Why Jon Steinberg Thinks The Post-Cable Network Switchover Will Accelerate In The Next 2 Years

Why Jon Steinberg Thinks The Post-Cable Network Switchover Will Accelerate In The Next 2 Years

We had been looking for a category name to define us for weeks.

In the time since we invented the term “Post Cable Network” (PCN), venture capital inboxes have been filled with PCN pitches.

Our expectations for capturing a budding category have clearly been exceeded.

From Medium. Article by Jon Steinberg, CEO and founder of Cheddar.com, an on-demand video news network focused on covering innovative products, technologies, and services. With a live approach to news in technology, media, and entertainment, Cheddar is broadcast daily from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, with CEO and founder interviews and profiles.

A lot of people tell me they want to make a PCN (post-cable network) for sports — an ESPN killer. I think Barstool has a lead here, and CBS plans to introduce one as well. With that said, we are increasingly seeing live sports and news as the key formats that require tune-in based channels.


News and sports are the key PCN candidates, but I am starting to think that food/home/culture can have a PCN as well — a sort of millennial mashup of Food Network and HGTV. We are actually working on that for our second or third PCN that we will launch on 2018. My dream would be to do a live Tiny House renovation.

The past three weeks have been one of the most dramatically negative periods for incumbent media and consequentially opportunity opening periods for new entrants.

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We are seeing cord-nevering and cord-cutting ramp so rapidly that ad forecasts have been taken down and the road to 80 million non-cord-people is now on the horizon:


Comcast pre-announced a loss of 100,000 to 150,000 video subscribers (the floods only explain a portion of these losses), 5 major magazine editors how now retired, and even NFL ratings were down substantially (14%) for the first week.

Some of the incumbent cable channels will make their way to this new world. Just as incumbent print newspapers like The New York Times and The Washington Post built leading websites, many cable channels will “cross the chasm” to becoming PCNs.

Cable systems like Comcast and skinny bundles like Sling are increasingly recognizing they don’t need to give in to the high priced demands of cable networks and can substitute in PCNs. The first wave of these negotiations resulting in dumping of incumbents will likely happen in the next 12–24 months. The cable systems (MVPDs) are realizing that as long as they provide good broadband, every channel is substitutable or droppable.

Read more at Medium.