Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 25th May 2012 07:39 UTC
Legal Dish' DVR has an 'auto-hop' feature, which automatically skips commercials on recorded TV. Fox is now suing Dish over this feature, because they claim it will destroy the business model of ad-driven television. "We were given no choice but to file suit against one of our largest distributors, Dish Network, because of their surprising move to market a product with the clear goal of violating copyrights and destroying the fundamental underpinnings of the broadcast television ecosystem," said Fox. This is the photographic film industry suing digital camera makers. It's so utterly absurd I can hardly believe it's for real.
Order by: Score:
UltraZelda64
Member since:
2006-12-05

I'll just say, Fox probably hates me anyway, because I have never once subscribed to broadcast TV and I have absolutely no plans to in the future. Their programming can rot for all I care.

Thanks Fox, you've just fueled my hatred towards broadcast television. ;)

The only communications services I need are cell phone and the Internet... Fox can go suck an ad-infested d*** on their already-overpriced-yet-ad-laden channels. I wonder if I'll get sued for going to take a shit during the commercial break of Fox News over at my cousin's house? After all, when he has it on, I'm not really paying much attention to it myself anyway.

Reply Score: 3

DrillSgt Member since:
2005-12-02

I'll just say, Fox probably hates me anyway, because I have never once subscribed to broadcast TV and I have absolutely no plans to in the future. Their programming can rot for all I care.

Thanks Fox, you've just fueled my hatred towards broadcast television. ;)

The only communications services I need are cell phone and the Internet... Fox can go suck an ad-infested d*** on their already-overpriced-yet-ad-laden channels. I wonder if I'll get sued for going to take a shit during the commercial break of Fox News over at my cousin's house? After all, when he has it on, I'm not really paying much attention to it myself anyway.


FOX is free to watch. They make money by being paid from the advertisers. One does not subscribe to broadcast TV. No one is paying to watch FOX. If you do not have cable/satellite service, you still pick up FOX on your TV. You subscribe to Cable or Satellite, you do not subscribe to broadcast TV.

Reply Score: 5

dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

You subscribe to Cable or Satellite, you do not subscribe to broadcast TV.


Perhaps not in USA, but in many other countries that is wrong. In Denmark it's been common to encode terrestrial TV for several decades, even back when TV-signals were analogue. Today all signals are digital and one cannot see much terrestrial TV without subscribing to one of the packages from Boxer-TV. One can see a few selected state-channels, but one can also see satellite tv without subscribing to any company.

Reply Score: 2

DrillSgt Member since:
2005-12-02

Perhaps not in USA, but in many other countries that is wrong. In Denmark it's been common to encode terrestrial TV for several decades, even back when TV-signals were analogue. Today all signals are digital and one cannot see much terrestrial TV without subscribing to one of the packages from Boxer-TV. One can see a few selected state-channels, but one can also see satellite tv without subscribing to any company.


I stand corrected then. I thought FOX was strictly a US network, so I was using that train of thought.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by franko
by franko on Fri 25th May 2012 08:27 UTC
franko
Member since:
2012-05-25

I reckon Fox would hate MythTV as it also lets you skip commercials. Luckily it is open source so it would be a bit hard to sue.

Reply Score: 4

ads on a paid channel?
by Lion on Fri 25th May 2012 08:37 UTC
Lion
Member since:
2007-03-22

As a non-american I didn't realise that Fox is a paid service that also has advertising. Here in NZ we either pay for SkyTV and don't get ads, or have free TV with ads.
How do people consider it acceptable to pay to watch advertising?

Reply Score: 7

RE: ads on a paid channel?
by Laurence on Fri 25th May 2012 08:47 UTC in reply to "ads on a paid channel?"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

As a non-american I didn't realise that Fox is a paid service that also has advertising. Here in NZ we either pay for SkyTV and don't get ads, or have free TV with ads.
How do people consider it acceptable to pay to watch advertising?

Sadly the American system is the norm. In the UK, cable and satellite TV is a non-free service with ads.

I guess they justify this because of the cost of production for many of their flagship shows. But I just with the vast majority of content wasn't budget reality shows (aka serialised soaps about the spawn of Satan).

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: ads on a paid channel?
by gan17 on Fri 25th May 2012 12:06 UTC in reply to "RE: ads on a paid channel?"
gan17 Member since:
2008-06-03

(aka serialised soaps about the spawn of Satan).

They have soaps about the Murdoch family now?
Yikes!!

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: ads on a paid channel?
by daedalus on Fri 25th May 2012 12:37 UTC in reply to "RE: ads on a paid channel?"
daedalus Member since:
2011-01-14

At least in the UK, the BBC don't have advertising, whereas the Irish market is apparently too small to support the national broadcaster exclusively with licence fees, so we pay our TV licence *and* watch ads on the national channels. However, even though Sky etc. in the UK have ads, you usually only get one ad break in the middle of a half hour show. After watching some TV in the USA, I just couldn't stick it due to the number of ads. It's no wonder someone would want to come up with a workaround for it, and that there'd be a big market for it! It put me off TV for quite a while I have to say.

Anyway, even with an official Sky or UPC DVR box, everyone just fast-forwards over the ads, so it's hardly going to make a massive difference that way.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: ads on a paid channel?
by Andre on Sun 27th May 2012 10:46 UTC in reply to "RE: ads on a paid channel?"
Andre Member since:
2005-07-06

same for the netherlands. expensive and ads.

Reply Score: 1

RE: ads on a paid channel?
by WorknMan on Fri 25th May 2012 16:42 UTC in reply to "ads on a paid channel?"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

How do people consider it acceptable to pay to watch advertising?


Some of us don't, and the same with services like Hulu Plus and Xbox Live (where you pay $60 for a 'gold' membership and are still shown ads on the dashboard). I'm happy to pay for a lot of things to remove ads. I will NOT pay for anything that has ads, period. Even some games have product placements all over them, on top of the $60 price tag.

And btw... if skipping the ads is committing copyright, then I suppose millions of people around the world with remote controls ought to be getting sued ;)

Reply Score: 5

Comment by Laurence
by Laurence on Fri 25th May 2012 08:41 UTC
Laurence
Member since:
2007-03-26

What about people who record shows just to fast forward through the ads like I do with Sky+? I set a program to record and then start watching about 15mins into an hour long show, just to skip the adverts and so I finish watching the show around the same time it finishes airing.

Or, if I really must watch TV in real time, then I channel hop during the ads.

I guess that means that everyone is liable.

I really hope Fox wastes a lot of money on this case and loses because nothing good comes out of that shitty network aside Furturama - and that's been pretty crap since it's returned from cancellation anyway.

Reply Score: 3

copyright
by Gooberslot on Fri 25th May 2012 08:42 UTC
Gooberslot
Member since:
2006-08-02

How does skipping ads violate copyright?

Reply Score: 11

RE: copyright
by Boldie on Fri 25th May 2012 12:56 UTC in reply to "copyright"
Boldie Member since:
2007-03-26

Maybe the combination of content and ads is considered a masterpiece. Altering the masterpiece is violating copyright? (crazy people, crazy thoughts?)

Reply Score: 5

RE: copyright
by umccullough on Fri 25th May 2012 20:03 UTC in reply to "copyright"
umccullough Member since:
2006-01-26

How does skipping ads violate copyright?


I'm guessing they're going to use some argument about how the "copyrighted work" is being modified by Dish's hardware and thus the consumer. They'll probably argue that the commercials are part of the TV show, and that Dish has no right to remove them.

Ultimately, however, it is the consumer that is making the decision to skip the commercials, so I have a feeling this will be baseless. They might try to use some "DMCA circumvention device" argument, but I kinda doubt that would stick.

Fox (and other content companies who complain about such things) really just hates their customers...

Just another dinosaur media company who has been outsmarted by technology along with their own customers, and would rather litigate than innovate.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by NuxRo
by NuxRo on Fri 25th May 2012 09:09 UTC
NuxRo
Member since:
2010-09-25

Hardly surprising, remember these are the people that cancelled "Firefly"! :-)

Reply Score: 9

Comment by marcp
by marcp on Fri 25th May 2012 09:11 UTC
marcp
Member since:
2007-11-23

Maybe it's time to change your anachronistic god damn business model, Fox? People are using these "crap skippers" with a serious reason, not for fun. Maybe they just don't accept commercials? It's like MPAA/RIA/whatever bitching about low sells of CDs.
Just use your brains for once for something else than feeding your unimaginable greed and figure out the way to be a good man for yourself AND for the actual consumers.

Now, to be honest, I don't believe they are capable of doing it. But it's always good to point out the real problem.

Edited 2012-05-25 09:12 UTC

Reply Score: 5

Older than you think
by Neolander on Fri 25th May 2012 09:26 UTC
Neolander
Member since:
2010-03-08

I can only think of this comic right now.
http://www.nerfnow.com/comic/532

Reply Score: 5

RE: Older than you think
by zima on Fri 25th May 2012 17:51 UTC in reply to "Older than you think"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Reminds me about few of those http://kyon.pl/tag,1,5688,piracy.html (don't miss first two gifs)

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Older than you think
by Neolander on Fri 25th May 2012 18:02 UTC in reply to "RE: Older than you think"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

I didn't understand the part in Polish, but the English ones were pretty awesome. And very true, too...

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Older than you think
by zima on Fri 1st Jun 2012 22:30 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Older than you think"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Check out those two again, I made quick translations.

Reply Score: 2

The industry can, in fact, learn.
by tidux on Fri 25th May 2012 11:53 UTC
tidux
Member since:
2011-08-13

I was listening to NPR this morning, and CBS's profits are up something ridiculous like 80% from last year, and a big piece of that is non-advertising revenue sources like syndication deals of their old programming to Netflix, Hulu, and cable/satellite on demand video services. I don't begrudge them any of it - if they're making money by selling stuff they produced to consumers who want it, or to distributors who also sell at a fair price (netflix, hulu, etc.), that's capitalism at its finest.

tl;dr A Rupert Murdoch company is being greedy and anticompetitive, film at 11.

Reply Score: 4

Re:
by kurkosdr on Fri 25th May 2012 11:57 UTC
kurkosdr
Member since:
2011-04-11

"How does skipping ads violate copyright?"

Isn't anything except viewing the media just like Fox wants, on devices Fox wants, copyright infringement according to Fox?

Unfortunately they do the campaign donations needed to turn this nonsense into law.

These are the people who considered rewinding a rented videotape "copyright infringement" (srsly). The real reason the studios sued betamax is because it competed with their Cartrivision format, which had special tapes for rental movies that couldn't be rewound. Imagine if the DMCA existed back then.

Browser: Mozilla/5.0 (Linux; U; Android 2.2.2; el-gr; LG-P990 Build/FRG83G) AppleWebKit/533.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0 Mobile Safari/533.1 MMS/LG-Android-MMS-V1.0/1.2

Edited 2012-05-25 12:00 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Re:
by Thom_Holwerda on Fri 25th May 2012 12:02 UTC in reply to "Re:"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

I think it goes something like this:

- when you buy a DVD, you pay money for it. By downloading it, you are not paying money, and thus, deprive us of potential income > stealing.

- when you watch TV, you watch the commercials, and thus, pay for it. If you do not watch the commercials, you are not paying, and this, deprive us of potential income > stealing.

It's fcuking retarded, but hey, not my reasoning.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Re:
by phoudoin on Fri 25th May 2012 12:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Re:"
phoudoin Member since:
2006-06-09

- when you watch TV, you watch the commercials,


True only if there is *only* commercials on a TV channel. I know, many of us will say it's the case, but let's be honest, it's not actually the case. Saying it's *mostly* commercials would be true, though ;-)

So, considering that, you can perfectly watch TV without watching commercial, since day one : nothing, absolutely nothing forbid the viewer to NOT watch the display while commercials are broadcasted, by going to the fridge or another commodity place in his home, or simply snozzing on his couch during that time.

By following their... their *logic*, any TV devices are violated since start broadcaster's "copyright" and their business model would have die since long already.

As it's not the case, I guess something is broken somewhere in their argument.

I wonder where. Really.

PS: since when a business model should never die, and since when it should be protected of any threat by Justice!? What happened to free market, open concurrency and so on?

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Re:
by phoudoin on Fri 25th May 2012 12:44 UTC in reply to "RE: Re:"
phoudoin Member since:
2006-06-09

Ooops, duplicate post.

Edited 2012-05-25 12:44 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Re:
by redshift on Fri 25th May 2012 19:23 UTC in reply to "RE: Re:"
redshift Member since:
2006-05-06

Even when I watch TV the old fashioned way without ad skipping I rarely pay attention to them. That is always a good moment to hit the restroom or to get a drink. I guess fox would like to have us all watching TV Clockwork Orange style. Anything less is piracy to them.

What ever... they canceled Firefly and left me hanging on the Sarah Connor Chronicles. Nothing has caught my interest on cable in some time, so I am planning on going net only anyway. HD is less compressed over the air for local channels too. I have been able to catch my Doctor Who on iTunes, and I can wait and watch other stuff on Netflix. I would just as soon wait to find out that the show gets a proper ending before I invest myself in watching it.

Reply Score: 2

Brace Yourselves!
by AnythingButVista on Fri 25th May 2012 13:23 UTC
AnythingButVista
Member since:
2008-08-27

Tablets will soon be outlawed. It's way too easy to do some web browsing on your tablet while watching TV during the commercial breaks.

Maybe Fox and the other TV networks will band together and force the tablet makers to lock the screen or display their commercials on the tablet too so we don't get distracted by stuff that actually matter to us.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Brace Yourselves!
by StephenBeDoper on Fri 25th May 2012 22:02 UTC in reply to "Brace Yourselves!"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Tablets will soon be outlawed. It's way too easy to do some web browsing on your tablet while watching TV during the commercial breaks.

Maybe Fox and the other TV networks will band together and force the tablet makers to lock the screen or display their commercials on the tablet too so we don't get distracted by stuff that actually matter to us.


You jest, but these days I wouldn't rule out the possibility of them at least making an attempt. Wasn't there an attempt by some radio association to mandate FM receivers in many types of consumer electronics a few years back?

Reply Score: 2

Tivo?
by Drunkula on Fri 25th May 2012 13:36 UTC
Drunkula
Member since:
2009-09-03

Didn't Tivo have a feature that automatically skipped commercials? Of course the broadcasters cried foul and raised a stink about it. I think Tivo had to get rid of that.

Reply Score: 1

We got snowed!
by fretinator on Fri 25th May 2012 13:58 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

For years there have been two main models of broadcasting: advertising-supported and listener-supported. In the Ad model, you paid for you show by watching advertising. In the listener-supported model, you paid literally with cash, and to a lesser extent enduring periodic fundraisers.

Now the media industry has the best of both. We pay ehorbitant prices for media (cable\satellite), while at the same time having to watch advertising. This is ridiculous! It is exactly these kinds of strong-armed tactics that drive customers away. The good news - the big-content folks are on their way out. It will be fun to watch them writhe!!

Reply Score: 5

Not surprised at all
by the_trapper on Fri 25th May 2012 14:44 UTC
the_trapper
Member since:
2005-07-07

I'm also not surprised by this...after all these are the same ASSHOLES who make it impossible to fast forward or rewind any of their shows when watched "on-demand." It's funny because my definition of on-demand meant that I can control the viewing a little more than hitting the play and pause buttons.

These are just the violent death throes of a dying industry. It's just like how in America a large chunk of our taxes go to prop up our defunct railroads or how big oil is buying up and burying every alternative energy startup they can get their hands on.

Reply Score: 4

Check your source..
by kenji on Fri 25th May 2012 15:12 UTC
kenji
Member since:
2009-04-08

Actually Fox, NBC and CBS are banding together to sue Dish Network. This is from the AP.

I wouldn't be surprised at all if ABC jumped in too. For those outside of the US, that would be all 4 major US broadcast networks.


EDIT: the LA Times is a crappy news source.

Edited 2012-05-25 15:15 UTC

Reply Score: 3

Comment by ilovebeer
by ilovebeer on Fri 25th May 2012 15:14 UTC
ilovebeer
Member since:
2011-08-08

I don't watch live tv. Instead I intentionally record everything so I can skip the ads. A persons time is their hottest commodity so if I'm going to watch an hour long show where 40 minutes are the actual show, and 20 minutes is advertising, you're going to have to pay me to waste that 20 minutes.

If good or even great shows have to die to force the model to change, so be it. The future is not in ad revenue. The sooner they figure that out, the better for everyone.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by ilovebeer
by RawMustard on Sat 26th May 2012 06:14 UTC in reply to "Comment by ilovebeer"
RawMustard Member since:
2005-10-10

I don't watch live tv. Instead I intentionally record everything so I can skip the ads. A persons time is their hottest commodity so if I'm going to watch an hour long show where 40 minutes are the actual show, and 20 minutes is advertising, you're going to have to pay me to waste that 20 minutes.


This is my feeling also!

A persons time is their hottest commodity


Despite opinions to the contrary, this is the only thing of real value to humans. Every thing else is just fiat of human time!

Reply Score: 4

Damn you Dish
by seratne on Fri 25th May 2012 15:22 UTC
seratne
Member since:
2005-07-06

The hopper is a great feature that a lot of HTPC solutions have been using for years.

The only difference is you had to put aside time, and install and configure the software. For the average user, it's a huge mountain and they don't do it.

Dish is now bringing the feature to the everyman. And the networks are upset as all get up. Understandably, they do need to make money. Despite whatever bone headed programming choices they make.

The problem Dish has created is that when the networks win (and they will win) they might be able to go after ShowAnalyzer. And without putting up a crap ton of money for lawyers, they'll probably just cave in and cease and desist. Comskip being open source, yada yada will probably still exist in some fashion. But, hell, they might Nudge microsoft and "ask" them nicely to disable the plugins that make this work..

F U Dish.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Damn you Dish
by ilovebeer on Fri 25th May 2012 15:58 UTC in reply to "Damn you Dish"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

The problem Dish has created is that when the networks win (and they will win) they might be able to go after ShowAnalyzer.

Don't be so quick to assume the networks will win. The lawsuit claims the ad skipping is done by actually modifying the content and thus violating the copyright. Unless Dish is incredibly stupid in how they implemented the feature, there's no reason an ad skipper would have to modify the content at all. It's also claiming that watching a recorded show is a "re-broadcasting", which is very clearly not true as nothing is being transmitted, and thus can not be received.

The networks aren't just going to sit back and let this happen but the lawsuit they've brought forward is flimsy at best. It may very well be they lose and come out of it with a ton of bad PR to boot. We'll have to see how it plays out.

Reply Score: 3

DREVILl30564
Member since:
2008-04-18

These are the same guys who are about to drop AMC, IFC, We TV, and any other channels from this same company because they charge too much according to the dish network company. Yet when I call to complain about this the tech support drone from India can't grasp the concept that I'm not happy about the impending loss of these channels, which is the only reason I am suscribed at the top 200 package level so I can watch The Walking Dead when it's on... (When you tell me I'm not going to lose a channel, and can't explain to me why the channels that I'm going to lose no longer show up on any of the programming levels on the website, I'm not going to believe you). You can look for Dish to drop local programming as an option very soon. As soon as I can cancel my service with them without having to pay the ETF I'm switching over to U-verse.

Reply Score: 1

US vs the World
by deathshadow on Fri 25th May 2012 22:36 UTC
deathshadow
Member since:
2005-07-12

Something our friends from overseas may not grasp -- and we've seen it both in Thom's little rant and from a few posters here... is that broadcast TV is FREE in the US to consumers -- it is paid for ENTIRELY by advertising. Blocking advertising removes all broadcast channels income.

Just as broadcast radio is free here in the US -- paid by advertising, and why a newspaper still costs about half what it costs them to print them -- paid for by advertising. It's why our fish wrappers/community papers/"shoppers" are FREE, as they are cover to cover more advertising than content.

This is not even CLOSE to what Thom kneejerked into thinking it was from a US standpoint... and I'd not be surprised to see the other broadcast networks -- ABC, CBS, NBC and WB hop on this bandwagon to protect their affiliate broadcast stations from losses in revenue.

That's why broadcast TV has advertising... and why I never really understood "cable only" stations need for it given the noodle doodle prices ($100 and up these days) of most cable and satellite packages... except of course that even channels like USA or Spike make far, far more money from advertising than they do in 'carrying fees' from cable and satellite providers.

NOT that I'm one to talk anymore since I canceled cable and now just watch Netflix and Hulu, which for me are far more economic and reasonable choices.

Or that I now live in a valley where ever since the stupid malfing switch-over to digital broadcast only means there is ZERO broadcast TV reception any more. Thanks Congress for shoving a technology change nobody could afford down our throats, and destroying broadcast TV availability in the process... not that it was a big loss here since the only channel you could get before the switch-over without a 100 foot tower in the back yard was PBS.

OH, BTW, Dish is a total ripoff given their 2 year contract locking, thousand dollar fees for trying to discontinue service, auto-billing when you discontinue service without you EVER authorizing auto-billing to checking accounts, fraction of the channels of what we get in my area on cable at about $20/mo less in cost, and general sleazeball practices that make them one of the most disreputable companies in the nation. I've watched three of my neighbors deal with that ***, and it makes me really glad I was never DUMB ENOUGH to try and get satellite service.

These guys make Amway look legitimate... and the really sad part is, DirectTV (the only other major satellite provider here) makes Dish look GOOD.

Edited 2012-05-25 22:53 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: US vs the World
by deathshadow on Fri 25th May 2012 23:00 UTC in reply to "US vs the World"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

Oh, BTW, there's a REASON commercial free cable channels cost even more noodle-doodle money each! Top 200 is $15/mo more, while HBO, Showtime and Cinemax cost that EACH? Ring any bells?

Reply Score: 2

RE: US vs the World
by ilovebeer on Sat 26th May 2012 00:39 UTC in reply to "US vs the World"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

Something our friends from overseas may not grasp -- and we've seen it both in Thom's little rant and from a few posters here... is that broadcast TV is FREE in the US to consumers -- it is paid for ENTIRELY by advertising. Blocking advertising removes all broadcast channels income.

I didn't bother reading any further than this because I didn't see the point. You are absolutely wrong when you say networks only revenue is generated by advertising. Perhaps you're confusing local affiliates with networks -- they are two completely different things. As is true for all the major networks, the lions share of money they make is from syndication.

Reply Score: 3

RE: US vs the World
by redshift on Sat 26th May 2012 01:29 UTC in reply to "US vs the World"
redshift Member since:
2006-05-06

Something our friends from overseas may not grasp -- and we've seen it both in Thom's little rant and from a few posters here... is that broadcast TV is FREE in the US to consumers -- it is paid for ENTIRELY by advertising. Blocking advertising removes all broadcast channels income.


One of the things I hate about this model is that they have been encreasint the amount of advertising per program steadily over the years. You will find that old shows actually need to be edited and or time compressed to fit in the smaller space allotted for shows so that they can spend more time advertising. Even the number of episodes in a season seems to have dropped.

THey go so far as to alter the content of shows in reruns now....
http://articles.businessinsider.com/2011-07-09/tech/29984553_1_new-...

I am so sick of advertisements layered into every aspect of our lives. Most of them for crap I would never buy anyway.

Reply Score: 2

RE: US vs the World
by Alfman on Sat 26th May 2012 02:34 UTC in reply to "US vs the World"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

deathshadow,

"Something our friends from overseas may not grasp -- and we've seen it both in Thom's little rant and from a few posters here... is that broadcast TV is FREE in the US to consumers -- it is paid for ENTIRELY by advertising. Blocking advertising removes all broadcast channels income."

I think this needs more elaboration, since it's not accurate for US cable subscribers. It's only truly free for broadcast viewers. However the majority of US viewers are actually cable. They either don't want to fiddle with an antenna every time they change the channel, or they are in a rural/suburban region that has insufficient coverage.

http://tvbythenumbers.zap2it.com/2008/12/03/updated-where-did-the-p...


Cable tv viewers DO pay for broadcast TV programming, even though they are generally included with the basic bundle rather than value added options. They may pay less than premium channels however the fees are multiplied over every single subscriber, even those who don't watch those networks. Another thing to consider is that cable internet users have to pay for basic cable channels even if they're using a dish network for TV. All the businesses here who have cable internet are paying for basic tv even when they don't have a TV. Some of those proceeds go to Fox and other ad supported networks.

http://kimberly-shumway.suite101.com/tv-business-model-explained-a1...

"These cable/satellite providers pay cable networks a monthly fee for each subscriber. According to Broadcasting & Cable, providers pay an average of $.26 for each channel that they offer to customers ('Business model unraveling for TV networks,' 29 December 2009). Some channels cost more, like ESPN which goes for almost $4; others cost less, like MTV2, which goes for a few cents."

"Fox is an illustrative example; for the quarter ended September 2009, its broadcast network reported a 54% drop in operating income while its cable networks reported a 41% increase. NBC's Jeff Zucker has told investors 'the cable model is just superior to the broadcast model'"


Our local cable monopoly apparently pays Fox $70M/year, and fox had threatened to pull it's network if it didn't get $150M. Anyone who watched TV on cablevision during these past few years will probably remember the scrolling banners that networks injected onto their cablevision feeds, telling cable subscribers to call up the cable company and demand they not discontinue the network's programming. Fox is still there, but we lost other basic channels over failed negotiations. All are ad supported channels.


http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/14/business/media/14fox.html

I think this link is a good read for anyone who wants to understand the fighting over fees that goes on behind the scenes (and sometimes spills over as a scrolling banner on top of the programs people are trying to watch).

Hopefully the link is not behind a paywall for anyone.

Edited 2012-05-26 02:47 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: US vs the World
by deathshadow on Sat 26th May 2012 03:44 UTC in reply to "RE: US vs the World"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

Cable tv viewers DO pay for broadcast TV programming, even though they are generally included with the basic bundle rather than value added options.
an amount that really only covers transmission charges -- case in point:

According to Broadcasting & Cable, providers pay an average of $.26 for each channel that they offer to customers


Let's take... the Commiewealth of Taxachusetts, southern NH and Rhode Island as an example... and use WFXT 25, the local fox affiliate -- which totals by US Census and FCC numbers somewhere around 3.6 million homes; let's highball and say all those homes are paying that 26 cents to have WFXT carried via satellite or cable.

3.6 million * 0.26 = 936 million dollars a month sounds impressive...

But compare to say... the dozen or so prime-time advertising slots averaging $100k/pop PER SHOWING? They make that billion or so in a DAY of advertising. I mean sure, you can run a 30 minute informercial for $5 a pop at 3AM -- daytime and primetime broadcasts? $50k is the low end and how many of those can they run EVERY DAY? Admittedly nailing down rates is tough since cost is DIRECTLY tied to Neilsen ratings and/or expected viewership (see the 2.4 million dollars every 30 seconds superbowl price), you add up the advertising costs over a month, and it makes the fees from cable and satellite providers look like chump change; certainly not enough to operate on without advertisements.

... and it's NOT a difference between networks and their affiliates; two thirds of every minute of advertising is devoted to national ads, the remaining third for local. Even without the broadcast model, the local affiliate is still an essential part of the infrastructure when it comes to news, regional broadcasts, and tailoring of content delivery to the community.

... and that's just talking ONE channel; if we're talking every Fox broadcasting channel -- FX, Faux News, Fox Sports, etc, etc... that's a significant multiplier that makes those fees seem even more pathetic.

Also, I would question that 26 cents given the top 200 over basic plans is typically 15 to 30 bucks more -- I very much doubt they're paying 52 dollars per household for that. A little common sense and reverse engineering can really lay waste to that type of information.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: US vs the World
by ilovebeer on Sat 26th May 2012 04:02 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: US vs the World"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

... and it's NOT a difference between networks and their affiliates; two thirds of every minute of advertising is devoted to national ads, the remaining third for local.

I'm curious to know where you got those figures from. There's no way you're talking about a 24 hour average so I'd also like to know while time slot that ratio is supposed to refer to.

Even without the broadcast model, the local affiliate is still an essential part of the infrastructure when it comes to news, regional broadcasts, and tailoring of content delivery to the community.

While there's no denying that, for now, local affiliates are still important, you can't ignore the on-going data which shows people are moving away from local tv stations and more towards pay-service & streaming content providers. The playing field is changing shape along with the way people want and receive their "news" & entertainment.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: US vs the World
by Alfman on Sat 26th May 2012 06:07 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: US vs the World"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

deathshadow,

"3.6 million * 0.26 = 936 million dollars a month sounds impressive... But compare to say... the dozen or so prime-time advertising slots averaging $100k/pop PER SHOWING? They make that billion or so in a DAY of advertising...."


I'm truthfully having trouble following most of your figures, so I won't attempt a rebuttal.

I wish I had enough money to nonchalantly dismiss hundreds of millions of dollars per year like you do ;)

Reply Score: 2

It was Disney
by jefro on Sat 26th May 2012 00:04 UTC
jefro
Member since:
2007-04-13

This is not news. This issue has gone on for 20 years or so.

Yes, seems kind of odd to pay for dish and have to watch ads.

Reply Score: 2