Advertisements I'm old enough to remember that the reason you PAID for cable was that you got all these 'commercial free' channels. (Much like satellite radio claims now). Those were the good old days... My neighbors thought I was CRAZY to pay for television. "Why pay for TV when you get it free from an antenna?" they would say. "Cause I get all this specialized programming and no commercials!" I would joyfully explain. They didn't get it....and of course now there are only a handful of basic cable channels that don't have commercials. But all my neighbors now have cable!