In a short two years cable operators will owe about $1.3 billion in retansmission fees. Our friend Jon Lafayette, who now writes for B&C, asks, "Who will foot the bill?"
Lafayette writes, "Will these retrans dollars…come out of distributor profits? Will cable networks take cuts or smaller increases in their monthly subscriber fees? Will customers pay through the nose with skyrocketing cable bills? Or will spiraling programming costs lead to a change in the way cable channels are bundled and sold to subscribers, as distributors brace for new video challenges from Apple, Google and Amazon?"
The article’s concluding thought: "Each of the options being tossed back and forth may turn out to be part—or all of—the answer to the retrans dilemma. But no matter what shakes out, one thing is for certain: The bill is coming due, and soon."