VERSUS Charges Cable Companies $4 less than ESPN, and is Even Cheaper Than NHL Net

From The Consumerist:

After the spat between Cablevision and Disney invaded the Oscar telecast last Sunday, the fees channels charge cable companies (who then pass them along to you) have come into the spotlight. All Things Digital posted a list from industry analyst SNL Kagan that shows the wholesale prices each channel charges cable companies for their product.

The list is making the rounds as fodder for a la carte cable activists. It makes it very apparent how much of your bill goes to sports programming — which tends to irritate people who hate sports. Alternatively, you can study the list and count how many stupid makeover shows you are unwillingly paying for.

However, I happen to love sports, and I imagine anyone reading this blog does.  Look, I’m not going to play Comcast schill here, but it seems like VERSUS is a good buy compared to some networks as far as the expense to the customers goes.  Even if they are looking for a slight increase – which again and again, they’ve claimed to not be doing – it’s still likely a decent deal.  The fact that VERSUS charges less than NHL Network shocked me, but that could have more to do with NHL Net being on a different cable tier.

What’s everyone here’s thoughts about this?  Big tap of the helmet to Buddy Oakes for sending this over.


One Response to VERSUS Charges Cable Companies $4 less than ESPN, and is Even Cheaper Than NHL Net

  1. Marty says:

    The debate between Comcast and DirecTV goes much deeper than just fees. For one thing, both Comcast and DirecTV own networks that have contracts that have lapsed. For instance DirecTV owns FSN Pittsburgh, Northwest and Rocky Mtn. Their contracts with Comcast have expired. In Comcast’s case, SportNet New England was lacking a contract with DirecTV while Northwest and Philadelphia have never been offered on satellite. These are all being used as leverage.

    Number two, DirecTV wants Versus on a higher programming tier. Comcast doesn’t want it moved. This is one reason NHL Network can charge a high fee. Access to NHL Center Ice is also included in that fee for most providers.

    Either way, it shows how much sports figures into bills. When looking at ratings Versus is a long ways from many of those networks. Even ESPN hardly justifies their fees when looking at ratings. Another thing to consider is that many distribution deals include other networks, that aren’t factored into this list. For instance, the total contract may include all the ESPN Networks and not just one or two.

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