The FTC suggested a new regulation that would prohibit hidden and phony fees that are used to raise the cost of a service above what is advertised.

For many years, this approach has been widespread in cable television. Cable companies will promote one TV pricing but contain a large list of extras, such as RSN fees, Broadcast TV prices, HD Technology fees, and others.

So, what does this imply for you, and how will it affect cable TV in the future? Today, we will go over everything you need to know.

What exactly is the FTC recommending?

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Cable companies would no longer be permitted to hide these fees in small print or in your contract under these proposed new laws, but would be required to reveal them upfront.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) stated in its news release that these “provisions are aimed at ensuring businesses will no longer be able to lure consumers with artificially low prices that they later inflate with mandatory fees or to deceive consumers about the nature and purpose of fees.”

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“All too often, Americans are hit with unexpected and unnecessary fees that they can’t avoid.” “These junk fees now cost Americans tens of billions of dollars per year—money that corporations extract from working families simply because they can,” FTC Chair Lina M. Khan stated. “By concealing the total price, these junk fees make it more difficult for consumers to shop for the best product or service and penalize businesses that are upfront and honest.” The FTC’s proposed regulation to eliminate junk fees will save customers money and time while also making our markets more fair and competitive.”

According to the FTC, this new rule would prohibit hidden and phony fees. The FTC explains these costs as follows:

Fees that are not disclosed. Consumers reported to the FTC that dishonest businesses commonly use bait-and-switch pricing strategies to conceal mandatory costs and mislead customers about the price. This is due to the fact that fees introduced later, but before the purchase, greatly raise the amount that buyers spend. As a result, the proposed rule would make it illegal for firms to advertise prices that conceal or exclude mandatory fees. as well as bogus fees. Many consumers also stated that they frequently do not understand the purpose of fees since dishonest businesses habitually mislead or fail to appropriately disclose the nature or purpose of the fees. The rule would ban merchants from misrepresenting fees and would force them to disclose the amount, purpose, and refundability of fees upfront.
How will this affect cable companies such as Comcast and Spectrum?

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For years, cable TV companies have employed fees to raise the cost of TV over the quoted rate. Comcast currently charges more than $40 per month for RSN and broadcast TV costs. These new regulations may compel firms such as Comcast and Spectrum to include them in the advertised pricing.

For consumers, being able to plainly see the price they will pay once everything is factored in is a significant win. It may require cable TV companies to adjust their advertising when it comes to pricing.

When will these regulations go into effect?

Although these rules are only ideas, the FTC is eager to make them law. However, we could be years away from seeing them implemented, so this is a fantastic starting step.


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