There are plenty of people now who think the pay TV companies are nothing but a cabal of greedy arseholes. But you know who hated the cable companies more? Movie theatres and broadcast networks in the 1970s.
Boing Boing's Rob Beschizza writes that the Film and TV power players were paranoid about pay TV eating away at their profits, so they ran a campaign in movie theatres suggesting that "R-rated" shouldn't be allowed in homes. Obviously that paranoia was completely unfounded, as movie theatres are now bigger and as cash-hungry as ever, but you can't say they didn't know how to make an awesome piece of propaganda. [J-Walk via BoingBoing]