainstream customer base.

At some point, there comes a time when having any content delivery provider like cable, DirecTV, or other one is asked to pay a disproportionate amount of fee to transmit a channel - becomes out of line with the viewing numbers. At that point, it becomes a losing proposition. Last time I checked, all of these providers were for-profit companies.

I have no problem with what the cable exec stated - it happens to be a fact - this is on the verge of impacting all pay-TV service customers. Unless the greed of the original content providers ceases, we'll all start to see rising prices to the point that consumers can no longer afford what they may have today. The fact that ESPN alone charges somewhere in the $6.00 -7.50 range per month for their channels seems exorbitant.
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#47 OFFLINE   satcrazy

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 10:05 PM

5 to 6 times a day including locals.




You bet!

better this than multiple espn channels that I never watch.

I enjoy baseball myself, and I'd be ok with paying "per game" when I wanted to watch one, instead of subbing to sports channels that are of no interest to me.

#48 OFFLINE   fleckrj

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 07:19 AM

And if it were Mike White making the comments there would be a bunch of people on this board jumping on the bandwagon. Because it's a competitor some seem to want to dispute it.


Regardless of who said it first or who said it publicly, some people on this board will agree and others will disagree. I agree that the number of channels cannot continue to grow, especially since many of what were once niche channels are regressing to some sort of homogenous common denominator to get more viewers than they had as a niche channel.




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