Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Cable television model is broken; Not getting programming I want, like 'Ashes to Ashes'


I was excited to learn that season two of the BBC TV series “Ashes to Ashes” would begin airing in the states on Tuesday May 11. But unfortunately my cable company, Cablevision, doesn’t carry BBC America so I won’t be able to watch it.
It’s yet another sign that the cable television model is broken. I pay for dozens of channels that I don’t want, but can’t get one channel that I do want.
Hopefully I can find a website that is streaming "Ashes to Ashes," though I’m not thrilled about watching the show on my PC. Or I’ll have to wait for the DVD to come out and get it from Netflix.
When this happens, it forces consumers like me to think about other ways of getting video, especially online from Hulu, Netflix, TV.com and elsewhere.
What I want is to subscribe to individual channels on an a la carte basis, something TV services have resisted. I don’t want to subsidize the Food Network, the Golf Channel and a bunch of other channels I don’t watch.
But content owners are getting more demanding and want more money from cable, satellite and telco TV operators. We’ve already seen News Corp. take on Time Warner Cable over Fox fees and Disney battle with Cablevision over ABC fees.
But monthly TV bills can only go so high before consumers start looking for alternatives.
Count me in that camp.

Photos: “Ashes to Ashes” second two DVD cover and still from the show.

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