Washington, D.C. April 23, 2015 – Major broadcasters once again are standing in the way of progress and consumer choice.
On Monday, Verizon announced that it will offer customers a new customized version of cable programming with greater choice. Called Verizon FiOS Custom TV, the new option allows consumers to purchase a base of TV programming with the ability to choose “channel packs” around interests such as kids, lifestyle, entertainment, news and sports.
Rather than supporting an innovative new option for consumers, big broadcasters are threatening to sue Verizon, arguing that FiOS Custom TV violates the terms of their contract by offering the content in a customized package.
“Big broadcasters are at it again,” said ATVA spokesman Nick Lanyi. “First they killed a bipartisan Local Choice amendment that would have given consumers the power to choose which local broadcast stations they wanted to purchase. Now they’re trying to prevent Verizon from offering options that give consumers greater choice.”
“Broadcasters want to force pay-TV providers to carry programming even if the consumer doesn’t watch it or want to pay for it,” Lanyi said. “To boost their profits, big broadcasters are hiding the remote from consumers.”
It’s time for Congress to take a serious look at why big broadcasters that profit from taxpayer-owned airwaves are desperate to limit consumer choice.
The American Television Alliance (ATVA) brings together an unprecedented coalition of consumer groups, cable, satellite, telephone companies, and independent programmers to raise awareness about the risk viewers face as broadcasters increasingly threaten service disruptions that would deny viewers access to the programs they and their families enjoy.
For more information about ATVA, visit our website. Follow us on Twitter @ATVAlliance.