TVfreedom.org today called on eight public interest groups to join the organization in developing an open and collaborative process that will place a public spotlight on what it calls “the abusive billing and business practices being undertaken by the cable and satellite TV industry that are harming consumers.” TVfreedom.org looks forward to establishing an ongoing dialogue with each of the organizations addressed in its open letter, including: Public Knowledge, Free Press, Consumers Union, Consumer Action, Consumer Federation of America, New America Foundation, National Consumer League and Public Citizen.
“We hope to fight together to end the abusive video marketplace practices harming consumers,” says TVfreedom spokesman, Robert C. Kenny. “Parts of the marketplace are broken, and we believe it is time for the federal government to adopt and implement a series of policy and regulatory reforms that will ultimately bring relief to consumers on their rising monthly pay-TV bills.”
The letter states that the lack of competition and consumer choice in the U.S. video marketplace, coupled with lax federal oversight of cable and satellite TV operators’ pricing and billing practices, raises significant public interest concerns.In its most recent analysis earlier this year, Consumers Union said that consumers’ monthly cable and satellite TV bills have increased at double the rate of inflation in each of the past 15 years through 2012. According to the NPD Group, consumers today are paying, on average, nearly $90 per month for pay-TV service, with expected monthly bills of $200 per month on the horizon by 2020 if current market trends continue.