Broadcasting and Cable reports that at the FCC DTV transition meeting Wednesday, the cable industry was criticized for their dubious promotional strategies during the transition:
The criticism came from Joel Kelsey, policy analyst for Consumers Union, who told the FCC his group was concerned that cable operators were trying to use the transition to up-sell their service, promising low-cost basic as a way to gain customers, then trying to sell them more expensive service rather than clearly laying out their options.
I am shocked SHOCKED at this, aren't you?
But it appears that nothing will come of this. National Cable Television Association chairman Kyle McSlarrow seemed to dismiss the accusation saying that he thought the charges were "a little bit of theater" by special interest groups.
I know of at least one instance in Austin, where Time Warner Cable moved one of the PBS channels to the cable company's "digital tier" and forced people who wanted to see the public TV channel to subscribe to the digital cable service and lease a set-top box from them.
Seriously, if anyone is actually surprised that cable companies are milking every last cent from its viewers, you have been living in a bubble with your fingers in your ears. Plain and simple, this is gouging in the case of something like a public broadcasting service - something that is provided free to the public - it should be against the law.
Let me know what you think about this. Is this extortion, or just creative marketing?