reply to no idea
said by no idea :It used to be that cable companies had to carry every station within a 60 mile radius and the stations couldn't charge any retrans fees.
Yeah but isn't this double-dipping? I mean when broadcast TV started out, it was paid for by advertisers, not consumers, who were free to watch it. Now, even when you pay for TV, the advertisers continue to pay for their side. This seems wrong that this changed. Either it should be free for consumers and advertisers pay the costs (whatever they be and even if those costs go up) to reach the consumer, or the consumer should pay for TV and get it without the Ads since the infrastructure install and upgrade money now comes from the consumer instead.
It's not that it's free but which side should truely bear the costs of this service (and therefore dictate how the service should exist).
Just me 2 cents...
Then Ted Turner and the cable companies sued for that to change.
So eventually we ended up with what we have now - either the station must be carried and no fees can be charged to the cable provider or they negotiate.
What you see happening is that the more desirable channels are negotiating a fair price for their product because they realize that it has value. The cable companies realize this as well but they want to make the most out of their inevitable rate increases so they bully the networks and run a mud slinging campaign. Really, the amount that the networks ask for isn't that much. Certainly, in many cases it doesn't justify the $5 and more annual cable rate increases many of us have been seeing.
As for cable only networks? It is totally voluntary. Most of them carry fewer ads than their OTA counterparts, or their ads are priced lower. But they can't run a station without any advertising otherwise you would be paying $15 per channel like you do with HBO.
TV is an expensive business.