Thursday, April 25, 2013

Felix Salmon vs. Chet Kanojia

It's too late for me to think through and research all of the possible issues with these numbers so I'm going to pass these on without further comment for now.

From Salmon's "Aereo and the death of broadcast TV"

Here's the passage Salmon quotes from from Forbes on Kanojia:
“The real question is a consumer question: Can you rightfully disenfranchise 50 million consumers?” he asked. “Is that what the preferred policy is?”

In the event that the networks did go through with it, he speculated that other programmers would be quick to replace them in the role of public broadcasters. “That spectrum is incredibly valuable. Somebody’s going to take advantage of that,” he said.
Here's Salmon's dismissive response:
The 50 million number, by the way, should not be considered particularly reliable: it’s Aereo’s guess as to the number of people who ever watch free-to-air TV, even if they mainly watch cable or satellite. (Maybe they have a hut somewhere with an old rabbit-ear TV in it.)
Here's a comment to Salmon's blog:
“The 50 million number .. is the number of people who ever watch free-to-air TV, even if they mainly watch cable or satellite. ” No! That is the number of people who rely exclusively on over-the-air TV without any cable or satellite. /us-otaonly-tv-viewing-hits-178-of-hhs Also, far from being on the decline, this is actually one of the fastest growing segments of the market. I think it may have something to do with the digital switch and the accompanying radical improvement in visual quality of OTA TV. Exclusive OTA viewer estimates go from 42M in 2010, to 46M in 2011, to 54M in 2012. The reports of the death of bunny ears have been greatly exaggerated. But yes, it is true that OTA-only viewers rank low on the amount of political clout. They are disproportionally young adults and minorities.
And here's what you get when you follow the link:
According to new research by GfK Media, the number of Americans now relying solely on over-the-air (OTA) television reception increased to almost 54 million, up from 46 million just a year ago. The recently completed survey also found that the demographics of broadcast-only households skew towards younger adults, minorities and lower-income families.

The 2012 Ownership Survey and Trend Report, part of The Home Technology Monitor research series, found that 17.8% of all U.S. households with TVs use over-the-air signals to watch TV programming; this compares with 15.0% of homes reported as broadcast-only last year. Overall, GfK Media estimates that more than 20.7 million households representing 53.8 million consumers receive television exclusively through broadcast signals.
I will be posting some arguments that some of the activity we've seen (see the terrestrial superstations post) support Kanojia over Salmon but those come from a completely different direction. I'll take another look at these numbers in the morning.

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