PTC research has shown that some of the most offensive content imaginable is now readily available on basic cable during all hours of the day.
“During these hard economic times, consumers do not need to pay for cable channels that they do not want or watch. With the exception of cable television, no other media sector requires customers to purchase a product they do not want – or that they may even find harmful or offensive – in order to consume a product that they do want,” Rebekah Robertson, PTC Lubbock Chapter Director, said. “If you purchase Sports Illustrated magazine, are you also forced to purchase People magazine? Such an idea would be absurd, but that’s a good example of the current cable model.”
A 2006 FCC study revealed that consumers’ cable bills would decrease between 3 to 13 percent with cable choice. In an unrelated January 2007 report, the FCC found that cable rates nearly doubled in a 10-year time period.
PTC President Tim Winter explained why consumers cannot currently choose and pay for only the cable networks they want. “The cable network programmers have a chokehold on the public. They make billions of dollars every year by forcing consumers to pay them for channels they don’t watch, don’t want, and may actually find offensive. And the programmers force their bundle onto every distributor, whether it is a cable system or a satellite operator. There is no alternative,” he said. “The Senate should take the lead on making cable choice happen this year. Unfortunately, the cable networks have shown no willingness to make this happen.”
With the PTC’s web site, www.HowCableShouldBe.com, visitors can choose the cable networks they want, and then find out how much their cable bill would be if they only subscribed to the networks they wanted.