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TV Industry Loses Record Number of Paid Subscribers

The weak economy is hitting Americans where they spend a lot of their free time: at the TV set.

They’re canceling cable and satellite TV subscriptions in record numbers, according to an analysis by The Associated Press of the companies’ quarterly earnings reports.

The U.S. subscription-TV industry first showed a small net loss of subscribers a year ago. This year, that trickle has turned into a stream. The chief cause appears to be persistently high unemployment and a housing market that has many people living with their parents, reducing the need for a separate cable bill.

But it’s also possible that people are canceling cable in favor of cheap Internet video. Such a threat has been hanging over the industry. If that’s the case, viewers can expect more restrictions on online video, as TV companies and Hollywood studios try to make sure that they get paid for what they produce.

Read more at cbsnews.com