Cutting The Cord Is Now Surprisingly Easy

It’s been a while since “cutting the cord” became a thing. Countless articles were written about the challenges and potentially extra cost that ditching your cable subscription was going to cause.

I also remember from these articles, during the initial “cord-cutting” wave, the challenges of getting the cable provider to do the deed. There were strong sales tactics unleashed on early cord-cutters (“we have a great deal for you”). There were stalling tactics, like you had to go to a physical office with all the hardware the cable company had given you, and then they would cut your cord. Or you were transferred and placed on hold so many times, you would give up.

Cutting the cord was both an act of rebellion, and an exercise in persistence and creativity in those early days. Many of the platforms that today provide cordless access to the world of entertainment and sports were not as well-established back then. Watching the Super Bowl or the Olympics without a cable subscription was almost impossible and required knowledge of borderline illegal channels and platforms (FilmOn anyone?).



Fast-forward to the year 2022. After having discussed it many times, the Albarda family decided that enough was enough. We rarely watch live TV anymore apart from the local evening news, which all our local stations also offer online, as well as via their app and via Roku. The sports we watch is provided by Paramount Plus and Peacock. Everything else is on-demand via all the well-known platforms.

So, with a sense of dread, I called our cable provider, Spectrum, to inform them of our wish to separate. We had already downgraded our live TV package to bare bones a few years ago, but now we only wanted to keep their (really fast) internet. Yes, we also had a landline phone we were ditching as well.

A friendly young lady answered the phone, and when I informed her of our wish to divorce, she said “Of course, when should it start?” I was certain this was a trick question, where she was going to point out a vague clause in our cable agreement that would lead to having Spectrum for another five years. Or having to pay a penalty. Or some other roadblock. So I asked, gingerly: “Well, when can it be changed?”

“Any day, sir. Like, right now if you want,” was her cheerful answer. “You will be charged for the days of the month you have had cable and phone service, but next month your bill will only reflect high-speed internet.” Still not certain it could be this simple, I asked about Spectrum’s equipment that is in our house. And yes, I can ship that (at my expense) or drop it off at a Spectrum service center (for free).

“That’s all?” I asked. “That is all,” said Millennial Spectrum.

I was caught so off-guard about the immediacy of this, in my mind, still-momentous decision that I asked for a reprieve, mumbling that I’d discuss it with my wife and would call back. Well, we have discussed it, and we are ready. We are one final (landline) call away from ditching cable and landline and becoming a truly wireless family.

I am curious whether you have ditched cable (or satellite) and have cut the cord. How did it go? What challenges have you faced (if any)? And have you suffered any Post-Cable Distress Disorder?

2 comments about "Cutting The Cord Is Now Surprisingly Easy".
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  1. Ric Douglas from The AxeHole, February 18, 2022 at 9:30 p.m.

    I have a PDF guide that I update often on how to watch TV free and legal. I started it over 15 years ago and share it for free in cord cutting and streaming groups on Facebook and other sites.

  2. Erica Nulik from Antennas Direct, February 22, 2022 at 11:58 a.m.

    You can always watch your local broadcast networks like ABC, CBS, NBC, The CW, PBS and more for free with a TV antenna. Look into Antennas Direct or Mohu. They can also perform a signal analysis for your location to help you determine the best antenna for you. 

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