Hearne: Music Scribe Bags on Newspapers, Sports, Cable TV & CDs

derek-jeter1This just in…

With odd exception, old people don’t like change. Big surprise. Then again, young people aren’t particularly fond of it either unless there’s something in it for them.

But in the case of music and entertainment biz attorney turned scribe Bob Lefsetz, when it comes to change, just bring it.

Some excerpts from a recent Lefsetz missive:

******* I don’t want to pay for sports.

I’m not talking a trip to Dodger Stadium, or Staples, but I’m not too eager for that either. I wait until one of my well-heeled friends coughs up a courtside seat, otherwise I just stay home and ignore the whole damn thing.

I didn’t used to be this way. I lived for sports.

But then the Yankees were free on TV.

20130109-mumford-x600-1357749536******* People think Napster ruined the music business. What they don’t realize is it was a harbinger of things to come. Turns out most people didn’t want the album. Sorry all you musos making and devouring full length statements. With the advent of the CD, albums became so long, you could have sex, take a shower and call your mother and still have time to take out the garbage before they played through…as soon as people got the option to download just what they wanted, they gave up on the old model.

******* Kind of like with TV. My cable bill is insane. Of course I want the high speed Internet, the super high speed I pay for. But all those TV channels? I haven’t got time to watch them. I finally canceled Cinemax and Showtime. But what bugs me is sports. Because I’m paying a ton of money for something I never watch, and so are you.

Well, maybe you’re watching, but everybody with a cable subscription is paying. We’re subsidizing your lifestyle. Against the modern welfare system? Then you should be against the cable TV bundle.

But they tell us if they de-bundle it we’ll pay more!

What a load of hogwash. The truth is sports and niche channels profit handsomely via payments from providers, which are garnered by ripping off subscribers. They just don’t want the gravy train to end. But it’s gonna.

house-of-cards-poster******* The only place where people buy more than they want is Costco. And they do so because it’s so damn cheap. But all the content industries are charging us a fortune, and as soon as the public gains an option, people bolt.

******* The big story of the winter is “House Of Cards,” on Netflix. Delivered all at once so people can binge. This is the future. Reruns are done. It’s got to be all new all the time on television or we’re tuning out. Remember waiting for new episodes of “Seinfeld”…that model is toast!

What else don’t you want? Lefsetz queries.

******* The opening act. Once upon a time you got to the show early, believing there was a reason to pay attention to the opener. Now you know someone paid someone behind the scenes and for your $100 ticket you don’t want to be bored, you’ll arrive for the headliner, thank you.

newspaper-crumpled******* And it’s newspapers too. What kind of model is that? A surface reading of the news so you can sell advertising? I can get the surface on a zillion sites online, believe me, if someone shoots up a school or Congress grinds to a halt, I don’t need a high-priced reporter to tell me the story.

******* And ignore the press. The Netflix backlash? Nobody wants to rent a DVD anymore. Reed Hastings was right. Streaming is not only the future, it’s now. If you don’t make your stuff available for streaming, that just means no one is gonna watch it….You’d better make it easy and cheap or free or feel like free, because very few people are truly interested.

******* Cable TV is gonna crumble. It’s gonna happen overnight. Kinda like the switch from film to digital photography. You remember, we were hearing that digital was coming for a decade, but it didn’t. Then, overnight, digital cameras exploded and film disappeared and Kodak went into the dumper.

thinker-closeLefsetz’ bottom line:

So why am I still paying for you to watch?

That’s the question.

And I’m not the only one asking it.

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11 Responses to Hearne: Music Scribe Bags on Newspapers, Sports, Cable TV & CDs

  1. Mysterious J says:

    Hey Hearne:

    Are you REALLY so lazy that you not only refuse to write your own column, you refuse to learn how to spell the name of the guy who DID write it?

    • tiad says:

      Yes, Jr. really is that lazy.

      • tiad says:

        And he’ll fix it now pretty soon and not even own up to it.

        • admin says:

          You are one funny guy.

          You want me to own up to a typo? Do you think the Star even does that? They make online typos all the time. There’s a difference between an online typo and a correction.

          Anyway, glad you’re having fun

  2. balbonis moleskine says:

    I never understood why bundling of cable TV channels that are on completely divergent topics is not a violation of the Sherman Anti Trust act.

    People still listen to albums. They just don’t buy them. I heard there was a Bay where Pirates like to hang out. Somewhere in Sweden looking to plunder the bootys of the Swedish bikini team.

    Even on my huge plasma with blu-ray the action movies and special-effects driven movies are not the same. So I think movie theaters will always be around.

  3. the dude says:

    I’m oooooold! And I’m not happy! And I don’t like things now compared to the way they used to be. All this progress — phooey! In my day, we didn’t have these cash machines that would give you money when you needed it. There was only one bank in each state — it was open only one hour a year. And you’d get in line, seventeen miles long, and the line became an angry mob of people — fornicators and thieves, mutant children and circus freaks — and you waited for years and by the time you got to the teller, you were senile and arthritic and you couldn’t remember your own name. You were born, got in line, and ya died! And that’s the way it was and we liked it!

    Life was simpler then. There wasn’t all this concern about hy-giene! It my days, we didn’t have Kleenex. When you turned seventeen, you were given the family handkerchief. … It hadn’t been washed in generations and it stood on its own … filled with diseases and swarmin’ with flies. … If you tried to blow your nose, you’d get an infection and your head would swell up and turn green and children would burst into tears at the sight o’ ya! And that’s the way it was and we liked it!

    Life was a carnival! We entertained ourselves! We didn’t need moooovin’ pitchurrrres. In my day, there was only one show in town — it was called “Stare at the sun!” … That’s right! You’d sit in the middle of an open field and stare up at the sun till your eyeballs burst into flames! And you thought, “Oh, no! Maybe I shouldn’t’ve stared directly into the burning sun with my eyes wide open.” But it was too late! Your head was on fire and people were roastin’ chickens over it. … And that’s the way it was and we liked it!

    Progress?! Flobble-de-flee! In my day, when we were angry and frustrated, we just said, “Flobble-de-flee!” ’cause we were idiots and we didn’t know what else to say! Just a bunch o’ illiterate Cro-Magnons, blowin’ on crusty handkerchiefs, waitin’ in lines for our head to burst into flame and that’s the way it was and we liked it!

    • balbonis moleskine says:

      slow clap for the Dana Carvey bit….

      Yea, yea, yea, yea! Hey! I’m old, and I’m not happy! Everything today is improved. And I don’t like it! I hate it! In my day, we didn’t have hair dryers. If you wanted to blow-dry your hair, you stood outside during a hurricane. Your hair was dry, but you had a sharp piece of wood driven clear through your skull. And that’s the way it was, and you liked it. You loved it. Whoopee! I’m a human-head kabob!

      Now, we didn’t have minoxidil and hairweaves. In my day, if your hair started falling out when you were 16, by 19, you were a bald freak. There was nothing you could do about it. Children would spit at you, and no woman would mate with you, so you couldn’t pass on your disgusting baldness gene. You were a public menace, a chrome dome at age 20. And that’s the way it was. And we liked it! We loved it! Hallelujah! I’m a bald freak! Oh, happy day!

      Not like today — everybody feeling good about themselves. I hate it! In my day, we didn’t have these thin, latex condoms. So you could enjoy sexual pleasure. In my day, there was only one kind of condom — you took a rabbit skin and wrapped it around your privates and tied it off with a bungee cord. And you couldn’t feel nothing! And half the time, you didn’t even know if your partner was there. And we used the same one, over and over again! ‘Cause we were ignorant morons, just a bunch of hairless head kabobs, standing around with rabbit skins on our dinks. And that’s the way it was. And we liked it.

  4. smartman says:

    Can’t wait for the Springsteen update; 957 Stations and Nothin’ On.

  5. Marco says:

    I took the liberty to sending Mr. Lefsetz links to you re-publishing several of his columns in their entirety without even linking his site. Hope he’s ok with it!

  6. Super Dave says:

    Cable is legalized robbing of the people. First you pay for it then you’re expected to watch a bunch of so called special channels but are hounded with more commercials on them than free regular broadcasting stations.. It’s sort of like going to Home Depot and buying something that has their name all over it. You not only paid for it but you will continue to advertise their name for them for free. Called taking advantage of the consumer and I’m tired of it. So before long cable will once again be for those who have and not for those who don’t. Lots of people including myself are getting tired of having to spend 200 or more a month to get all the channels we want but are stuck with an additional huge lineup due to bundling of crap we never watch. I get well over a hundred channels but only watch or use maybe 20 of those. But for the most part what’s a person to do, not much one can do other than with out. The internet stuff for movies and old shows is getting better but watch out, a friend in the cable business tells me they are aware of that and starting to watch how much bandwidth people are using and trying to come up with ways to gig those who go to watching movies and shows over the internet. I have a top limit on my internet system and if I reach it I get a semi nice e-mail telling me I am using above normal bandwidth and subject to having too pay more per month or will have to upgrade my service. So far no extra charges but in the fine print it’s there for them too if they become bigger pricks than they already are.

  7. Casey Jaskiewicz says:

    Cable television is a system of distributing television programs to subscribers via radio frequency (RF) signals transmitted through coaxial cables or light pulses through fiber-optic cables. This contrasts with traditional broadcast television (terrestrial television) in which the television signal is transmitted over the air by radio waves and received by a television antenna attached to the television. FM radio programming, high-speed Internet, telephone service, and similar non-television services may also be provided through these cables..

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