Customers as Pawns in Business Disputes

I wanted to write about this last week, but you know the whole "busy busy busy" thing.  My schedule is getting crazier, so here's an abbreviated version of a longer rant I was planning to share.  The topic for today is the way businesses use their customers as pawns. 

Whether it's sports or media, it seems that the paying consumer gets the short end of the stick when dollar signs are on the line.  Players versus owners during contractual negotiations? Lockouts or strikes mean that it's the average fan who will get the shaft while the millionaires and billionaires see who will blink first. When they finally reach an agreement, ticket prices and concession costs still go up.

The worst example is the ongoing battles between  television content creators and TV content carriers. How many times are we going to see popular channels pulled from cable or satellite providers as the powers-that-be argue over how much of the TV viewers' hard-earned money they will divvy up. 

What really angers me is how they try to defend their actions by claiming that it's just part of the business process.  The more it continues to happen, however, the more they continue to disrespect their audiences, the more they will drive away their customers who will grow tired of being pawns. There's a lot of other stuff to see and do in this world, and if entertainment businesses hold back their content long enough, the public might realize that they can find amusement in plenty of other places -- often far cheaper too.