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Does TV need an Affordable 'Cable' Act to hold on to millennial subscribers?




A group of millennial-aged friends watch television.
A group of millennial-aged friends watch television.
Wonderlane/Flickr

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If you’re an average American TV subscriber, you know the Home Shopping Network is one of the 194 or so channels you’re forced to have, whether or not you’re interested in buying Nicki Minaj’s latest fragrance.  

In fact, most of us only watch about 17 of these channels. Still, we shell out more than $120 a month for that huge cable or satellite package.

But, with the rise of streaming services, TV audiences have been cutting the cord. Now the traditional media giants are feeling the pinch. In the last quarter, cable and satellite companies lost a record 625,000 customers, according to a report this week by the research firm SNL Kagan.

People who still watch TV aren’t watching as much, meaning advertising revenues are falling, too.  A week ago, seven media companies, including Disney, Viacom and 21st Century Fox, lost a total of $45-billion in value.  

Now they're hoping to think of innovative ways to lure and keep millennial users. CBS has launched CBS All Access to provide an option for viewers who don't want to pay for cable or satellite.

"Another idea is to do it like democrats advocate with health care, that you can stay on your parents' plan until you're 26, even if you move out of the house," said The Hollywood Reporter's Paul Bond on The Frame. "The theory being you'll get hooked on it, you won't be able to live without it, plus when you're 26 you'll be able to pay for it."

Listen to the audio above for more on how cord cutting is forcing cable companies to change.



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