AT&T’s Internet Overcharging Spells Trouble for Online Innovation

From Free Press, a media reform group:

At worst, this is a plan designed to discourage cord-cutting and pad profits; at best, this is another example of an antiquated phone-company business model being forced onto an otherwise vibrant and limitless marketplace.

Indeed. Right now, I’m watching the Al-Jazeera English live stream on my PS3. Hulu has the TV shows that I would be watching from a DVR, and Netflix has movies that would be on HBO/Showtime or on a cable company’s On Demand service. We are rapidly reaching the point technologically where purchasing TV service from AT&T or a cable company isn’t really necessary any more. And they’re scared of having to compete with the Internet for people’s entertainment.

  1. Not to sound cool or hip or anything, but I haven’t had a television since the digital conversion made my rabbit ears obsolete. For me, TV died that day. If I can’t plug my idiot box into a wall and see some good old fashioned static, then it’s just not television. It’s something else.

    Two years later I’ve got my computer hooked up to a projector and can watch just about any show I want any time of day or night with limited commercial interruptions. If stations like CBS or HBO want to survive, they’ll have to do it by making their websites into destination points. As it stands, now, their sites just offer more hurdles.

  2. That is completely correct, Chaz. The “old guard” need to learn how to compete in 2011, not try to bring us back to 1991 or earlier. Cable and IPTV need to stand on their own feet and compete on their service quality.

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