Patience appears to be growing thin in the cable space, where many insiders feel the “too-much-TV environment,” as Variety calls it, has set the stage for a kill-off of underperforming channels.
“NBCUniversal’s decision in January to shutter two of the weakest linear outlets in its channel portfolio — Esquire Network and Cloo — was a warning shot that is reverberating throughout the pay-TV jungle,” Variety reports. “The thinning of the cable-channel herd has begun.”
The report quotes Coleman Breland, distribution president for Turner Broadcasting, saying: “I think, over time, you’re going to have more and more linear networks go by the wayside. I think that’s actually necessary. So many of these networks do less than 100,000 viewers in total-day average; there just aren’t enough eyeballs to support them. But they’re taking money out of the ecosystem.”
Variety adds: “The new scrutiny on underperforming channels goes hand in hand with the other big jolt in the pay-TV arena: the rise of low-cost streaming-channel packages. A host of well-heeled digital giants see a market opportunity in targeting consumers — call them cord-cutters, cord-shavers, or cord-nevers — put off by the high price of the traditional MVPD packages that offer 200-plus channels.”
We encourage readers to click here to go to Variety to read the full report.