That said, we know there are exceptions: USA Network, TBS, Fox News and others can pull in more prime-time viewers than the likes of The CW, or other niche broadcast networks. Individual cable shows such as “The Walking Dead” can regularly beat any and all TV network shows in key viewership areas for an entire season.
But generally TV broadcasters still reign supreme -- which is why Dish Network, as well as other pay TV companies, needs to have them as part of their programming portfolio.
Now Dish wants to change the game for new digital offerings. The company might not want TV broadcast stations to be included in the basic plan of its upcoming cloud-based TV service, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Dish wants big media companies like NBC and Disney-ABC to exclude their TV broadcast properties -- or at least to reserve the option to put those broadcast properties on a separate higher-priced tier. That could be a problem down the line since big media is all about leveraging all their properties -- cable, broadcast (as well as digital rights) -- with distributors.
Dish, at least, seems to want to give consumers the option to pay more for those broadcast TV stations in a separate tier -- kind of like what many pay TV providers have been pushing to do with expensive sports cable networks like ESPN.
Dish intends its cloud-based basic package, with a fee of around $30 a month, to be an inexpensive alternative to the pricey $90 and more traditional monthly pay TV package.
All this would mean higher-rated TV shows like “The Voice,” “NCIS” and “Scandal”, as well as much NFL sports programming, wouldn’t be available with Dish’s new service. That might work for light, occasional TV viewers -- or young millennials and/or Gen-Xers -- who would still get a variety of channels, including cable news networks.
Consumers think they’re saving on entertainment? You always get what you pay for.