Panicked Over Cable-Cutters, Media Giants Get Stupid

Panicked Over Cable-Cutters, Media Giants Get Stupid

Bundled cable is an affirmative action program for the Left’s cultural stranglehold.

With these enforced packages, we pay outrageous fees for dozens if not hundreds of cable channels we never watch. But we still pay for these channels though our cable bill. We still pay for MSNBC and Oprah and all these other channels hostile to who we are, our country, and our beliefs.

Ratings no longer have anything to do with keeping these channels broadcasting. It is subscribers and, as subscribers, for example, if we want Fox News we have to get MSNBC; if we want Turner Classic Movies, we have to get the Sundance Channel.

It’s the biggest legalized scam in America right now, and the only hope to put an end to it is people canceling their cable and moving over to streaming. Right now, streaming is exploding, while cable subscriptions have flat-lined or dipped slightly. This scares the hell out of everyone in Hollywood, and should.

Streaming is an existential threat to Hollywood’s bundled cable cash cow. And so, the media giants will now try this:

Viewers who stream network TV shows may soon discover the free ride is not so free.

Hulu, which attracted 31 million unique users in March under a free-for-all model, is taking its first steps to change to a model where viewers will have to prove they are a pay-TV customer to watch their favorite shows, sources tell The Post.

In fact, the move by Hulu toward the new model — called authentication because viewers would have to log in with their cable or satellite TV account number — was behind the move last week by Providence Equity Partners to cash out of Hulu after five years, these sources said.

And it’s not just Hulu making it tougher for cable-cutters to stream shows and other content.

Fox, owned by News Corp., which also owns The Post, is expected to begin talks soon with Comcast on a TV Everywhere deal that will require authentication. Plus, Philadelphia-based Comcast is expected to switch to an authentication model for this summer’s Olympic Games (see story at right).

The move toward authentication is fueled by cable companies and networks looking to protect and profit from their content.

This is buggy whip makers attempting to force you to buy a buggy whip with each new Model-T.

That’s not a perfect analogy, obviously, but like Hollywood attempting to salvage DVD sales through 28 day waiting periods forced on Netflix and Redbox, this is doomed to failure.

Unfortunately for Hollywood, people are willing to wait to view their content and eventually the media giants will be forced to go where the customers are, and we will be streaming.

This kind of blackmail that says you can’t watch our content unless you pay $55 to $120 for cable television will simply mean fewer people watch their content. That is not a sustainable business plan.