A Creative Proposal to Reduce the Cost of Content

Video tends to be a driver for broadband, particularly in rural areas. The smaller providers serving rural areas are challenged with higher costs for providing video content than operators with national footprints; costs that are inevitably passed on to consumers. Shirley Bloomfield, Chief Executive Officer of NTCA, explains an idea, that was presented last week to the FCC, for the creation of a mega video programming purchase cooperative.

To give it a substantial base of subscribers, the anchor of this buying entity would be “New Charter” (Time-Warner/Charter combination).   The proposal to the FCC is that the Time-Warner/Charter merger should be conditioned on New Charter being the anchor tenant of such an entity. The idea New Charter would provide a base of subscribers, that, when combined with the hundreds of smaller operators, could provide more leverage in content negotiations. It remains to be seen how this proposal will influence the FCC’s decision on the merger.

Coverage made possible by NTCA.

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