Posted by: crudbasher | September 29, 2011

Implications of Cable Companies Unbundling Channels

(cc) h.koppdelaney

 

I believe that technology is going to change the nature of education as irresistibly as a massive storm. Many people can see that storm coming and I have been trying to figure out what form it will take and what is likely to happen. My current theory has it happening in three phases.

1. Disaggregation. – Our society and relationships are structured on a physically based model. The Internet is changing that to an interest based model. (see Deconstructing Disaggregation)

2. The Infinite Monkeys Phase – It is said that given an infinite amount of monkey with typewriters, statistically one of them will recreate a work of Shakespeare. The Internet is allowing a vast number of creative tools to be unleashed and any one of these can have world shaping consequences. (see The Infinite Monkeys Effect)

3. Re-aggregation. Once we have torn apart the structures that our society has been based on during the Industrial age, we will be able to reassemble them into a personalized structure that fits an individuals personal needs. It will always be changing and in flux as our lives are always changing and in flux. (see Education Will Become Personalized)

If I am right, we will start to see existing structures torn apart. I was therefore really interested in seeing this story about how cable companies are thinking about unbundling their packages and letting people get just the channels they want. Well, it won’t be quite that at first but you have to remember that cable companies are not content producers, they are aggregators. The Stormfront will be quite hard on them. 🙂

As for Education, this will make it easier in the long run to get content into the classroom. Schools won’t have to buy the whole cable lineup if you only need one channel.

    • The cable industry is pulling an about-face on the issue of a la carte programming, due to increasingly expensive content rights and a weakening economy making bundles of network programming less affordable for the average consumer.
    • Cable companies have historically fought against the idea of a la carte
    • But cable companies have become stuck between a rock and a hard place: On one hand, media companies are demanding ever-higher carriage fees for their programming; on the other, consumers are being squeezed by a weak economy that threatens to make cable service unaffordable.
    • Programming costs have risen six to 10 percent a year over the last decade
    • The solution for cable companies may be to find ways to lower the cost of cable. As a result, they will likely need to offer lower-priced bundles of content, or to make some networks — like ESPN — available on an a la carte basis.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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