Why are the cable companies trying to rip us off ?

by Jeff Wiener on August 18, 2009

HIGHWAY ROBBERY2I know. Not really a big shocker here, but this article in the Globe and Mail caught my attention. The monthly cost of cable has gone up over 29% over the past 6 years.

That’s right – a 29% increase in price over 6 years. Apparently the worst beating is over for the stock market –my mutual funds are still down, yet my cable bill keeps going up. Maybe I need to ask my adviser if shares in the cable company are a better choice.

For some reason, Gregory Turco’s blog about the prices that he is experiencing from our neighbors to the south resonated with me. Turco got me thinking about what the true cost of cable is to me.

For me, to get the package that fits my current needs is about $182/month. This includes my digital channels, some movies, all the HDTV, my upgraded internet, and my long distance phone service. Taxes and the price of the box are extra, but for easy math let’s just say $182/month.

Doing the math like Turco did, my cable bill equates to $6.07 per day. In comparison, my power bill works out to about $4.50 per day. I can go a lot longer without the internet than I can without power. It might be difficult, but it can be done.

Since Entourage is the only show on Sundays that I faithfully watch, it is costing me over $24 per month to watch it. At this rate, maybe I should just wait for the box set to come out. The season spans ten months, and usually costs $50 – so I will be saving almost $200. Nothing shabby about that.

I know that there is no point in complaining about the price of the cable. But at a time when the cable companies are dropping channels and raising rates is it time to start seriously considering other options? Furthermore, we’re in a recession, not exactly the best time to be raising utility rates.

In the world of technology, prices go down the longer a product stays in circulation. So why is it different in the world of cable? I’m thinking MONOPOLY ?

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