Verizon in talks to charge for TV channels based on real viewing time

Verizon in talks to charge for TV channels based on real viewing time

Few of us like paying for TV we don't use, and there's been attempts to fix a broken model that makes TV providers pay for channels in blocks, no matter the viewer interest. Verizon's lead programming negotiator, Terry Denson, has told the Wall Street Journal that a more logical usage-based approach may come to FiOS TV. The telecom firm is in talks with mid-size and smaller content companies to pay for channels only based on how long we watch: Verizon would pay whenever a subscriber tunes in for at least five minutes. In theory, it's a win-win strategy that lowers Verizon's overhead (and hopefully ours) while rewarding the more successful smaller channels. Of course, there's no guarantee that a deal will go through -- and while Verizon will ask about a similar model when renewing major contracts, Cablevision's battle shows how much media giants will resist disruption of a steady revenue stream.

*Verizon has acquired AOL, Engadget's parent company. However, Engadget maintains full editorial control, and Verizon will have to pry it from our cold, dead hands.