I've worked in the communications industry for a friggin long time! I have pretty much figured out (sith a small amount of inside information) why TV service providers put together their lineups the way they do, it really all has to do with...money! Yep, that's right; it's the money they make/spend with the networks/channels/broadcast providers they deal with. Obviously, the process is designed to make it practical for all of the above to get the best value for their product, and everyone wants to make as much as they can because they all answer to...shareholders!
The thing that strikes me as odd is why these providers are not more proactive in offering custom programming. There is ample argument that providing package deals is the simplest for the providers. For the most part, the general public will pretty much accept whatever they can get on a package deal. Unfortunately, one size doesn't really fit all, which is why the average Joe will jump ship as soon as they can get a better offer from a competitor. The other thing that will benefit the industry as a result is the ability to taylor programming to match the customers needs/wants/desires in viewing.
My opinion is, and I've stated this to someone at Verizon before, the first provider that takes the bold step to offer selectable packages for programming will be the one who will see a significant rise in two things: 1. customer satisfaction and 2. Customer loyalty. Think about it, if you can decide which channels you want to see wouldn't that be a selling point? It is for me. I might even be willing to pay a bit extra for the choice. I'm not a big sports fan personally (sorry, my man card was all full up before I acquired that particular interest) but I do have certain sports I enjoy. To that end, I don't really need full access to the 24/7 Cricket channel, although I am sure there are many who do! I wouldn't mind seeing some MLL games since my nephew is now a professional Lacrosse player.
Verizon needs to step up their release of selectable TV programming. Sooner they do that, the more likely I won't jump ship after my contract expiration date!