The copy and paste sites are all in a fervor this morning about a story the dirt sheets are covering this week. According to the sheets, Cox Cable is creating an economy tier on their digital cable service that will significantly effect TNA Impact Wrestling ratings, as this tier will not carry SpikeTV (or WWE’s Smackdown for that matter on SyFy).
The news of the new tier actually broke in the traditional news media earlier this month, “Cox Communications Inc. has added a television service option that cuts the price of its most popular package for fewer of its channels.
The new TV Economy tier offers 60 channels, including all the local affiliates of the broadcast networks and 18 digital channels, for $34.99 per month.
Cox’s most popular package, combining its TV Starter tier of basic analog channels and the TV Essential lineup, costs $59.99 per month for 64 channels. That package’s cost has climbed 66 percent in 10 years.
TV Economy customers also will get CNN, Discovery Channel, BET, Animal Planet, American Movie Classics, Disney Channel, Nickelodeon, Food Network, The Weather Channel and E! Entertainment TV, among others.
They won’t get the ESPN sports network, one of the most expensive for cable operators to carry, or most regional sports channels. The new package also leaves out A&E, VH1, Spike TV, Syfy, TNT and others.”
According to Wikipedia (I know) Cox Cable has 2.9 million digital subscribers (those effected by the new tier), Nielsen estimates there are 111 million US cable subscribers. Effectively this only has a potential effect on 2% of the viewing public. Add to this, the entire package is aimed at attracting new subscribers that want a value, and are not already subscribing to the higher tier anyways, and the effect of this new tier on Spike and TNA specifically is negligible.
This is pretty much the old basic non digital package most cable companies already offer, now in the new digital frontier.