NEW YORK - Cable companies have been losing TV subscribers at an ever faster rate in the last few months, and satellite TV isn't picking up the slack.
That could be a sign that Internet TV services such as Netflix and Hulu are getting people to cancel cable, though company executives are pointing to the weak economy and housing market for now.
Third-quarter results reported by major cable TV companies show major losses, but don't settle the question of what's causing them.
If "cord-cutting" in favor of Internet video is finally taking hold, that has wide-ranging implications.
Consumers who use the Internet to get their movies and TV shows bypass not just the cable companies, but the cable networks that produce the content.
The move could have the same disruptive effect on the TV and movie industries as digital downloads have already had on music.
The CEO of phone company Verizon Communications recently likened cord-cutting to what started happening to the local-phone companies five or six years ago, when people started giving up their landlines in favor of relying solely on their cell phones.
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