[mythtv-users] CableCards to Become Useless ???

Ronald Frazier ron at ronfrazier.net
Mon Apr 21 14:19:41 UTC 2008

>  > I don't get the point of having a cable card inserted in your stb?
> The FCC, realizing that the cable
>  companies were delaying, set repeated deadlines (which the cable
>  companies missed), put forth a final requirement that the cable
>  companies themselves had to use CableCard as an incentive to make it
>  work.

I think another reason was to ensure that the systems were actually
cable card compliant.

As an analogy (and perhaps not the best one), think of a company that
makes a piece of hardware that they say is linux compatible, but they
don't actively support under linux. You may run into instances where
the hardware kind of works, but not as well as it does under windows.
Now, if you could mandate that the company has half of their
employee's using linux, you could bet that any of those
incompatibilities would get worked out relatively quickly,  because
otherwise it would prevent them from running the company at full

With the STB's running cablecards, if their cablecard support isn't
rock solid, and their own STBs are messing up, they'll have nobody
else to point the finger at. That will quickly hurt their bottom line,
and they'll be quick to fix it. However, if their STBs didn't have to
run cablecards, they could always say "well, it works with the STB, so
your cablecard device must be buggy", and most consumers would be none
the wiser. Half of them would just switch to the cable company's STB
to avoid the problem. The rest would complain to the manufacturer,
then most would give up when the manufacturer points the finger back
at the cable company and switch to the STB. End result is, the cable
company make extra money renting STBs and actually has an incentive to
NOT fix their cablecard support.


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