[mythtv-users] Damn you Time Warner

Michael T. Dean mtdean at thirdcontact.com
Wed Apr 9 01:14:41 UTC 2008

On 04/08/2008 05:17 PM, Greg Oliver wrote:
> DirecTV gets away with it because they are not regulated the same way as
> cable by the  FCC..

True.  (Are regulated, but not in the same way.)

>   There are 0 requirements for them to provide
> locals.

Not any more.  When the satellite carriers decided they wanted to carry
some local channels, they were told /all/ or none.  That was one of the
points in the argument to allow DISH to buy DirecTV.  Doing so would
increase the available capacity of the network, allowing them to carry
all the locals from all the markets.

>   In fact, back in their early days, they could *not* provide
> locals unless you had poor OTA coverage..

Because they didn't /have/ the local channels.  They would offer
non-local feeds of the networks with which the local stations were
affiliated.  Therefore, the local stations saw this as competition (i.e.
we paid a license to broadcast CBS for this area, and the satellite
company wants to allow people in our designated market area to get a CBS
feed that's not ours, so we lose eyes = lose advertising revenue).

So, the satellite company was only allowed to offer these feeds to those
whose reception was worse than class-B reception quality (mine is
class-B reception, and my 16' long antenna can only pick up a CW station
and a /very/ static-y PBS station in analog--all others are so poor you
have to watch for a minute or so before you realize there is a picture
buried in the snow).  However, to add insult to injury, you actually had
to get your local station's permission /before/ the satellite company
could allow you to get those feeds through satellite.  Basically, that
was the FCC's way of having you tell the local station they needed to
increase your reception quality to class-B (unusable, but good enough
for the legislators--who, almost certainly, have cable, so have no idea
how unusable class B is) or write you off as not worth the trouble.

Once the satellite companies start providing the actual local channels
for a market area, people in that area can no longer get the other feed.

> I have yet to find a digital cable box that had menus I like, so I have
> always been satellite since it's inception - that's why I can't wait for
> the component capture devices...

Are the satellite ones any better?  My DISH system used OpenTV (which
was neither Open nor particularly nice).


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