Hey Time Warner: Left hand, meet right hand

So just days after the news broke that Time Warner was getting ready to test a pay-for-pipe rate plan for Road Runner customers, HBO announced that it would start making some of its shows available to subscribers via the Web for free. (Henry Blodgett, for one, is convinced the new service will fail.

So just days after the news broke that Time Warner was getting ready to test a pay-for-pipe rate plan for Road Runner customers, HBO announced that it would start making some of its shows available to subscribers via the Web for free. (Henry Blodgett, for one, is convinced the new service will fail.)

So let's just make sure we've got this right... HBO subscribers will be able to download HBO programs for free, and those same downloads could end up meaning  far higher monthly bills for Road Runner subscribers?

While I would like to think this is sheer brilliance on the part of a major media conglomerate, I suspect that it's far more likely that nobody internally actually connected the dots on this one. Come on, if they were this smart enough do this, wouldn't they developed a plan to make AOL relevant again by now?

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