The Steps Away From Broadcast Television

in LeoFinance10 months ago

Many saw this coming.

Broadcast television is going the way of the dinosaurs. We can start to add this to the list of industries that was obliterated by technology. The writing is more than on the wall, it is starting to jump out.

For much of the last decade, the number of pay television customers dwindled. This is a macro trend that is firmly in place. What this means is that we are going to see a complete revamping in the television industry. How that looks is still to be determined. What we know is that it will not mirror the present cable industry.

Cord Cutting Accelerating

The numbers over the last decade look bad. Any industry that is operating under this type of growth (or lack thereof) is really in trouble. This mean broadcast television is under siege. How will it survive? The odds are it will not.

Here is a chart that shows the growth rates for much of the last decade.


That is a lot of negative numbers. Over the span of this chart, 6 years, there was only one quarter where growth was registered and that came in at .1%. The rest of the time is negative.

We also can see how things accelerated over time. While much of the chart is a slow bleed, things fell off a cliff towards the end there. The chart is two years old so we do not have the most up-to-date numbers. That said, we can presume the trend continued.

In fact, we find this from a Forbes article:

Since 2014, the number of people who have cut the cord on their cable, satellite or telco subscription (or never had a subscription at all) has more than tripled, going from 15.6 million to a projected 50.4 million this year.

Sadly, for the broadcasters, this is only getting worse.

The report notes that cable lost more subscribers in Q1 of this year than last year, down 1.8%. That's almost double the 1% loss suffered in Q1 2020.

Just as we suspected. The pace is increasing.

The number of homes that have traditional pay TV has fallen to 75.6 million, down from 96.9 million just four years earlier. In that time, subscriptions to pay TV have fallen by 22%, reflecting the growing change in the industry that is beginning to play out in corporate decision-making, too.

There is no way to sugar coat this. It is bad no matter which way you look at it. Anyone in this industry is trying to figure out how to stem these losses. The reality is that things might get worse.

Taking Matters Into Their Own Hands

Sports is a huge driver of cable subscriptions. It is one of the more popular forms of entertainment, probably something that saved the broadcast industry.

At least that was the case.

We now see Major League Baseball, suffering from its own loss of viewership, taking matters into their own hands. Due to the reduction in ratings, it seems it is looking at keeping a bigger portion of the pie.


That has to really get executives at the cable companies stirring. Can you imagine the impact that a service like this would affect their business?

Of course, here is where we interject the proverbial: but wait, there is more.

The National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League are also considering partnering with MLB on the new streaming service, sources said. Insiders say subscription rates would vary by geographic market and could be between $10 and $20 a month — well below the monthly cost of most cable-TV packages, which can easily stretch past $100.


Seems MLB is not the only one interesting in doing this. If the NHL and NBA join them, that might sway a lot more people to dump cable. It is hard to know how many keep paying the monthly bill simply for the sports, but this could eliminate that.

Here again, we are watching an industry die before our eyes. The problem for broadcast television is they are just a repeat of the Nightly Network News of 3 decades ago.

That was an audience made up of the Greatest and Silent Generation. Over time, they started to die out. As we started to get exposed to more information, especially with the Internet, less people were tuning into the Nightly News. After all, you had it each time an email application was opened.

This meant the Baby Boomers were not intent on watching it. Yet, this is the generation that is still tied to broadcast television (and the bill associated with it). The generations behind them are less interested. Generation X was the first to start cutting the cord and the Millennials never got cable to begin with.

All of this leads to the countdown until the end. With Disney and HBO joining Netflix, the streaming family of channels only grew. If sporting events are added in, this could be the death blow to broadcast television.

Of course, lurking is Starlink. Imagine what the cables companies will do if Musk comes in and starts to undercut them for Internet service.

Things are changing very quickly.

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When I had to set up internet for a place I was moving into, they asked me if I wanted cable and I said no because I can get anything I want to watch online. It's pretty much the case and most of the stuff on cable is just average and not really good enough to justify the cost.

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I dumped cable more than 12 years ago and havent had it since. Nothing that is on television that I miss.

In fact, as the years pass, it is easier to get what is desired online.

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I haven't had cable in many years now and I'm not going back.

It's just pointless... even before streaming was consolidated it has very little value to me.

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Many, especially the younger generations, feel that way.

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I haven't had cable for a very long time and honestly life has been amazing without it! So much free time to do things I enjoy instead. Huge savings in money each month. There's so many taxes and surcharges on cable tv its dumb. I think it was $120 a month for some pretty basic plan.

Instead I just get Amazon video (which I'll most likely dump prime here soon), Netflix and that's it for like $12 a month a huge cost savings and I've thinking about shutting off netflix soon as well and maybe getting it a few months down the road if there's a season of something I want to want.

I mean seriously imagine paying $120 while wasting huge amounts of time watching commercials. Nearly 40% of a half hour show was commercials lol. They pretty much dug their own grave and had all the chances in the world to step up but they where too old school to ever notice. In fact they have been known now to charge existing customers even more money to make up for the lost customers lol

Same here. I got Netflix and tried Hulu, but paying and still having commercials killed that instantly for me.

I still hop from one to another periodically to catch up on something but I don't carry any of the streaming services full time either, except HBO max because it's added to my mobile plan.

I hardly even try to find anything there either... so much garbage, not worth wasting my time to browse for confirmation it's all garbage most times.

But it does call to mind something @taskmaster4450 either said in a post or inspired me to realize on my own, and that's how valuable we are. The money these services spend and the trash they spew out to get our attention is ridiculous.

I don't like doing anything now that I don't get paid for. Blogging, gaming, entertainment... too many people itching to get in front of me to give it up for Amazon Prime's free movie of the week starring Ringo Ballhound and Katie Katstench.

I don't like doing anything now that I don't get paid for.

The attention economy is forming.

There will be more people who view things the same way you do.

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Well, shit, man... why would anyone do anything for free anymore? The only reason I ever did was out of necessity. Now I can get paid for existing so why would I want to leak value for someone else to cash in while I do without? I call bullshit and I don't want to play anymore!

Seriously, though, I'm still struggling with the betrayals of my youth, wherein I was taught/allowed to throw money into the consumerist void without any education relating to financial planning, management, and responsibility.

And this wasn't just a failure to blame entirely on my parents. They were seduced/trapped by the same non-sense. My "General Business" class in high school taught me how to balance my checkbook, while my math teacher drilled how we were gonna need this on the construction sites when we go to work.

No one told me why it was wasteful to blow money on over-priced posters, t-shirts, and shitty music that was made specifically to milk me of every nickel.

Sure, the elders disapproved of my taste, but it was always because God didn't like Motley Crue, not because it was a racket designed to bleed me.

I can't think of one thing our society doesn't do ass backwards and I've come to understand that it's not just us, the whole world is crazy as fuck, but we seem to be the only species with the ability to look at things from an overview and make adjustments and we just haven't learned how to do that responsibly or efficiently yet. I kinda think we'll get there, though... even if it's only long enough to make it to the next save point before regressing three steps back again... at least we'll have a new mark to target, fall short of over and over, and eventually surpass to discover a whole new set of problems to wrestle with for another century or two... goddamn this is a crazy ride...

There will be more people who view things the same way you do.

It can't come soon enough if you ask me.

I'm looking forward to the day everyone I see has a glow of understanding of the power we wield... although I imagine few people will grasp it for what it is. Most people will just think baby Jesus finally decided to smile again and fa la la off into a new and improved oblivion.

There will be more people who view things the same way you do.

It can't come soon enough if you ask me.

I'm looking forward to the day everyone I see has a glow of understanding of the power we wield... although I imagine few people will grasp it for what it is. Most people will just think baby Jesus finally decided to smile again and fa la la off into a new and improved oblivion.

That is true. Where I am, the one thing that cant be avoided is dealing with them for internet.

It is why I have high hopes for Starlink. My hope is they look to demolish the cable companies by, as they get global coverage, adjusting their plans to make then serious less than what the present companies charge.

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I’m amazed this has taken so long. Broadcast TV made sense when it was analog, but TV went digital more than a decade ago.

Cable was a major breakthrough when we were switching from rooftop antennas and "rabbit ears". But you are right, the switch to digital really changed the game entirely.

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I never got cable myself because I couldn't even afford it if I wanted it lol. Netflix at $7 (now $13? I think) is much cheaper, and various other streaming services like Disney and Hbomax I have access too by sharing accounts with friends.

There are many who are in the same boat. They simply were not going to lay out the money.

Fortunately, there are already other alternatives and it is spreading.

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Today with broadband internet services becomming more affordable than ever, now is the time for the streaming companies to rule. Who thought back in the 90s and early 2000s that companies like BlockBuster or Hollywood video would be driven out of business by Netflix, Hulu, etc.

Like many things, distribution models are being disrupted.

What happens when people are getting much of their content (entertainment) while sitting in an autonomous vehicle. You think they will be connected to the cable company?

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Bang, I did it again... I just rehived your post!






@taskmaster4450le, you've been given LUV from @pixresteemer.

Check the LUV in your H-E wallet. (1/5)


 10 months ago Reveal Comment