Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Some advice for the FCC

Yesterday an official from the FCC announced that cable and satellite programmers need to "clean up their act" in regards to the type of television programming that is viewed by American citizens. One of the recommendations is to enact "ala carte" programming so that people can choose what types of programs are coming into their homes. So for example, if I want to see CNN, ESPN and Lifetime, I would be charged a fee for each of those networks by the cable company. They believe that the high cost of cable and satellite television would decrease if this "ala carte" option were made available.

Sounds pretty good huh? Lower prices for cable and satellite services?

Keep this in mind. If "ala carte" pricing goes into place, the biggest impact will be to those channels which do not see the largest viewing audiences. The cable and satellite providers could decide to eliminate channels due to the fact that they are not requested as much by most subscribers in the ala carte process. What we will be left with is fewer channels and less programming opportunities. Basically, the exact things we all had prior to introduction of cable or satellite TV to society.

And what about the parental locking feature available on the remote? Or the V-Chip? If you do not want Johnny or Suzie to watch particular shows that you deem objectionable, you already have the option of blocking that programming out based on the new television rating system that is in place.
It takes less than five seconds to lock the programming down.

To be honest, there are probably more television networks on cable/satellite than are really necessary. However, I want to have the option of discovering those new channels myself without having to jump through hoops to access them.

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