Recent moves by Verizon Communications and Cablevision demonstrate that Verizon's FiOS TV and the cable company share a similar dislike of programmers pushing unwanted channels onto pay-TV companies and their subscribers. Verizon wants to pay networks based on their actual viewership, while Cablevision has sued Viacom for forcing the operator to take lower-rated networks along with more popular ones. Consumer advocates hope the moves lead to full scale a la carte pay-TV pricing, but programmers say such a policy would force many niche services off the air.

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