Friday, February 22, 2013

Sports Programming Causes Higher Cable Fees

Players demand higher salaries, owners want bigger profits, ticket prices go up and so does the cost of TV rights to air games.  And ultimately, the payer of all these fees is us the consumer.  So it is that cause and effect that has led cable operators to raise their monthly cable subscription rates to consumers taking sports programming.  "DIRECTV last September added a $3 monthly sports fee to the bills of new customers in roughly 20 percent of U.S. markets. ... Verizon followed DIRECTV's lead, adding a $2.42 surcharge for sports in select markets with all markets getting it by April."  And third on the list is Cablevision, adding $3 a month to cable bills for rising sports costs.  

None of the articles I read mentioned particularly which sports networks were in this package.  Was it just the regional sports networks (RSN) like YES or SNY in New York or did it also include national sports networks like ESPN.  Still, the question will be, will consumers accept this high increase to their monthly bill or will it only lead to more cord shaving and cord cutting.  Will consumers stop taking the sports package or go as far as to stop taking their cable subscription all together?  The one fact is crystal clear, cable rates are not going down and as each cable operator follows suit with these higher package fees, the web may be the only escape.