The most-discussed trend in pay TV has been no-pay TV. The number of those abandoning pay TV — those dubbed “cable cutters” — has recently jumped from 4.5% of U.S. households in 2010 to 6.5% today according to an Experian Marketing survey. However, a more insidious trend is also afoot: cable shavers. This term denotes those who keep pay TV, but have traded down in terms of packages and now have fewer channels.
Not only that, but the trend among cable shavers is just as pronounced: a recent Nielsen survey reported in the The Wall Street Journal finds the top 40 most widely distributed channels in 2010 have lost an average of 3.2 million subscribers, or 3% of their distribution. And while it is important to note that this figure includes cable cutters, it doesn’t fully account for the entire loss of distribution.
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