Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Merging of Broadcast and Cable

So what is the difference between say ABC and Bloomberg, or NBC and USA. To today's audience, they are both simply networks on their cable line-up. One may be more general interest, one may or may not be more niche. This merging into one box called TV content may signify the greater trend occurring. In fact, broadcast networks own cable nets just like NBC owns USA.

So that there is news that broadcast and cable news operations may combine is simply the beginning to full scale ownership of the operation. CBS and CNN sharing news resources, great; how about one corporation simply merging with the other. "It’s all understandable: With the news industry battered by a still-foundering economy and splintered media landscape, questions of whether such marriages of convenience and economic viability are the future for broadcast news become inevitable."

To me, it is inevitable that content companies will continue to merge to find their economies of scale. Both in news and entertainment content. Where there used to be many cable operators in the market, today the top 5 own a vast majority of the marketplace. For content companies, some mergers have occurred and more seem forthcoming. At the same time, the merging of contet companies with distributors may be the end result of this slippery slope. With a Comcast and NBC merger comes also the concern that too much power in the hands of too few will limit new growth and innovation, especially that Comcast owns the broadband pipeline as well as the cable connection. Or lead to the death of TV at the hands of a wireless revolution.

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