Exposing Cable TV’s Ties to Anti-Cord Cutting Stories




Cutting the cable connection to coax connector illustrating retired people cancelling cable TV service

Cutting the cable connection to coax connector illustrating retired people cancelling cable TV serviceRecently there has been a flood of anti-cord cutting stories all targeting the same ideas: cord cutting costs too much and is too hard. I cut that argument apart in a post already this week that you can find here. This time I want to take a look at the cable companies that are pushing this agenda.

The most recent anti-cord cutting story came from Wired with all the arguments you would expect. It presented one person’s suggested cord cutting lineup and claims it costs more than cable TV without even listing the cost of cable TV.

What I found is the cable TV service it is pushing is Charter’s Spectrum. So we decided to dig into this a little bit more. Wired’s parent company, Advance Publications, owns 13% of Charter Communications. Not only that but Advance Publications owns 31% of Discovery Communications, which is in the process of buying Scripps to acquire channels such as HGTV, The Travel Channel, and more. It would have been nice if the writer would have disclosed that in the story.

It does not stop there. CBS News published a rather negative story on cord cutting last week. Once again CBS is owner of several major cable TV network. Its not surprising that it runs an anti-cord cutting story without disclosing its financial ties to cable TV.

Next up is the NY Post, which says cord cutting costs as much as cable. Again it fails to mention that the NY Post is owned by News Corp. Its owner owns 21st Century Fox.

I could keep going, but you get the idea. When you look into these stories more often than not you find some connection to a cable network or cable company.

Now it is possible that ownership or financial ties had zero influence on the story. Recently when Refinery29 ran an anti-cord cutting story that took my statements horribly out of context I pushed them on their ties to cable networks. It quickly added a disclaimer to the story pointing that out and reassured me that it had no bearing on its story.

It is possible that all of these authors all came up with the same argument with zero influence on their stories. In fairness, every company I ever asked about this has said so; however, it would have been nice for them to disclose the fact that they are for the most part owned by cable networks…

Now I own a pro-cord cutting website. I started the website to help others with cord cutting, and I am blunt about it. So it’s perfectly fair to raise questions about what you see here. I encourage you to take both the pro and con cord cutting stories with a grain of salt and do your own research.

With that said it would be nice if these websites would be blunt about the fact that they are partly owned by cable networks when they run these anti-cord cutting stories.

So next time you see a story promoting cable as an easier and less expensive option to cord cutting do some research on who owns the site. You may be surprised to find out they have a financial interest in cable.

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