There’s a reason ESPN charges all that money to watch. We want to pay it.
The risk for distributors is losing subscribers who will leave to find live sports provided by a competitor. More than one-third of consumers would cancel their pay TV service if they lost ESPN, the top cable channel for viewer loyalty, according to a 2012 survey by Lazard Capital Markets.
Even in an a la carte era, that’s not going to change.
Pilson said he thinks bundling will probably become the subject of a Congressional inquiry over the next five years. The New York Times recently reported government intervention doesn’t seem likely since the Federal Communications Commission has ensured telecommunication companies can compete in the TV business and empowered programmers in negotiations with cable distributors.
“Over a period of time, I think we can expect all cable bills to go up,” Pilson said. “There seems to be a public acceptance of (higher) bills right now. I think cable is viewed as a necessity in most homes.”
When it comes to sports programming, we live in a whatever the market will bear world. And the content providers know it.