Bill would allow consumers to pick and choose cable channels - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Bill would allow consumers to pick and choose cable channels

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Sen. John McCain has introduced a bill that could force cable, satellite, and telco companies to offer a la carte video programming. This would allow you to pick and choose the channels you pay for.

Surf the web for a television subscription deal and you'll find all sorts of bundles that force you to pay for channels you don't watch or even want.

Comcast customer Wanda Hurt wants to pick and choose the channels she pays for.

"I just don't watch those channels. So, you know, it goes to waste. Most of the channels I don't watch," said Hurt.

A bill by McCain would force the industry to offer a la carte TV subscriptions. It's called the "Television Consumer Freedom Act," and most consumers All News 106.7's Trey Thomas spoke with think it could save them money.

"If they were be able to pro-rate that somehow, then it would much better. You obviously would be able to acquire more affordable cable, I think," said Chad Ferguson.

Technology industry analyst Jeff Kagan also likes the idea, but thinks it would be best if the industry did it on its own.

"The government has a heavy hand and always goes a lot further than they should. But if they're not gonna do it, if the industry is not gonna take care of this problem on their own, the only option is the government," Kagan said.

McCain's bill goes even further by prohibiting sports broadcasting blackouts in venues funded wholly or partially by federal state or local government. It's a practice that struggling sports franchises face that likely wouldn't affect the popular Atlanta Falcons.

"But I could see how smaller franchises  --Tampa Bay, places like that would want to watch it and couldn't see it would definitely be a perk," said Trae River, a DirecTV subscriber.

FOX 5 reached out to the Atlanta Falcons to see if the blackout provision of the bill could impact the new stadium deal.

The Falcons told FOX 5 that the bill would not affect the new stadium agreements they have in place with the Georgia World Congress Center Authority and the city of Atlanta.

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