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Viacom Uses Fans As Hostages: Blocks Daily Show, Colbert Streams For Everyone To Spite DirecTV

from the um.-overkill dept

So, as the dispute between Viacom and DirecTV over how much money Viacom wants for its channels wore on, the various Viacom channels like MTV, Comedy Central and Nickelodian disappeared for DirecTV subscribers. As often happens in such situations, DirecTV told its customers that they regretted the situation and were working on it, but in the meantime, they could check out missing programs online. Viacom's massive overkill response? Pull the free streams it offers online of two of its most popular shows: The Daily Show and The Colbert Report. For everyone. Not just DirecTV subscribers. Because, apparently, pissing off consumers and driving them to unauthorized means, is... um... I don't know... supposedly going to get them on Viacom's side? This is the kind of "strategic" thinking that goes on at Viacom, apparently.
Of course, this really highlights the exceptionally distorted economics of the cable/satellite TV business, where it makes more sense to block your direct relationship with fans and piss them off... in the hopes that it might make the satellite provider to pay you more money. Viacom's new motto, apparently, is: Using our fans as hostages. This is why the TV market is so ripe for disruption.


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  1.  
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    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 7:46am

    Disruption

    This is why the TV market is so ripe for disruption.

    On that note, the judge in the Aereo case has refused to issue an injunction forcing Aereo to stop providing their over-the-air broadcast TV streaming online.

    http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2012/07/judge-rules-against-broadcasters-denying-injun ction-against-aereo-tv/

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 7:55am

    Cue the usual trolls butting in to say this is their content, and somehow, this action was for the benefit of consumers.

    If by benefiting consumers you mean open up alternatives, though...

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 7:56am

    How sad. The level of stupidity amongst these companies is mind-boggling. I honestly cannot comprehend their perspective. The only conclusion I can come up with is they are greedy and dumb. In the end, they won't have enough money to be greedy.

     

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    Bas Grasmayer (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 7:58am

    Take that fans, in your face! I bet that will teach you not to... erm... oh.

    I bet Colbert and Stewart are going to have a field day with this.

     

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  5.  
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    Makoto (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 7:59am

    Fade into Irrelevance

    This isn't a good move at all. I mean, I enjoy the Colbert Report and watching it online is my only real way of accessing the content. If I can't enjoy content on my terms and time, then the content just doesn't exist.

    A move like this could make these channels fade into irrelevance, as other options of entertainment are starting to become commonplace.

     

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  6.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:02am

    Wait, so in order to argue a contract dispute with a distributor, Viacom's response was to remove a service *from its own customers*?

    Can anyone come up with another industry where this would even be considered *sane*, let alone the right response?

     

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  7.  
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    Doug D (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:03am

    I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    Right after this happened, what did DirecTV do in response?

    They decided to give all the "Encore" movie channels to subscribers for free until the 31st.

    I couldn't watch a re-run of the Daily Show last night, and had to instead make due with a free Sean Connery "Bond" film? Okay, *which* company are people going to side with?

     

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    John Doe, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:05am

    Re:

    Can anyone come up with another industry where this would even be considered *sane*, let alone the right response?

    The music industry?

     

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  9.  
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    vilain (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:05am

    Why aren't Colbert and John Steward looking to move

    If the distributor isn't doing their job by making their content available, why aren't Colbert and John Stewart's attorneys now screaming at Viacom to get their head outta their collective anni? If that's not part of their contracts, it sure ought to be. "Keep your corporate hands offa my show or you loose the right to distribute it. Where _I_ want it distributed."

     

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    el_segfaulto (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:06am

    Re:

    My theory is that most CEOs and marketing types never got over the 6 year old "me me me" phase and they simply want to take their ball and go home.

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:09am

    Quick question: How is this to spite DirecTV? Wouldn't this be spiting Viacom since they are the cause of the problem in the first place for wanting an extra $1billion from DirecTV's customers?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:09am

    Re:

    I bet Colbert and Stewart are going to have a field day with this.

    Not that anyone will see it =P

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:09am

    Re:

    Today I learned people don't tend to make smart choices when they're angry.

     

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    Karim, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:09am

    Artifactivity

    I doubt that everyone at Viacom agrees with the decision. It really does sound more like the result of a tantrum of some cigar-smoking grumpy old geezer has-been and his sycophantic trollings.

     

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    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:10am

    Re: Re:

    And the movie industry.

    (see Redbox fight over DVD rentals)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:12am

    these are parts of the entertainment industries. since when have they ever given a toss about customers? when they are put into the position of losing money, perhaps even having to cease to be, all they look for is someone to blame for their own failings. usually, that's the very customers they rely on but have crapped on and who have left because of being crapped on. that dont count though!!

     

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    Nigel (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:13am

    Fine, I will download it 2 hours before it airs in my time zone, commercial free.

    Nigel

     

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  18.  
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    Cory of PC (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:14am

    Re:

    I was thinking the same thing. Considering what Stewart said about Viacom during the SOPA blackout, I'm going to guess this is going to give the writers more material for the whole "biting the hand" humor.

     

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  19.  
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    Vog (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:14am

    Death.

    Throes.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:15am

    For 'normal' TV (and really, any service where most income comes from ads), viewers are not the customers. Viewers are the product.

    But it still doesn't make sense.

     

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  21.  
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    Trish, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:15am

    *consumers reaction*

    where will I get my entertainment now? oh wait...

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:18am

    Re:

    Its an attempt to put more pressure on DTV to settle because they were directing subscribers to the web.

    But neither side really makes sense to me. DTV and Dish are afraid of people cutting the cord so what do they do when in a contract dispute? They direct people to Amazon/itunes, hulu, netflix etc, give people credits off their bill for buying episodes online, and give away streaming (roku) devices that show people they really don't need these expensive services.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:18am

    Supplementing this news.

    Viacom canned not 2 but a lot of shows that it was putting out for free.

    Quote:
    Shows for which full episodes are no longer available include: Comedy Central's Daily Show and The Colbert Report; Nick's SpongeBob SquarePants, Victorious and iCarly; Nick Jr.'s Dora the Explorer; MTV's Jersey Shore and Teen Mom; and TV Land's Hot in Cleveland.


    http://www.multichannel.com/article/487036-Viacom_Yanks_Free_TV_Shows_From_Web_Amid_Di recTV_Impasse.php

    And according to Viacom the internet is only to serve as promotional marketing tool.

    Quote:
    According to a Viacom spokesman, the company is still offering hundreds of free episodes online but chose to pare back the number of full-length shows available because DirecTV is marketing the Internet video destinations as an alternative to the full networks. Viacom has always intended free online episodes to be a promotional marketing tool for affiliates, he added.


    Kicking and screaming Viacom needs to be dragged around.

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:19am

    I've stopped getting my product out to market so people will go elsewhere, take that directTV!

    ....Huh, that may not have been a smart move.


    DAMN YOU DIRECTTV YOU MAKE ME NOT THINK GOOD!

     

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  25.  
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    DannyB (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:22am

    And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    This would be a reason.

    In addition, the fact that it's increasingly impossible to find anything to watch despite having a couple hundred channels.

    The whole idea of splitting a cable up into channels is a technological artifact from the previous millennium. All I need is a single channel -- The Internet. Then all I need is the bandwidth for the one program I am watching, from the one server I am connected to. For example, NetFlix, or Hulu Plus or Amazon Prime, or YouTube, or direct to some cable channel websites. Or (gasp!) other programming independent of cable or satellite!

    The whole idea of splitting programming up into time slots is a technological artifact from the previous millennium. All I need is an internet connection to a server that lets me watch what I want NOW, when I'm ready. And pause it. Come back tomorrow and resume if I want to.

    The whole idea of broadcast is a technological artifact from the previous millennium. Centralized broadcasters, many receivers. It should work the other way, like the Internet does. Setup a server and I come to you. Not the other way, where your broadcast waves cross my property line -- but more importantly must be allocated a chunk of valuable spectrum. By setting up a server on the internet, a content provider uses no dedicated pre-allocated spectrum that is just for their use.

    There is no limit to how many servers can be set up, just like the web. It's just that serving audio, and then later video are just higher and higher hurdles to jump. But the technology to do this continues to become more and more accessible. Any idiot can upload a video to YouTube. (Yes, surprisingly, it is true. I could provide examples, but leave this as an exercise for the reader to confirm.) With somewhat more effort you can set up a streaming server that streams your cat live, or a menu of pre recorded videos of your kids. Obviously this same approachable technology could be used by anyone with something to say -- just like the web did for print.

    Yes, there are some costs for scaling up video servers -- but its getting cheaper and more approachable every day. Once upon a time a box to act as a web server was somewhat of a hurdle to set up and expensive. (Price of a Unix workstation in the tens of thousands, fat internet pipe, understanding how to configure bind, zones, etc, etc.)

    But by all means -- while the world is changing around you -- slowly but surely -- go ahead and hold your audience hostage for more money. Do you assume the audience is so stupid that they don't know that the greater money you are holding them hostage for is ultimately going to come from: the audience being held hostage?

    The world never changes overnight. It's a gradual slow process. There wasn't one single day when the microcomputer took over from mainframes. But it happened even though there is no single day you can point to when it did.

    My point is this. The best thing you can do while the world is changing around you is to put your head in the sand, put your fingers in your ears, sing La la la la la, and try to get new laws passed. Oh, and hold hostage the very audience who you want more money from -- they'll just love you for that!

     

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  26.  
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    Jes Lookin, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:24am

    Payola Go ?

    My main problem with subscription media: Does it have commercials (already paid for), then it should be free. For DirectTV, they should be getting paid to distribute Viacom's generally stupid and repetitive content NOT the other way around. The underlying problem is probably that all the 'company entities' involved are all owned by the same real company and it's just a stupid money shuffle.

     

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  27.  
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    Richard (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:25am

    Re: Re: Re:

    And the lancashire building contractor industry 70 years ago apparently.

    I'll wheel out Stanley Holloway again for those who missed it before.
    Full story here http://sniff.numachi.com/pages/tiHAPNCEFT.html

    Some choice extracts:

    One day Sam were filling a knot hole
    With putty when in through the door,
    Came an old man fair reeked i'whiskers
    An th'old man said good morning I'm Noah.

    Sam asked Noah what were his business
    And t'old chap went on to remark,
    That not liking the look of the weather
    He was thinking of building an ark.

    He'd got all the wood for the bulwarks
    And all t'other shipbuilding junk,
    Now he wanted some nice birds-eye maple
    To panel the sides of his bunk.

    Now maple were Sams monopoly
    That means it were all his to cut,
    And nobody else hadn't got none
    So he asked Noah three ha'pence a foot.

    A ha'penny too much replied Noah
    Penny a foots more the mark,
    A penny a foot and when rain comes
    I'll give you a ride in my ark.

    But neither would budge in the bargain
    The whole thing were kind of a jam,
    So Sam put his tongue out at Noah
    And Noah made long bacon at Sam.


    Of course things didn't work out for Sam - because of his obstinacy:


    In wrath and ill-feeling they parted
    Not knowing when they'd meet again,
    And Sam 'ad forgot all about it
    'Til one day it started to rain.
    ...
    ...
    He stood to his watch-chain in water
    On tower-top just before dark,
    When who should come sailing towards him
    But old Noah steering his ark.

    They stared at each other in silence
    'Til ark were alongside all but,
    Then Noah said what price yon maple
    Sam answered three ha'pence a foot.

    Noah said nay I'll make thee an offer
    Same as I did t'other day,
    A penny a foot and a free ride
    Now come on lad what do thee say.

    Three ha'pence a foot came the answer
    So Noah his sail had to hoist,
    And sail off again in a dudgeon
    While Sam stood determined but moist.
    ...
    ...
    His chin just stuck out of the water
    A comical figure he cut,
    Noah said now whats the price of yon maple
    And Sam answered three ha'pence a foot.

    Said Noah you'd best take my offer
    It's the last time I'll be hereabouts,
    And if water comes half an inch higher
    I'll happen get maple for nowt.


    Eventually DirecTV may get a much better bargain...

     

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  28.  
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    Joe, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:29am

    welcome to normal day as a Canadian...

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:29am

    Re:

    The media industry is often on drugs. Look at movie stars, often in rehab.

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward With A Unique Writing Style, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:30am

    Re: Re:

    "Not that anyone will see it =P"

    Well, as a Dish Network subscriber, I will get to see it. Although we currently are without AMC, IFC and one more channel (I forget the name of).

    But, to make up for it, if you're a Dish Network subscriber and you call Customer Service you can either get credit towards your bill or... my favorite option which I'm going to try for this afternoon... get a FREE Roku 2 box (so that if you have broadband you can still access AMC content through one of the options online). They may give more than one box depending on your situation. Since we have a ton of receivers in our home, I'm shooting for getting at least two boxes, which I think they'll allow. It's basically taken on a case per case basis as far as what Dish Network is willing to give you for the loss of said channels.

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:31am

    Cut the cord years ago - Will never look back. THOUSANDS saved!

    nuff said!

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward With A Unique Writing Style, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:32am

    Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    Excuse me? "had to instead make due with a free Sean Connery "Bond" film?" Are you insane?! Those are the best, and I'm too young to have even seen them when they originally came out. But with the exception of Goldeneye and the two Daniel Craig "Bond" films, Sean Connery's are my favorite portrayals.

    And you know what, Dish Network does a similar thing when they lose channels. I know since the AMC dispute/loss there's been a few additions I've seen on the program guide that weren't there before. At least two of which are movie channels. Cube was on one the other night, which if you haven't heard of/seen... GO DO SO IMMEDIATELY!

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:33am

    This is why the cable TV model needs to die.

    To them it's all about taking their own viewers hostage to collect a ransom from the cable and satellite providers.

    And cable and satellite providers are pushing themselves towards extinction by giving into the hostage situation and raising their prices year after year. I mean, TRIPLING your prices over an 11 year period is an unsustainable business model for any industry. This is part of why Hulu and Netflix are doing so well, the have reasonable prices.

    If cable and satellite providers all got together and said NO at the same time then Viacom and others would be forced to give in, or lose all their revenue streams. But of course Viacom won't let that happen, they make their deals end at different times on purpose, so that customers can jump to another cable/satellite provider if one of them refuses to pay the ransom. Also, it would probably break anti-monopoly laws for them to all get together and pressure Viacom and others together.

     

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  34.  
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    Baldaur Regis (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:35am

    Re:

    The day is rapidly approaching when 'filthy pirate' will morph into 'visionary consumer'.

     

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  35.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:36am

    Re:

    "Death.

    Throes."

    Life leaps and makes the interception! He's heading for the endzone!

     

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  36.  
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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:37am

    Re: Why aren't Colbert and John Steward looking to move

    As near as I can figure, contracts with big studios include a steel-tether around ones genitalia for the duration of the contract.

    If ever on of the contracted individuals does something the studio deems undesirable, the studio "hangs them out to dry" for awhile.

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:38am

    Re:

    May the bubble burst.

     

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  38.  
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    Paul Pentz (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:40am

    They don't even realize...

    ...that nobody watches their channels anyway.

     

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  39.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:41am

    Re: Supplementing this news.

    Funny, because online is the only way I watch these shows.

    They act like there isn't anything else in the world to entertain or inform me. Your content won't be missed, Viacom. I have the internet.

     

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    Phillip (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:43am

    Re:

    this seems as a mostly meaningless pull at the moment, as both shows are currently on a break and no new episodes are currently being created.

    We'll see what actually happens when these guys get back from vacation.

     

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  41.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:43am

    Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    If I can't push pause, I don't watch it. It's a pretty simple rule.

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:46am

    Re: Re: Supplementing this news.

    Online is the only way i *can get* these shows. I watch the daily show and the colbert report almost daily, but only online. Luckily there is a lot of other stuff online.

     

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  43.  
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    Phillip (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:47am

    Re: Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    i think someone missed the sarcasm

     

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  44.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:50am

    Re: Re:

    They will if they get Comedy Central. =P

     

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  45.  
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    weneedhelp (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:51am

    Extortion

    "Nick's SpongeBob SquarePants, Victorious and iCarly; Nick Jr.'s Dora the Explorer"


    Guess what V. I am a parent with a bit torrent client and a buncha terabyte drives. Try me.

     

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  46.  
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    Anonymous Coward With A Unique Writing Style, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:54am

    Re: Re: Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    Dang! I did miss the sarcasm. I haven't had my caffeine fix yet, sorry.

    Apologies Doug D.

     

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  47.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:55am

    Re: Re:

    That day has already come and gone.

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:56am

    Re: *consumers reaction*

    You remembered Johnny Dep didn't you?

     

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  49.  
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    Gwiz (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:58am

    Re: Re:

    Life leaps and makes the interception! He's heading for the endzone!

    An immaculate interception?

     

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  50.  
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    Keii (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:59am

    Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    In defense, websites are just internet channels. :)

     

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  51.  
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    Dan, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:00am

    Provide the actual numbers!

    I am and have been a satified Direct TV customer. Let's face it, both Direct TV and Viacom have their share of customer problems (past, present, and future). Both want as much as they can get. Both have had multiple months to come to an agreement. Then when faced with the deadline, they claim they are working for customers? How is that? Working for US? By not coming to an agreement? By engaging us in their business conversation? By engaging in deceptive analyses?

    Thanks for the concise, "billion dollars and 30% increase" analysis Direct TV. Same for the Viacom analysis... "pennies per subscriber"? What does any of that mean? If the cost was $1, and it went up "30 cents" to $1.30, would anyone complain? I doubt it. But try to get the real numbers from either company and you hit a wall. I have requested in writing the exact figures, and neither responded. COST PER SUBSCRIBER... BEFORE AND AFTER FOR THE SPECIFIC VIACOM PACKAGE BEING NEGOTIATED. REALLY IS THIS SO SECRET?

    "They" seem all too willing, in this battle they decided to take to the social media crowd, to sympathize with the "public outrage". There we hear parents complaining that their kids want to watch Spongebob and are being denied...along with the "evil and greedy corporations". Yes, this is the way to settle disputes. I would love to see what actually happens at the negotiating table... do they bring out a pile of idiotic comments from their "fans"? That is "getting to yes"?

    Send me the current and proposed cost per subscriber, then I will decide based on that number whether I want to pay. Simple as that.

     

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  52.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:00am

    Re: Payola Go ?

    This is what I love about the Sims series (I know, talking about video games in an article about TV shows). The Sims has expansion packs with clothing options for your characters, options that are reproductions of label clothes, like H&M or Diesel. These companies pay EA to advertise their clothes in these expansions...and what does EA do? Turns around and charges the customer again to receive these expansions. Between 10 and 40 euroes is the usual price. Basically, the same as a game for me.

     

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  53.  
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    gv250, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:00am

    Who's the customer?

    Several people so far has said "Viacom is pissing off its own customers" or words to that effect.

    The viewers are not Viacom's customers. The viewers are Viacom's product. The auto, soap, insurance, and drink companies, and other advertisers are Viacom's customers. And I don't think they particularly care whether The Daily Show is available online or not.

     

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  54.  
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    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:10am

    Re:

    I won't argue that viewers are the product sold to advertisers. However, in this case the "product" can walk away and start watching elsewhere and decide to be someone else's product (or not one at all).

     

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  55.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:17am

    Re: Who's the customer?

    "The viewers are not Viacom's customers. The viewers are Viacom's product."

    Then, shouldn't Viacom be paying for its product? Every other industry does.

     

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  56.  
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    DannyB (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:17am

    Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    Channels was the slicing up of spectrum into narrow "channels".

    Google: define channels

    chan·nel/ˈCHanl/

    Noun:
    A length of water wider than a strait, joining two larger areas of water, esp. two seas.

    Verb:
    Direct toward a particular end or object: "advertisers channel money into radio".

    Synonyms:
    noun. canal - duct - groove - gutter - ditch
    verb. canalize


    The internet is different than cable or broadcast.

    On the internet all of the possible "channels" of information are not coming into my home unbidden. The bandwidth is not sliced up so that every possible server in the world has its own dedicated slot or "channel" preallocated to send bits to me.

    When I go to a website, as much of the available bandwidth as possible is used to send information to me. If I surf multiple sites at once, they compete for bandwidth.


    Maybe you mean websites are channels in the sense of thinking channels are offered on a menu. This knob turns to channels 2 through 13, providing a menu of 12 channels to select from.

     

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  57.  
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    Doug Wheeler, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:27am

    Why isn't Viacom paying DirecTV?

    It seems to me that Viacom should be paying DirecTV for their distribution services rather than the other way around. It's no different than Amazon paying UPS to deliver their goods.

     

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  58.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:27am

    I'll start feeling bad for Viacom when they stop broadcasting early/late to f*ck with my DVR.

     

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  59.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:29am

    Re:

    Keep in mind that if you dont subscribe to cable/sat then they dont really care about you. They make pennies when you watch one of their shows online, they make dollars whether a cable/sat subscriber watch their shows or not, the ones that do watch, they make even more from thanks to ad dollars.

    They stand to make a lot more money by forcing dtv to accept their terms than they lose by cutting off non subscribers from their online sevices.

     

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  60.  
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    adamj (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:32am

    Yeah Viacom is dumb. All the daily show/colbert episodes are up on hulu (or hulu plus for older episodes) and bit torrent. Go ahead, viacom. It don't make me no nevermind!
    :D
    Also, with IPV6 recently coming out it will be even harder to track down people who are downloading stuff. GG, legacy players.

     

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  61.  
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    Mason Wheeler, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:39am

    Re: Re:

    You're closer to the truth than you know. When you look at the philosophical framework used to justify this sort of stuff, particularly the writings of Ayn Rand, you find it consists of three main things:

    1) "That's mine and you can't play with it!"
    2) "You're not the boss of me!"
    3) A lot of big words and flowery prose to make it appear that the preceding "philosophy of the 5-year-old" is moral, ethical, and a good foundation for building a society on.

     

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  62.  
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    Oblate (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:46am

    Re: Who's the customer?

    Viacom's customers are the advertisers. How many commercials are being viewed when their channels are off the air? Viacom is screwed either way- if sales don't dip, the advertisers may ask why they're buying commercials on Viacom when they have no effect. If sales do dip, the advertisers are going to be upset at Viacom for lost revenue. And if sales go up, why would the advertisers ever return?

     

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  63.  
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    PRMan, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:51am

    Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    I watched Superman III with my kids (because it kept getting referenced in Office Space and my kids were feeling left out).

    Yeah, yeah, I know, but it wasn't THAT bad (except the ending). Still, it beat watching iCarly reruns for the 28000th time.

     

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  64.  
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    Kevin, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:55am

    Arguing during a broadcast

    A friend of mine who is a DirecTV subscriber told me this morning about an equally childish and petulant part of this dispute. Apparently Viacom was broadcasting a banner across the bottom of its channel on DirecTV during the Daily Show (probably its most popular show) railing against DirecTV. Worse still, DirecTV's response was to put yet another banner on top of that trying to counter what Viacom was apparently arguing.

    Imagine, two corporations arguing with each other passive-aggressively in the middle of their own broadcast in front of their own customers. After this, I wonder if DirecTV will ever push Viacom on the swingset again.

     

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  65.  
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    mattarse (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:57am

    Re: Re:

    Well that's good to know, I thought they had finally won against the pirates and that was why I couldn't find them on torrent sites lately.

     

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  66.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:58am

    Re: Re:

    Life leaps and makes the interception! He's heading for the endzone!

    Death breaks left, and lights a cigarette. Now he sticks out his arm and... OMG he's thrown a clothesline. Life's is down! The ball comes out!

     

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  67.  
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    Davey, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 9:59am

    Re:

    B..b..but it must be sane. It's the "wisdom of the market", which we all know is infallible.

     

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  68.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:06am

    Re: Re:

    "this seems as a mostly meaningless pull at the moment, as both shows are currently on a break and no new episodes are currently being created."

    You can't pull up any recent episodes either, so it is relevant.

     

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  69.  
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    medlaw, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:08am

    watching Daily Show online

    It's nice of Jon to allow us to watch his show online during the Direct TV standoff but I was forced to watch an advertisement / rant against Direct TV that encouraged me to call Direct TV to vent my outrage over their decision to drop 20+ channels.

     

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  70.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:10am

    Re: Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan, and Daniel Craig play James Bond.

    Sean Connery IS James Bond!
    'Nuff Said!

     

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  71.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:12am

    Re: Provide the actual numbers!

    Several media outlets have reported the number to have been $2.25 to $2.50 per sub.

     

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  72.  
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    DOlz, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:15am

    Just plain contempt

    Viacom views its' customers as passive mindless cattle. I made the mistake of sending "The Daily Show" a couple of suggestions for Mr Stewart to interview once (Cenk Uygar & Mike Masnick). I had hoped for an automated response acknowledging my email, what I got instead was being added to EVERY email list they had and they will not take me off. Turds.

     

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  73.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:15am

    Re: Provide the actual numbers!

    DirecTV was willing to continue carrying Viacom content until the matter was settled.
    Viacom then pulled the plug on BOTH DirecTV AND their own web feeds.

     

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  74.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:18am

    Re: Arguing during a broadcast

    Its not exactly uncommon in these disputes, though its getting worse.


    What's more disgusting is viacom using children to get their parents to put pressure on DTV to settle.

     

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  75.  
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    Ian, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:20am

    Re:

    "Quick question: How is this to spite DirecTV? Wouldn't this be spiting Viacom since they are the cause of the problem in the first place for wanting an extra $1billion from DirecTV's customers?"


    It's in spite to DTV because DTV told it's customers they can still go on their missing channels web site and watch their shows they are missing.

    In response viacom removed some popular shows.

     

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  76.  
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    Almost Anonymous (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:24am

    Re: Arguing during a broadcast

    It was better than that on Comedy Central Tuesday night during Tosh.0: there were THREE banners (1 from Viacom, 2 from DirecTV), all bitching and calling each other liars and telling the viewer to call 800-blahblah to complain. If it wasn't taking up so much screen real-estate it would have been hilarious; as it was though, it was just incredibly annoying.

     

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  77.  
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    Ezekial, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:26am

    Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    The problem is too many people like you are satisfied with low quality web based streaming video. Most people dont have a connection with enough bandwith to stream 1080P HD content with a minimum sound quality of Dolby Digital. This pisses me off so much because todays generation doesnt care about quality, they just want it now which is why sadly in the future we will be forced to suffer with compressed MP3s and shitty 720p AVI video instead of quality Blue Ray discs and Vinyl records/CDs

     

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  78.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:26am

    Re: Re:

    If you are letting anger effect your contract negotiations you are doing it wrong.

     

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  79.  
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    Tunnen (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:27am

    Re:

    You can watch the episodes of the Colbert Report and the Daily Show online in Canada. You just need to go the Comedy Network site, rather then the Comedy Central site.

     

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  80.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:28am

    Re: Why aren't Colbert and John Steward looking to move

    Colbert and Stewart can't do much I am sure. But the advertisers who paid for the internet spots and the 20 million dish subs they are not getting ads in front of are probably getting a little pissed.

     

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  81.  
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    rebrad (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:28am

    Bye Bye Viacom

    I hope DirecTV tells Viacom to take a walk. There is very little content that I would miss that can't be found elsewhere. Just cut my DirecTV bill and I'll like it even better.

     

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  82.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:32am

    Re: Re:

    They stand to make a lot more money by forcing dtv to accept their terms than they lose by cutting off non subscribers from their online sevices

    I actually do believe that is what Viacom is thinking. Moreover I think this would have been reasonable logic up to the late 1990s. What they may be missing now, however, is that distribution channels are no longer exclusive (or even protected by local monopoly rents), nor is their content. They may get past one maybe two more rounds of strong-arm pricing, but their future is bleak down that road further on.

    In other words the logic you describe made perfect since before consumers had alternatives for both distribution and content.

    I know this is a real taboo in today's paradigm... but companies really should start taking a long view on viability and profits.

     

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  83.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:35am

    Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    " sadly in the future we will be forced to suffer with compressed MP3s and shitty 720p AVI video instead of quality Blue Ray discs and Vinyl records/CDs"

    No we won't. People said the same shit when CDs came out. Some people care and some people do not. But we still have Blue-rays and FLAC files. With the ability to pass everything around digitally there is no reason people who care can not get the high quality version and people who don't can steam the shitty version.

    In 40 years elitests like you will still have pure high quality videos/music to enjoy while you call everyone who downloads the compressed version a peasant. Just like the vinyl snobs did to the cds purchasers 20 years ago.

    If I can to watch something in high quality I will download the extra 7gbs of content or get a blue ray. But if I just want to stream some comedy movie I really don't care if its not "TRUE HD"

     

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  84.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:39am

    Re: Re: Who's the customer?

    Well a 5th of the USA's cable subs can not watch Viacom's channels so if I was paying them for advertising I would want a 5th of my money back.

     

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  85.  
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    The Groove Tiger (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:45am

    Re: Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    Could have been worse, it could have been Superman IV: Now with super-Chinese-Wall-repair-vision!

     

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  86.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:45am

    When in contract dispute for more money, ESPN loves to get on the local radio with ads saying where you can 'get your fix' on sports while they while away the days trying to come to agreement on price.

    For me? Don't care. Cut the cord around a decade ago. Don't see PPV nor even public tv. Don't own a tv anymore. Don't want one. Tired of all the commercials and ads.

    I hope Viacom sticks to it's guns for the next decade. One less is a blessing.

     

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  87.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:45am

    The whole idea of splitting a cable up into channels is a technological artifact from the previous millennium.

    Self: Bite my tongue, don't even bring up that bastard word "broadband". Its just... not ... worth it... and it misses the entire context of his post.

     

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  88.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:46am

    Re: Who's the customer?

    "The viewers are Viacom's product."

    One way of looking at it to be sure. But, they piss the public off enough that they go elsewhere and/or just pirate instead of paying their subscription fees? Viacom no longer have any "product" to sell...

    "And I don't think they particularly care whether The Daily Show is available online or not."

    The "product" do care, and they're running out of reasons to stick with traditional broadcasters...

     

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  89.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Fair enough guys, when I wrote that I was thinking "entertainment industry" rather than "broadcasters" but it's a valid point...

     

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  90.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:48am

    Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    You're wrong. Yeah people said the same thing when CDs came out and now less than 1% of new music is available on Vinyl. You make it sound like you can still get anything on Vinyl. It wont be long before people stop buying Blu Rays since hundreds of millions of people are finding Hulu and Netflix and are satisfied with the crappy video and audio quality that they provide. In about 10 years only the biggest of blockbusters will probably be available on Blue Ray and everything else will be consumed through some crappy streaming video product like a Roku

     

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  91.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:50am

    Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    The vast majority of people value convenience and accessibility over and above pure audio/video quality. There's money to be made from selling high quality goods, but most people don't care...

     

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  92.  
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    Vog (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:50am

    Re: Re:

    Amazing. Knocked it outta the park.

     

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  93.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:55am

    Re: Re: Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    Fun fact: I bought the Blu Ray box set of all the Superman films earlier this year (including the 3rd & 4th...). That means I've now spent more money on that than I ever have on anything Stewart & Colbert have made for Viacom... I also own a box set of all the official 007 films despite having originally watched them all for free on TV. Interesting, given the usual arguments round here.

     

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  94.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:02am

    meanwhile, in Bizarro World, goatee-Viacom is telling goatee-cable company:

    "You're really just not profitable enough for us, considering our internet options. If you can't sweeten the pot for us, we'll cut you out of the loop and focus on streaming services like hulu, netflix, and our own websites, where we can get per-view, relevant advertising and you get nothing."

     

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  95.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:04am

    Is pressuring direct TV into paying more worth pissing off all the people who view online?

     

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  96.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:08am

    Re:

    Entertainment cares a lot about their customers! Their customers are stores and the users are just something the stores have to think about. Changing the transparency before the stores in this game is like taking off the clothes for the industry. Now they have to find a new way of dressing up and that wont go well with the conservative owners!

     

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  97.  
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    Watchit (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:08am

    Re: Re: Why aren't Colbert and John Steward looking to move

    ouch sounds painful :[

     

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  98.  
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    Watchit (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:10am

    Re:

    haha, first Spiral Knights Profile pic I've seen outside of their forums, awesome :D

     

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  99.  
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    DannyB (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:18am

    Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    Yep, I'm satisfied. It's a trade off.

    If I can watch it when I want, pause it, resume it tomorrow -- from a different device, wherever I am and have time to watch, then yes -- I'll compromise on your notion of ultimate quality.

    If I doesn't fit my lifestyle then I won't watch it at all. Period.

     

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  100.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:19am

    My question is all of this is, "Does it effect the Daily Show Interviews?".

    For those that don't know, Stewart often does extended interviews when his guest is an actual expert in some field and tosses the whole thing, unedited, on the web. It's actually my favorite thing about the Daily Show. Instead of just fitting time constraints for the TV broadcast, sometimes you get conversations on topics that are longer than the TV show itself.

     

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  101.  
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    TtfnJohn (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:25am

    Gee, does this mean I can access the Daily Show "by other means" free of the idiotic geographical blocks on it?

    Nahhh, probably not. But I'll rewrite some Captain Highliner ads like the one where a disreputable character asks "Arrrrgggg, Billy, has ya eva bin to sea?" just in case. :-)

     

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  102.  
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    Steve, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:25am

    Re: Re:

    true.. but.. oh yeah. that's the same companies...

    We're getting to a critical mass of broadband savvy users, and people who just happened to by Rokus for Netflix, that someone like John Stewart could just go only to Broadband and start the inevitable demise of companies like viacom whos business model is to stand in between the Intellectual Property creator and consumer..

     

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  103.  
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    Melissa, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:29am

    Hulu dot com

    Watching at hulu dot com right now. IN UR FACE VIACOM!!!

     

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  104.  
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    Steve, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:31am

    Re: Re:

    Not infallible, but still better than regulation.. AND, actually, what you're seeing here is the result of a market which has been so twisted by industry regulations written by industry lobbiests that it can hardly be called an open market.. It is also unique, in that they're USED TO having a monopoly on the transport medium to get the content to you, but now that the MARKET has given so many options (OTA, Cable, Satellite, 3G/4G data, Cable or DSL Internet, etc), the industry is finding out that their thuggy methods aren't so useful anymore.. Soon the market will FORCE them to play nice with the consumer..

     

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  105.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:32am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    Why would I need to get new music on vinyl when I can get it on FLAC? You know you can get high quality music without buying the outdated physical disc.

    How you consume it will always be your choice. They are not going to start filming shit with 240i cameras because people stream. You can download and pay for the high quality just like you can now.

    Just cause things need to be compressed to stream doesn't mean people are deleting the high quality original copy after they compress it.

     

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  106.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:34am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    Exactly but the audiophiles and videophiles can still find get their high quality versions and call everyone else a peon, it is just not the default.

    I don't know what this guys deal is anyway. The blue-ray is a relatively new tech, if that type of physical media fails its not like no one will ever make an HD digital copy.

    Maybe he forgets his only option was VHS 30 years ago.

     

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  107.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:36am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    "10 years only the biggest of blockbusters will probably be available on Blue Ray"

    Right everything else will be on whatever replaces blue-ray or available for high quality digital download. You can watch high quality its just not the common option because most people don't care and don't want to wait for a 7gb download of what they could just be watching already. It doesn't mean the option to download is going to disappear.

     

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  108.  
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    Ezekial, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 11:55am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    Maybe its because nobody has an internet connection fast enough to stream Blue Ray quality video with HD master audio sound. And soon 4K video. Therefor you WONT be able to get it digitally unless they allow you to purchase a single file that you can download on your own time to watch later.

     

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  109.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 12:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    Because internet speeds won't ever improve and the ability to purchase a HD copy of a movie is completely unheard of.

     

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  110.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 12:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    *digital HD copy

     

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  111.  
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    Hypnosis Blogger, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 12:02pm

    GREAT IDEA!

    In a completely unrelated story, traffic to torrent sites and searches for video sites rose ...

     

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  112.  
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    S7, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 12:27pm

    AMC / DISH

     

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  113.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 12:40pm

    heh. I just tried to post a comment on Viacom's blog asking for someone to explain how shutting down their distribution alternatives puts pressure on the distributor they're feuding with ...and their website broke.

     

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  114.  
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    Grae (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 12:47pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    Or maybe, just maybe, the demand for HD content will push ISPs to improve their network and technology and the demand for better internet connections will push content providers to make improve their HD content and make more of it available.

    Not to mention that there are people and organizations outside of the ISP and content industries which are making improvements all the time on the very technology that those two industries use, which acts as an outside force to push the average standard higher.

    I fully expect that when--not if--the legislative shackles are unbound from intellectual monopolies and technology that it will advance for the sake of nothing more than progress itself, and the average consumer will reap the benefits of that work.

     

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  115.  
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    Dark Helmet (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 12:59pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Death breaks left, and lights a cigarette. Now he sticks out his arm and... OMG he's thrown a clothesline. Life's is down! The ball comes out!"

    Life recovers the fumble on a bounce. Oh my lord, he's heading left, now right, and a spin move! He's making for the end zone folks! Death is giving chase. He...could...go..all...the...

    --We're sorry, the conclusion of this game has been blacked out by Viacom to better serve you, the viewer. You're welcome, fuckers.--

     

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  116.  
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    big root, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 1:03pm

    directv sucks and rates will rise with or without viacom

    Directv raised my rates 5 months ago without telling me and I have to suck it up and take it. So now Viacom wants to raise their rates. They should be forced to suck it up and take it too.

    People are all outraged and upset with viacom. If directv is already raping, why shouldnt viacom get their peice of the pie. Dont get me wrong, I am not for viacom. I am just against directv getting off the hook and putting all the blame on viacom.

    Who forced them to raise my rates in march? And stupid people beleive all the propaganda. Also, why should viacom be forced to give away their product to directv customers for free when directv is charging an arm and a leg for it. They were directing all their customers to viacoms online site to get the programming while they worked it out. Meanwhile I am still being charged full price for less product. To mean it seams directv is the only one who wins. My kid wants nik jr!

     

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  117.  
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    Tami, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 1:10pm

    Agree 100%

    Couldn't have said it better. Agree 100% with this also...

     

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  118.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 1:38pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    as opposed to the writings of Mao which boiled down to do what i say or i kill you?

    Good to know that stupidity is still alive...

     

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  119.  
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    mikey4001, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 1:39pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Cue theme song to "Heidi."

     

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  120.  
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    ...., Jul 12th, 2012 @ 1:43pm

    the sad thing is fox news is still on...

     

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  121.  
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    jennifer, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 1:48pm

    Re: Disagree 100%

    YOU ARE CRAZY YOU KNOW PEOPLE WATCH NICK

     

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  122.  
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    kaylyn, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 1:57pm

    Re: Disagree 100%

    You know people watch NICKELODEON right? god why do you want to do this to people? what are you MONSTERS? i think everyone that agrees with Viacom is a monster gosh!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I HOPE DIRECTV WINS. COME ON AMERICA WE CAN WIN BACK NICKELODEON GO AMERICA! :)

     

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  123.  
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    Matthew, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 2:05pm

    disagree

    my daughter watches Nickelodeon and if you tack this away from America I will come to your fucken come to your company and kick your ass!

     

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  124.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 2:33pm

    Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    "My point is this. The best thing you can do while the world is changing around you is to put your head in the sand, put your fingers in your ears, sing La la la la la, and try to get new laws passed."

    Sadly there are so many people who do just that. I go with the times myself. At one point it was awesome for me to have dtv then I bought a FTA box. That was pretty nice for me for a good while but as my internet now has the bandwidth to stream instantly that is my new norm.

    A gigabyte for me today is around 150 seconds "at places that allow enough connections to pull the max or a torrent". Where as my net in the not too far past would have took around a bazillion hours.

    What's my point? The norm is always evolving and what seems so awesome today is just gonna be old news tomorrow. Cable TV is going to come to a end very soon. It's the only logical next step in the evolution of technology.

    Do we still have companies that produce millions and millions of typewriters because they're the most logical choice verses a computer? Of course not rofl! I'd use my cell phone over a typewriter just because it could probably store enough data to fill up my house if wrote down on paper.

     

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  125.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 2:37pm

    Re: Re:

    It won't be long before those pennies are all they'll get. Of course by then it might be nickles and dimes.

    The biggest problem is that the transition from computer screen to TV screen hasn't been a smooth one, despite new devices coming out all the time to make this easier. Cutting the cord increases your hassle. But eventually there will be no difference between your TV and your computer, and cable will go the way of VHS.

     

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  126.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 2:40pm

    Re:

    and you've just explained the #1 reason to watch the Daily Show online. This happens almost weekly.

     

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  127.  
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    Michael Hirsch (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 3:01pm

    Would you miss Viacom?

     

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  128.  
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    steven, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 3:13pm

    im not gonna be a pawn

    screw this crap, its all a matter of he said she said, both company's are blaming each other, and i bet there will never be an agreement. Honestly im just going to Netflix and watch what i want. They both seem to have their panties on too tight

     

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  129.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 3:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    As opposed to the behaviour and conduct of psychologically and emotionally healthy adult human beings.

    Stupidity is certainly rampant in your idiotic post.

    Randd very probably had narcisstic personality disorder and what worked for her is highly unlikely to work for psychologically and emotionally healthy humans.

     

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  130.  
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    Blardy Bligam, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 4:44pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    What I'm curious about is whether this is just a risky bluff from Viacom. As you say, these particular shows are on a break which means pulling them isn't going to hurt too much monetarily speaking, at least for the time being. But what happens if DirectTV calls their bluff?

    If I were in their shoes, I'd say, "Ok. If that's how you want to play things, fine. We just won't carry your offerings anymore. Goodbye and don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out!" Then I'd reduce the subscription price for all my DirectTV subscribers by whatever amount it was costing per user to carry Viacom's offerings. This should keep most subscribers relatively happy, plus they can always go online if they absolutely must have a particular Viacom show. Then I'd sit back and watch as Viacom has a hissy fit, then goes on to the next service provider and attempts the exact same thing with them.

    If enough providers were to simply drop Viacom altogether (which is plausible if they all decided to unite for a common cause), Viacom would quickly cease to be worth much to advertisers, who in turn will move on to greener pastures. This scenario ends with Viacom completely losing on both sides of the equation.

    Would this be enough for Viacom to go belly up I wonder? If so, it's like I said at the beginning; it's risky bluff. Especially when one realizes Viacom doesn't have a monopoly on stupid, emotionally driven decision making. There's no telling what DirectTV and those like them might do when pushed far enough by Viacom. I guess part/most of it would come down to an analysis of which would be least damaging to profits; paying insanely huge fees to Viacom or ditch them and hope you don't lose too many subscribers over it (who may go to your competitor, or just as likely cut the cable for good). It will be interesting to see what happens next.

     

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  131.  
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    Wally (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 5:26pm

    Cost.

    Has anyone considered that this shit is exactly why cable and satalite costs go up every year?

    The cable and satalite companies have to pay to tap Viacom's and Clear Channel II's lines. The service providers really are the victims here because each year the studios ask for more and more money. Granted there are other variables driving the costs up, but that's the biggest factor right there.

     

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  132.  
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    Wally (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 5:28pm

    Cost.

    Has anyone considered that this shit is exactly why cable and satalite costs go up every year?

    The cable and satalite companies have to pay to tap Viacom's and Clear Channel II's lines. The service providers really are the victims here because each year the studios ask for more and more money. Granted there are other variables driving the costs up, but that's the biggest factor right there.

     

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  133.  
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    Vog (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 5:57pm

    Re: disagree

    I know you feel strongly about this, but did you have to post three times using different aliases?

     

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  134.  
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    45rooot (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 6:07pm

    Re: Cost.

    That's bull shit. We are the victims. with statements like that, I see why. dumb ass customers.... feeling sorry for the very company that's screwing you.... Greedy ass corporations on both sides but I am glad to see the PR department earning their money. They have stupid people believing the companies are victims. I would laugh if it wasn't so sad and stupid.

     

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  135.  
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    block it, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:48pm

    block it

    block whatever you want... you're just reaffirming what has been known for a long time now.. "legal alternatives" are a joke and should be treated as such

     

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  136.  
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    Roger D. Settle, Jul 12th, 2012 @ 8:58pm

    Directv & Viacom

    I think both Viacom and Directv share the blame for this. Viacom says Directv pulled the channels and Directv say they were forced to remove the channels. I don't know who is telling the truth in this matter but I do know that Viacom does not care for the people that watched their shows. If they cared they would not have removed their shows online. If I couldn't watch the show on Directv I could at least watch some of them online but now Viacom has removed that option also. That makes me think that all Viacom cares about is money. In case Viacom doesn't know without people watching their shows they will soon be left with nothing. To try and use little children in this fight is shameful.

     

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  137.  
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    Wally (profile), Jul 12th, 2012 @ 10:26pm

    Re: Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    Wow, back in my day I had Hey Dude, Salute Your Shorts, Are You Afraid of the Dark, Rhen And Stimpy, Hey Arnold, Doug, Rugrats, Rocko's Modern Life, Ah! Real Monsters, Kblam, Legends of The Hidden Tenple, What Would You Do, Wild and Crazy Kids, Count Duckula, Double Dare, Family Double Dare, Spongebob Squarepants, Invader Zim.....the list goes on.

    Point is If I had lost those shows back in the day because of a broadcaster blackout, I would have flipped my lid. I agree that iCarly is no loss. I feel pity for the kids 3 generations behind 30 years old for missing all that great pre-Viacom programming.

     

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  138.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 13th, 2012 @ 1:50am

    Re: Provide the actual numbers!

    There are a couple of reasons nobody's being very specific about the dollars involved. But taken together, I believe they've each given us enough pieces to get pretty close to the real numbers...

    Viacom's logic: We only want an extra "couple of pennies a day" per subscriber. So that's nothing, right? Wrong!

    First, why do they say "a couple of pennies"? Is that literally 2? If so, why not say 2? It's probably more than 2, but I'll give them the benefit of the doubt in these calculations:

    2 cents/day times 30 days/month times 84 months (the previous contract was in place for 7 years), times 20 million DirecTV customers. What does that add up to? $1,008,000,000

    Yep, there's the $1 BILLION extra that DirecTV says Viacom is demanding.

    DirecTV says Viacom is asking for a 30% increase, so that $1 BILLION is ON TOP of what DirecTV is paying now.

    Viacom says they're asking for an increase of "a couple of pennies a day per subscriber" but won't tell us what we're currently paying (even if you ask them - they say that DirecTV sets the price), so here's some math (again giving Viacom the benefit of the doubt and using 2 pennies/day):

    Let y = the current daily bill rate
    30% * y = 0.02
    y = 0.02 / 0.30
    y = 0.06666666

    So DirecTV is currently paying about $2/month (per subscriber) for Viacom's lame channels. Now, they probably mark that up when they bill you, because they want to make a profit, so you can probably figure that the portion of your bill that gives you the Viacom channels in your package is about $2.30 - $2.60/month, assuming a 15% - 30% markup (15 is what I would consider the low end, and 30 the high end, but I believe most service industries run in that profit range).

    So, I guess you have to ask yourself, what are the Viacom channels worth to you? If you're currently paying about $2.50/month, are you willing to pay $3.25/month? Of course, Viacom maintains that DirecTV shouldn't pass along the price increase to its customers. Huh? Then why does Viacom feel it should pass on a price increase to DirecTV? Buit I digress...

    Now DirecTV's stance is that if Viacom thinks its networks are so valuable, they should be willing to sell them the way movie channels are sold - a la carte. You pay for only the channels you're interested in watching. You want MTV? That'll be $0.50/month. BET? $0.60/month. Nickelodeon? $0.95/month. TVLand? $0.30/month. Comedy Central? $0.80/month. Those are sample prices, and not based on any real expectation of actual costs, but you get the idea. Of course, all DirecTV is really doing with that argument is calling Viacom's bluff on their perceived network value. Viacom would never agree to a la carte pricing, because they know that there's no way they'd be able to sell all their channels to every subscriber. That's why Viacom is insisting on keeping everything bundled into an all-or-nothing agreement. Which ultimately means we all end up paying for channels we'll never watch, but because we're all sharing the cost, the price per channel ends up being mnore reasonable.

    Hope that helps.

     

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  139.  
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    techflaws (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 2:01am

    Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    720p AVI video instead of quality Blue Ray discs and Vinyl records/CDs

    Apart from the fact that you CAN'T see a difference between 1080p and 720p on a 40" TV, where are your studies proving LAME encoded mp3s with are distinguishable from CD quality?

     

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  140.  
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    techflaws (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 2:02am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: And they wonder why people are cutting the Cable cord

    everything else will be consumed through some crappy streaming video product like a Roku

    So, Roku can't stream 1080p with DTS-HD? Get a WDTV then.

     

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  141.  
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    JB in TUC, Jul 13th, 2012 @ 2:59am

    Viacom withholds the Daily Show from streaming.

    The Daily Show is rubbish, propaganda passed off as fiction. We get enough of that from the news on ABC, NBC, CBS. Less people watching it has increased the national IQ by 30%. Viacom, maybe you can just remove yourself from everything?

     

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  142.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 13th, 2012 @ 4:22am

    Re: Re: Cost.

    First off, Direct TV provided a whole skew of Premium channels for compensation to their customers. Then you have the phrase "Really are the victims" not "Ate the real victims". Given the situation between the two not counting the consumer level, DirectvTV refused to pay its assigned extortion fees and so Viacom is having a child's fit over it. Direct TV's response is like a child's response to a bully.

     

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  143.  
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    Anonymous Coward With A Unique Writing Style, Jul 13th, 2012 @ 5:04am

    Re: Re: Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    You know Wally, in some articles we don't see eye to eye, but in this one we most assuredly do.

    And might I add "wtf dude?!" You just made me feel semi-old and I'm not even old! Lol. All those shows you mentioned are exactly the same ones I watched back in my day when they were first coming out. Good times.

    Although I will say, I've watched iCarly on occasion. My younger relatives like it and my buddy's niece and nephew love it, which it always happens to be on whenever we're getting ready to go tear up the town. So we watch it with them before we head out. It's not bad, but it sure isn't no "Ahhh! Real Monsters" or any of the other stuff we had back in the day. Which just gave me an idea, I still have some of that stuff recorded on VHS tapes (gasp!), just might have to dig up one of my old VCRs and play it for all these kids I'm around. Bet they'll get a kick out of it.

     

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  144.  
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    Niall (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 5:37am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Depends a lot how many DirecTV customers decide to 'cut the cord' if they don't have Viacom channels. Could be risky for them as well. It also depends on how big a viewer base they have from Viacom's point of view - I can't say, I'm not familiar enough with the intricacies of the US market.

     

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  145.  
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    Niall (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 5:40am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Both are stupid. Only right-wing libertarian Rand-worshippers deal in absolutes :)

    Good to know you're too stupid to come up with your own, better argument.

     

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  146.  
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    Niall (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 5:43am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Fantastic, especially if you can 'hear' it in t'proper Yorkshire!

     

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  147.  
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    Niall (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 5:49am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Aye, let's have no market regulation, so only the strong rule. Riiiight.

    The 'free' market can only be free (of regulation) the way that 'free' men can be free (of laws). There have to be some to keep a certain level of sanity and fairness. Too much regulation (especially of the wrong type) can stifle business, but too little can lead to anarchy and monopolistic abuses.

     

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  148.  
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    Niall (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 5:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I also like the last verse, which neatly highlights the attitude of many of the content controllers:

    Three ha'pence a foot it'll cost you
    And as for me Sam says don't fret,
    'Skys took a turn since this morning
    I think it'll brighten up yet.

     

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  149.  
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    Niall (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 5:56am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    That's all stuff that was way after my time, so how do you think *I* feel? :)

     

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  150.  
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    Niall (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 5:58am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Arghhhhh, now I can't get that out of my head, you rotter!

     

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  151.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 13th, 2012 @ 6:03am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Except you can't see the one you want, just the rerun they want to show.....

    I swear....stop eating your hat.

     

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  152.  
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    Niall (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 6:11am

    Re: Viacom withholds the Daily Show from streaming.

    That's ok, you can go back to watching Faux 'News' and the other many far-right media sources that show the lie to the 'liberal media' accusations!

     

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  153.  
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    KGoetowski, Jul 13th, 2012 @ 7:06am

    Americans resond to bad corporate practices with boycotts

    And now I understand why John K. left the Ren & Stimpy show after the first season. I'm sure the South Park guys would have a thing or two to say about this, but 'Oh no!', that's a Comedy Central show. Viacom is taking a serious gamble with any revenue they might have received from their channels' lineups. P*ssing off the whole of the DirecTV community is going to turn most of us off to any notion of purchasing merchandise related to Nickelodeon or MTV or Comedy Central. That extra billion Dollars they wanted? They've practically lost more than that now on what might have been potential sales of Spongebob and Big Time Rush and Beavis & Butthead crap.

    P.S.
    Thanks, DirecTV, for the extra premium channels while this is going on.

     

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  154.  
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    99%, Jul 13th, 2012 @ 7:09am

    dissatisfied with all tv

    This do nothing congress; needs to get involved to protect us from this sort of harassment. Why cant we get what we pay for and pay for what we get I'm so tired of paying for stuff i have seen for the last 50 years. over and over i love Lucy and matlock how many times do we pay for watching 1 show 500 times?.

     

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  155.  
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    Tunnen (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 9:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    And now I got "Paradise by the Dashboard Light" by Meatloaf in my head.

    Which is sort of funny in a way, since they are sort of similar. You got someone withholding services until the other makes a commitment. When they final break down and commit, they realize the mistake they made and are now wishing it would just be all over. =P

     

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  156.  
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    Wikiman, Jul 13th, 2012 @ 12:43pm

    Re: Artifactivity

    Philippe Dauman would be the grump. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philippe_Dauman

     

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  157.  
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    Phillip (profile), Jul 13th, 2012 @ 12:50pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    it's a daily news show who cares about old content, they still have clips up which would be about all i care about and they still have episodes on hulu, so still a non-issue

     

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  158.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 14th, 2012 @ 2:02am

    Re:

    Happened to me several times. But it doesn't matter. They monitor posts - or should I say censor? If your post doesn't support their position, it doesn't make it to the discussion, even if its measured and reasoned. Although I think I did see one slip through.

     

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  159.  
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    Me, Jul 14th, 2012 @ 2:56am

    I think I'll go pirate these shows now, just because I refuse to be a pawn in their scheme.

    Or they could put them back up online and I'd gladly watch the commercials so that they can get paid.

     

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  160.  
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    Dan, Jul 14th, 2012 @ 7:06am

    Re: Re: Provide the actual numbers!

    Found this
    here:
    http://news.discovery.com/tech/viacom-directtvs-spat-120714.html

    Christina Ortiz blogs: "In case you haven’t noticed, Viacom and DirectTV have been trading blows over carriage fees, the amount of money DirectTV pays Viacom to air channels. Recently Viacom, who owns MTV, Comedy Central, Nickolodeon and 23 other channels, raised their fees by 30 percent, which amounts to $7.30 in additional fees annually per subscriber, or about $144 million a year for the 20 million or so of DirectTV’s users. DirectTV thought the fees were too much and as of Tuesday at 11:50 pm, they shut off all 26 Viacom channels, leaving only an alternate channel with a loop apology from DirectTV CEO Mike White."

    So where is the BILLION DOLLARS Direct TV?
    $7.30 per subscriber ANNUALLY?
    Who cares? This is a minor amount in my total Direct TV bill, and indeed an even lesser amount in my total telecommunication cost (cell, broadband, TV).

    There are NO winners in this silly fight involving a bunch of petulant children. Yeah it is all about customers. Sure it is.

     

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  161.  
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    45rooot (profile), Jul 14th, 2012 @ 9:08am

    Re: Re: Re: Cost.

    whole skew of premium channels? where? They provided encore channels which they give away with choice ultimate. why not give us something we can use like discounts or prorated pricing. Viacom is doing to directv the same thing directv does to its customers.

     

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  162.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 16th, 2012 @ 10:51am

    Re: Directv & Viacom

    "Viacom says Directv pulled the channels and Directv say they were forced to remove the channels.
    I don't know who is telling the truth in this matter but I do know that Viacom does not care for the people that watched their shows."

    Technically, BOTH are right!
    DirecTV DID pull the feeds...but it was because they were forced to do so by Viacom or face charges of pirating the signal since DirecTV technically doesn't have the right to transmit without a contract in place!

    Don't ya just love irony?

     

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  163.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 16th, 2012 @ 10:54am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Cost.

    "Viacom is doing to directv the same thing directv does to its customers."

    Viacom cut off its Internet programming, and prevented DirecTV from carrying Viacom programming or face charges of "pirating" their signal since there's no contract at the moment.

    DirecTV did...what exactly?

     

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  164.  
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    anonymous, Jul 16th, 2012 @ 8:12pm

    Re:

    But without viewers they have no product to sell.

     

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  165.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jul 17th, 2012 @ 10:54am

    Re: I love DirecTV's counter-move.

    yes, free to the ones who do not have it but the consumers who are already paying for these encore channels are still paying so what is so great about that?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  166.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 29th, 2012 @ 11:19pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Don't worry. Be happy.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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