Breaking down the battle over Internet television
There is a fierce battle brewing over the future of television and Marvin Ammori, a law professor at the University of Nebraska explains in this video how several recent events highlight the race by companies to be best positioned as the Internet and TV become one.
In the fees battle between Fox and Cablevision, Web versions of Fox shows were used as a negotiating weapon. Google’s push into Internet television hit a road bump when networks blocked their Web-based programs from Google TV viewers.
The tangle of interests by broadcasters, cable and satellite firms, and new Web delivery platforms such as Apple TV create a frame for how regulators will look at Comcast’s proposed merger with NBC Universal, Ammori said.
“The future of television may be decided within the next six to 12 months and a lot of industry players know that,” Ammori said during a recent stop at The Post.
Consumers want to be able to “disaggregate content,” and pick shows like they pick songs on iTunes, Ammori said. And he argues that the Federal Communications Commission needs to look at program access rules as they apply to the Internet. He advocates for the agency to push forward on net neutrality rules to prevent companies from blocking shows and software from consumers.
Jeff Jarvis, a journalism professor at City University of New York, wrote in his blog Buzzmachine.com this week, that users have no loyalty to networks – a relic of the broadcast and cable models.
But that model would overhaul a very lucrative model cable providers and broadcasters hope, in part, to extend to the Web.
“This unbundling will be painful for cable companies,” Jarvis wrote. “They gather huge revenue selling those bundles to trapped customers who have no choice but to pay for Fuse if they want Food. It won’t be an easy transition. But once choice arrives, we will demand our freedom from bundles.”
| November 2, 2010; 10:22 AM ET
Categories: Consumers, FCC, Net Neutrality, VIDEOS
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