A federal judge in Los Angeles has ruled that a lawsuit against cable MSOs, satellite TV companies and the owners of many national cable networks will proceed. The purported class action lawsuit on behalf of consumers seeks to force cable companies to offer subscribers a la carte channel selection. It contends that programmers and distributors force consumers to buy channels that they don’t want in bundles, thereby making them pay too much.
“We applaud the federal court’s decision allowing the class action antitrust suit to proceed to trial on the merits of the complaint. It is a breath of fresh air to know that cable consumers still have a voice in our court system. Sadly, the consumer’s voice in Washington DC and elsewhere has been muted by the cable industry’s enormous wallet,” said Parents Television Council President Tim Winter, whose organization has been pushing for a la carte.
RBR/TVBR observation: This is just stupid. A la carte will hurt consumers, not help them. Cable customers will get fewer channels and pay more for each one. Not to mention that many small cable channels will be forced out of business – the very types of channels that this lawsuit claims to want more of.