ESPN study finds cord cutters, non-cutters neutralizing each other

Taking a break from analyzing who's going to win the NCAA basketball tournament, the folks at ESPN have managed to join with Nielsen and analyze what Americans are doing about their pay TV subscriptions. The result, ESPN said, is that "18/100ths of U.S. households" cut the so-called cord that tethered them to pay TV providers between the fourth quarter of 2010 and first quarter of 2011.

The number's down from what seemed like a small figure in the last ESPN-Nielsen study that found .28 percent of the paying public was slicing the cord. ESPN also created a category of "un-cutters" who, it said, became multichannel TV subscribers during the same period. Coincidentally, .18 percent of homes in the Nielsen sample took that action, resulting in a net zero cord cutting loss.

The minimal incidence of cord cutting is evidence that "the continued growth of broadband penetration and use of online video provides a tremendous opportunity for growth in media consumption across all platforms," said Glenn Enoch, vice president of integrated media research for ESPN in a news release.

For more:
- see this news release

Related articles:
Is cord cutting happening? Maybe; but OTT delivery is the real deal
ESPN, using Nielsen data, says cord-cutting is a 'very minor' nuisance
Verizon's Seidenberg sees cord cutting as cable's undoing

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