Skip to comments.Cablevision continues to see subscriber slide, blames economy Cable Networks DeathWatch™
Posted on 05/19/2011 9:19:57 AM PDT by Kevin J waldroup
The weak economy is at least partially responsible for an ongoing video subscriber slide at Cablevision Systems (NYSE: CVC), COO Tom Rutledge said during an earnings conference call, adding that the MSO is still reeling after a retransmission dispute with News Corp.'s (Nasdaq: NWSA) Fox Networks that resulted in a blackout during last year's Major League Baseball playoffs.
"Cablevision core system ... lost about 8400 video customers. Some of that was attributable to how we came into the year after the dispute that we had with News Corp. and the carriage and the World Series (but) we still continue to see softness in the economy, particularly in lower income neighborhoods," Rutledge said.
(Excerpt) Read more at fiercecable.com ...
I had a similar problem with Comcast. I told them if they did not lower my rate I was going to cancel their TV service. Surprisingly they obliged.
I pray to God the cable companies fail. I will never ever understand how they were let to monopolize their grip on cities in towns here in Assachusetts. I don’t know if it’s like that in other states but I think it is.
If it wasn’t for my son and wife I would have cancelled my tv service YEARS ago.
As The Misfits once said, Die, Die my Darling!
Bye-bye cable companies. See you in hell!
ATT UVerse is growing by leaps and bounds.
I love my cable service, Cable One. I’ve had their package of 10Mbps Internet, Cable TV and Cable Phone for a couple or three years now, and it’s actually a better picture than either DirecTV or Dish.
I just scheduled installation of their new 50Mbps upgrade, and my monthly bill will drop by about $50. The cap is 100GB per month, and I have to maintain a one year contract each year, but that’s OK with me.
The employees are fabulously friendly, helpful, and dedicated. I have no complaints, but when I do have a problem, they usually have a repairman out here the same day, or the next day at the latest.
(I’m almost salivating at the thought of having 50Mbps Internet. That’s more than 6MB/sec. When I first started using the Internet, I was lucky if I got 6KB/sec.)
There isn’t anything much worth watching. I’d much prefer to read, anyways.
They have a monopoly. They need to open cable up to competition the way they did Ma Bell.
Many people are dropping cable for satellite because of sports. Younger people and families realize that they can get all the movies they want for $7 a month with Netflix, and since they can only watch one at a time they won’t pay for cable packages. So it is not just losing subscribers to a bad economy, people are downgrading to smaller packages. The result is lower revenues to the cable companies.
It is human nature. The cable monopolies charge too much, and people figured out a way to get what they want without them as a result. It is time to end the cable monopoly.
So, that’s what became of Tom Rutledge! He was my boss when he ran our little cable company back in Austin in the early 90s. He was a good boss but he was an obvious Yankee that didn’t really fit the Texas lifestyle.
FWIW, the combination of Netflix, Hulu, 4g wireless and other internet options, as well as poor programming would be as big a reason for the downturn as the poor economy.
They were allowed to have a monopoly because in order to provide the service, 30 years ago, they had to acquire millions of miles of rights-of-way and install the cable lines, the wires. It was a huge investment that made sense AT THE TIME. But they long ago recouped their huge investments and now have bought off the government entities that are prolonging their monopoly and encouraging them to continuously raise their rates so that the government’s tax/fees can go up, too. The reason this will end is that the technology has overtaken their land lines. Where I live, you can get cable from the cable company, or from the phone company (or from Direct TV). Competition will out. I recently negotiated a $35 cut in what I pay them.
So they are losing basic subscribers in poor neighborhoods.
But gaining in higher end services and bundles.
Lord I hate paying my $200 cable bill.
Yes, we have the phone company option too but it’s not much better. I can’t do satellite because of the sheer number of oak trees that surround my house. We tried it and had no end of problems with it.
I wish my wife would just let me cancel it. If I want to watch something I can subscribe to Netflix or watch it on Hulu.
The cap is intended to prevent you from using streaming services to excess. Be careful. If you stream movies, download movies to iTunes etc, you could hit the cap and get smacked with overages. I oppose the cap. And I only wish I could get that speed! Cable is much slower in my neck of the woods and yet I live in perhaps the richest “cable district” in America (cable company I have serves Beverly Hills, Brentwood, Bel Air, Santa Monica, West Hollywood, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Venice, Malibu etc...100,000+ high income homes, yet perhaps the worst cable offerings in the country. Slow, expensive, old technology. If I had the monopoly on this cable district I would be stinking filthy rich and would still be able to provide excellent service, and I would have ran the phone company out of town, but the people who ran it were incompetent crooks (formerly Adelphia) who refused to invest in technology and the new owners are not much better)).
If they are allowed to involuntarily cap ( sounds like you volunteered to cap for a lower bill, that is fair long as you know the deal) they should be forced to deregulate the last mile and open it to competition.
Have you tried watching BBC America and the content on MHz? There is an imperative that you keep the women in your family happy. So you might as well try to find something you like.
I have Comcast. I get TV, internet and phone service (that I never use). Wife recently called them and they dropped the rate from $113 per month to $91. I’ve shopped for other services such as ATT and Comcast is the best price.
Ever since it went to no-term contracts, Verizon Fios has been kicking Cablevision’s butt in New York. Better product and better customer service. My hope is that Cablevision will soon be forced to sell the Knicks and Rangers. :)
I had to stand on line for over a half an hour to return my Cablevision equipment after I switched. Almost everyone on line was dropping off equipment, as opposed to picking it up.
When I called to cancel my service they told me it would take about 5 days to send a man out, though I had already switched to Fios. I didn’t care, until I received my final bill and found that they had the nerve to CHARGE ME for service for those days. After a lot of arguing, I got them to credit those charges.
Also, I’m sure I’m not the only one annoyed by the constant calls from Cablevision’s sleazy, obnoxious sales reps, trying to get you to come back. I have demanded they stop calling (I even kept one rep on the line asking ridiculous questions about Jim Dolan’s wig) but they won’t stop.
Originally, I thought, if the price was right, I might go back, if Fios jacked up my bill too much after my guaranteed price term ended. But after dealing with Cablevision’s horrid sales reps and customer service, I would not use them if the service was free.
I would not be surprised if Cablevision does not exist in 5 or 10 years. It is a truly horrible company. The actual product is decent, but the people and policies are vile.
I agree with all that. In this case, I’ll have an advantage:
They freeze all overage charges for the first 90 days, so I can see how much traffic I put through it for 3 months without getting any surprise extra charges.
I intend to not throttle myself at all during those 3 months, just to see what happens. If I have to adjust my usage after that, I will.
Going into it with eyes wide open.
wow, you actually reached a sentient human being at Comcast?
“Verizon Fios has been kicking Cablevisions butt in New York.”
You’re one of the lucky ones. I have Verizon Fios and they have the worst customer service on the planet.
I always get a laugh when they ask if I want phone service from them. I want to be snarky and tell them "what am I call you from?" or something like that but I usually end up politely declining.
The deal I mentioned is good for a year. I hope by the time that is up I can finally get an antenna on my roof and drop their TV service altogether.
Also, I typically use about 8GB per month, never more than 10GB per month.
I’ll monitor my use with the upgraded service and if it varies significantly from that, I’ll be making some usage changes, for sure.
Their throttling plan with my current service is based on using more than 5GB per day for more than half the days in a billing cycle. For a while, they automatically cut your bandwidth in half if you used more than a certain amount during daytime hours. As far as I can see from their TOU, they’ve dropped that restriction, I think.
Not only did I reach one, but she was so nice and sweet when she lowered my rate that my blood, which had been boiling since I saw the recently hiked bill, stopped doing that.
I downgraded my Comcast cable last month, to where I am now only receiving local networks through them. With Netflix Streaming and Hulu Plus, I’m not missing cable channels at all. I’m also not missing the high fees of digital cable- it was mighty nice to open my cable bill this month and see that it had dropped from an average of $150/month to $20/month.
They can "afford" the $ 150/month but since it's their money, why not shop and save it?
I do not now where you are at, but CableOne service here in Roswell New Mexico sucks and customer service is worthless. After 22 years I just dropped there service here last month, sixty bucks for basic cable is a rip off as far as I am concerned.
I am now getting local channels over the air with an inside antenna. Picture quality is much better, but selection is very limited. I do miss Fox News, A&E and The History channels, but not enough to justify there price.
Cablevision 300 channels and 290 are the same and any time after midnight 295 are paid programing pimping.
It’s ironic that with hundreds of channels, there’s not much worth watching out there, or much on the air that you can’t find elsewhere.
With Netflix, Hulu TV, and other internet channels growing, why do you need cable or satellite to find what you want?
So many channels have inane reality shows anymore. Are those really worth watching?
And I swear that every “comedian” on Comedy Central tells many penis jokes mixed with vagina jokes. Or, are pushing liberal causes such as homosexual marriage and global warming. For this filth, we need to pay them to bring cable into our homes?
I think the three-way bundles from the likes of Verizon and AT&T (Broadband Internet, Phone, & TV) are cutting into traditional “cable” outfits.
I think that many customers are more inclined to trust their phone company to keep the phone service good, than they are to think the cable outfit can do the TV part better.
The experiences of three neighbors of mine was that they were unhappy with the three-way bundles from the cable-TV outfit, and took either their phone or their phone and broadband service back to the phone company (Verizon).
That has NOT encouraged me to try a three-way bundle with the local cable-TV outfit; instead my broadband Internet and Phone bundle (FIOS) remains with the phone company; and I am considering adding the TV to that setup.
Cablevision screwed themselves in the long term when they shut down their HD media production company, that was a truly value added addition that was unique to their service.
Verizon has been pushing out FiOS as fat as possible and is providing pretty good service.
Cablevision customer service is down island... manana, manana.
I’m in Hollywood and it is fast for ATT, but their residential connections are ‘slow”. I have to download Game of Thrones from work instead of my home. That bad.
I cancelled cable becasue the programming simply sucks - with half of all shows being some form of reality TV.
I didn’t cancel due to price. I cancelled due to value. I got poor value for the price, as most shows were simply unwatchable to me.
Create great shows. Try shows with less homos. That’s a start. Try shows where Dad is wise and teaches his kids, instead of being an unsuccessful lout. Try shows with nuclear families intact. Try shows that trumpet patriotism. Try shows that show people being rewarded for responsible behavior and punished for behaving irresponsibly.
That would be a start.
TV programming simply sucks. It was a bad value. I wasn’t going to continue paying $70/mo. for some football and baseball and the random interesting new movie instead of the horrific repeats shown endlessly over and over.
TV programming sucks. Get a clue TV people. Make decent shows and I’ll come back. There is a reason I have been watching reruns of Moonlighting on Netflix.
Comcast is way too expensive. I am considering cutting my TV portion. It just isn’t that good.
Speaking of TV, are there any national news broadcasts anymore?
In its early years, CNN used to broadcast news continually. Now, every cable news channel has one hour of news programming a day, followed by 10 hours of talking heads reapeated twice a day.
THIS IS NEWS??? Give me a break.
If I want talk shows, I’ll listen to radio. I want news. I can’t get “news” on TV. That is why I get my news almost exclusively from the internet, with Free Republic being my #1 source for news.