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. identicon
    Dan, 14 Jul 2012 @ 7:06am

    Re: Re: Provide the actual numbers!

    Found this

    Christina Ortiz blogs: "In case you havenít 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 DirectTVís 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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