Monday, May 19, 2008

It's about the politics

I was reading an article about Al Jazeera English and the inability of the TV station to break into US cable companies. After they failed last year, citing the cable companies' response their network is not acceptable to viewers, they are changing the presentation, closer to BBC News.

Except BBC News also isn't in the channels with US cable companies? Why is that? Does it explain why US cable companies are playing politics with the news? Gee, any wonder why Americans don't have a world view, we don't get world news, only the world news the major cable companies want us to hear and the cable companies provide.

What's ironic to me is that now the US cable companies are citing lack of channel capacity in their refusal to add either BBC News or Al Jazeera English. Except they adding all sorts of extra Pay-Per-View (PPV) channels and adding all sorts of HD channels for existing digital channels. And these channels sell products, like home repair, food and cooking, gardening, etc., to viewers. And they're adding other HD channels, like the SciFi channel, Science&Nature, National Geographic, etc.

In addition there are five fulltime news channel along with several non-English news channels. Adding BBC News and Al Jazeera English would not be a stretch for the cable companies, and I for one would like to have them as a choice. I would pay for them as alternative news that gives me a broader sense of the news. I want to hear about the world and how the US is seen by the world.

So to the cable companies, get a clue about your customers. You seem to think you do, but then why do so many customers, like me too, don't like you. We have to use you because you have exclusive rights to areas, and unfortunately the two satellite TV networks aren't any better in terms in costs and worse in terms of service due to bad weather. But you, cable companies, are striving to get worse every day.

So, dear cable companies, when will I get my choice to add BBC New and Al Jazeera English?

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