D & P BLOG

Behind the scenes of the Cable TV industry

Have you ever wondered what goes into determining how much you pay for Cable TV? This week, we’re going to go behind the scenes and give you a look at the economics of the Cable industry.

Because of the amount of technology and infrastructure involved, the Cable industry is an expensive one to be in. As a result, in order to keep prices as low as possible for our customers while keeping our quality of service high, we have to constantly negotiate with content providers for the best possible deal.

When it comes to local channels, we negotiate rates on our own with station owners in markets like Detroit and Toledo. On a national level, D&P Communications is part of the National Cable Television Cooperative, a network of over 850 independent Cable providers across the United States. Being part of NCTC helps us level the playing field between ourselves, a small local company, and huge multinational firms like Viacom or Disney.  This helps us get the best possible rates for the Cable channels we offer, which in turn helps us keep prices reasonable for our customers.

Sometimes these negotiations are simple. Other times they’re not. One ongoing example you may have already heard of involves AMC Networks, which owns not just the AMC channel itself, but also IFC, SundanceTV and WeTV, in addition to providing access to BBC America.

AMC Networks recently told us they wanted a 10-year agreement that would include a massive hike in the price of their channels. Negotiators with NCTC are working on our behalf to reach a deal that will allow us, along with 850-plus other independent Cable providers, to continue offering AMC channels without a price increase that would be unreasonable to ask our customers to pay. A January 1 blackout date was averted when AMC agreed to continue talks with NCTC past the midnight deadline, and the negotiations are still ongoing.

We know that the networks need to make money, and we understand that some cost increases may be reasonable. But our first priority has to be looking out for our customers. By negotiating with content providers and banding together with other independent Cable providers, we are able to keep prices low for you while providing the best service we possibly can.

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