[opendtv] Re: Whether collusion is necessary

  • From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 5 Jul 2013 00:27:41 +0000

Craig Birkmaier wrote:

> And you are stretching the issue of DRM way beyond reality. The DRM issue
> is better discussed in terms of technologies like HDMI and cablecard.
> ISPs are not involved AT ALL. CE companies must license and implement
> HDMI , and possibly other DRM standards in order to sell their products
> and access some protected OTT sites.

Okay on HDMI. Yes, that's in place, and all PC companies adopted it. I suppose 
you can call that collusion, but colluding with everyone equally somehow makes 
it different, I think.

> The real issue here is whether the media conglomerates are going to make
> their content available to NEW middlemen, and at what price? Or if they
> will eliminate middlemen altogether, and sell directly to consumers.

Craig, honestly, they've ALREADY done both. New middlemen and no middlemen. Why 
ignore this? What content they offer over each model will no doubt change over 
time, as it has been doing all along.

> This [NFL] example was provided to illustrate just how much control the
> "content" industries have over politicians.  THis is not about collusion
> with certain sponsors. It is about protection from real competition.

I don't see any necessary "politician" involvement at all. Any owner of any 
product is NORMALLY allowed to decide how widely to distribute the product for 
sale. If anything, politicians are involved when people demand more widespread 
distribution, not the other way around. As in the Coors beer case.

> You seem to believe that just because the Internet and OTT services CAN
> deliver the same content as the MVPDs, that they can change the existing
> business model based on the bundling of channels.

Not at all. I believe that the same deals can be made with OTT services as are 
made with MVPDs, in terms that matter *to content OWNERS*. All owners want is 
money. The more the merrier. The difference is how customers are served by the 
different schemes. That's where you gain in flexibility with the added 
distribution options. As other articles you posted show, the MVPDs are not 
blind to this either.

> Just because the time has finally come that the MVPDs are willing to
> allow third party devices to connect to their networks, does not mean
> that "the center of the mass has shifted."

Nonsense. Look, the MVPDs are only doing this because their old scheme no 
longer works. If people demand to see those TV shows or games on their cell 
phones and tablets, the old stuck-at-home proprietary STB and proprietary 
transmission protocol are out of the picture. So the MVPDs are the ones 
adapting to the new reality.

> Sorry, Bert, but the Internet is not ready to scale up to take over
> delivery of TV to the masses.

Again, how odd to see you contradict your previous self. You were sounding like 
it was already ready, years and years ago. The simple fact is, Craig, if these 
MVPDs are offering TV to mobile handheld devices, including now talk of even 
live games, this Internet is evidently reaching a point where this IS feasible. 
You keep telling us how no one watches TV on a home TV anymore, don't you? Then 
how is it that suddenly you can't get TV any other way?

>> This the same Comcast that made a huge deal about this overdesigned
>> new proprietary STB/PVR combo, yes?
> Did you see what it was running on?

Who the h*ll cares what it was running on? The only thing that matters, for 
this discussion, is what type of TV stream it was consuming. The box was tied 
to the fixed-at-home broadcast streams from Comcast, just like back in 1978. If 
this content is already available over IP, as you claim, and it's also 
available on demand over IP, all the more reason to question why anyone should 
be impressed with this anachronistic PVR throwback. All you seem to do is get 
giddy because it looked like some Apple device. Who cares?


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