Cable a la carte - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Cable a la carte

AP -- Now, if you want to see "The Sopranos," you don't have to buy a package of 20 channels to just get H-B-O. Or, fans of "Soul Food" can pick up Showtime by itself.

Jeff Chester, executive of the Center for Digital Democracy, a consumer group, explains that a relatively new federal rule could cut your cable bill.

He says a consumer who wants only H-B-O, Showtime or any other premium or pay-per-view channel is no longer forced to purchase a whole tier of networks and can simply tell the cable operator, "Just bill me for the channel I want, please."

Chester says you may not have heard about the new option because cable companies have kept quiet about it. He says the industry doesn't want to lose the (m) millions of dollars it makes each month from captive customers who are forced to buy extra channels.

Business Week magazine estimates that typical households could save more than 20 dollars a month buying one premium channel individually -- without all the extras.

Copyright 2002 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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