I’m now about 5 or 7 classes away from finishing either one or two MBA programs at my university.  It’s been a long road and the days just fly by but I get to learn something new every day from my peers.   I recently learned through a discussion in a marketing class that many students are or have cancelled their cable TV subscriptions and switched to things like NetFlix, Hulu, Amazon Streaming, iTunes or other services.

I guess this is why cable operators are now scrambling trying to offer al-la-carte TV channels after decades of fighting it.

Cable operators are privately working on a plan to force programmers to unbundle their networks and allow customers to subscribe to channels on an individual basis.

As consumers,

  • We used to buy whole albums and now with iTunes we simply buy the songs we like.
  • We used to have to take whatever bad food airlines served but now they offer a-la-carte menu items.
  • We used to be stuck with book publishing cartels and retail book outlets but we can now download books al-la-carte.

The days of mass subsidization seem to be coming to an end.   I never liked the idea of paying to subsidize hundreds of channels I never watched (20+ cartoon/Disney channels, 40+ ESPN/sports channels, Opra Network).   Seriously, how much TV do cable operators think we can watch and subsidize?   At some point, something had to give and here we are, that day has come.    The next evolution will certainly be around health insurance with a whopping average charge of $15,000 per year for health insurance, it isn’t sustainable by businesses nor consumers.

The 2010’s will be known as the al-la-carte generation and hopefully it will engulf education, health care, and government institutions because they are no longer sustainable in their present forms.