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Why can't we buy our programming "ala carte" ?!?!

1934 Views 3 Replies 0 Participants Last post by  Guest
After listening to the last Charlie Chat:

He was talking about local programming and PBS stations being added to our locals and them not being offered "ala carte" anymore, that Dish had to raise the rates for the locals now. He also mentioned that Dish would have liked to have kept these stations ala carte, so the consumer shouldn't be forced to take these channels.

This made me wonder why couldn't we just buy all of our programming ala carte, and not pay for the channels we dont really watch? It would be cheaper for the consumer!
Why do we have to buy them in packages like the AT150 or Select Choice......in Direct TV's case.

John C
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Charlie has stated in the past that he would love to offer channels ala carte. The technology exists. The only problem is that the programmers won't allow him because they sell channels to him in "packages".

When I had a C-Band dish, I was able to purchase programs ala carte. Since I was able to pick and choose channels, my satellite bill was only about $17.00. I guess the same rules don't apply to DBS as they do with C-Band customers. I miss those days.
It all has to do with contracts with programming providers (major ones being, Viacom, Disney, News Corp, Rainbow and Time Warner). The providers dont want their programming to be sold a la carte. E* used to have a programming Package called DishPix, where you could pick any 10 channels (with a lot of exceptions) for $15 a month, but with at that time AT40 being $19.99/month it was not a very popular package.
When more channels weren't owned by big conglomerates it was easier. But the chance of finding a popular channel that is owned by itself is pretty rare. So now if you want popular channel "A" you have to add lesser popular "B" and unpopular "C", etc.

Now if in order to get "Sci-Fi channel" you also have to get "USA Network", I don't think toooo many people would be upset buy that, but even that throws out the A-La-Carte capability.

The companies even play the game with placing channels in the basic package vs medium or top package.

ESPN contracts insist on being in the AT-50 package on Dish (and equivlant on DTV), the Idea of a-la-carte would make their head explode and part of their back dealing may have also lead to the end of A-La-Carte.
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