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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Saturday, June 15, 2024

Charter Cable bumps rates up after business costs rise

UW-Madison faculty and students living outside of residence halls may be surprised when this month's cable bill arrives. Charter Communications announced Jan. 3 the price of its expanded basic cable services will be raised, effective today.  




Expanded basic cable prices have increased from $37.95 to $42.35 per month, while digital cable prices will remain the same. The MVP package, an option that includes expanded basic and digital cable as well as movie channels, has risen from $64.95 to $74.95 per month. 




Jeff Lambert, director of marketing for the Madison Management Group of Charter Communications, said that a number of factors contributed to the increase.  




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\The major cause of increase is the increases in our business costs,""Lambert said. ""The predominant increases we see year-in and year-out are the increases in programming.""  




Charter pays programmers for the various services in its lineup, all of which carry original programming that costs money, Lambert said. In turn, the costs are passed along to consumers.  




UW-Madison junior Crystal Degrote said she thinks the new cable price is too expensive. 




""I don't like the reasoning,"" she said. ""It's not like we're getting any more channels."" 




Rosa Kozub, also a UW-Madison junior, said she feels the increase is unnecessary.  




""I don't like it, but I'm not going to raise issues about it,"" Kozub said.  




Issues have also arisen regarding Charter Communications as a monopoly. 




""We're not a monopoly,"" Lambert said. 




He explained that Charter has franchise rights in Madison, but that doesn't prevent other groups from coming in and requesting their own rights. Satellite providers are growing at a faster rate than the cable industry, which has been a problem for Charter, Lambert said. 




""[The term] 'monopoly' infers there's no competition and right now we face pretty strong competition from the satellite [providers],"" Lambert said.

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