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post #121 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Super Eye View Post

May not be right in your mind but it’s perfectly all right as far as I’m concerned. And as long as no one can show me any conviction than I have to assume its perfectly legal as well.

Here's one:

"Howard B. Merker, deputy state's attorney for Baltimore County, said yesterday that Comcast did the groundwork for about 75 theft cases that have been already been prosecuted by his office under a new state cable-theft law that took effect Oct. 1."
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post #122 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 01:42 PM
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Personally, if I cancelled service and still received channels to which I did not subscribe, I'd prosecute the cableco for entrapment.
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post #123 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 03:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wajo View Post

Here's one:

"Howard B. Merker, deputy state's attorney for Baltimore County, said yesterday that Comcast did the groundwork for about 75 theft cases that have been already been prosecuted by his office under a new state cable-theft law that took effect Oct. 1."

Huh? What does any of this have to do with the original OP’s case?
What did the folks do to get prosecuted?

1) Did they climb a pole and physically attach the coax?

2) Did they physically remove any traps from a lock-box?

3) Did they connect an illegal set-top-box to their line?

4) Did they fraudulently set-up an account?

5) Did the receive cable from someone else’s account?

Of course you can get convicted for doing any of the above. However the OP did NOTHING ILLEGAL. The OP simply downgraded his service and gave back his set-top-box. Again, the OP NOTIFIED the cable co to downgrade his service, he did not tamper with anything and did not give any fraudulent information.

You have failed to show even one single conviction for someone who downgraded his service by notification, gave back the cable-box and did not tamper with any traps.

If the cable co audits the OP – he will have a choice of A) start paying to keep receiving the channels or B) let the cable co disconnect/trap the channels he is not subscribed to. If the cable chooses to do nothing – then they cannot have him prosecuted for some make believe crime. What’s so hard to understand here?

I’m still waiting to see a documented conviction for someone who is a subscriber under his real name and address, did not give any fraudulent info, downgraded his service, gave back his cable box and did not tamper with any gear.
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post #124 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 03:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

When you sign up for cable service, you agree to the terms of service of the cableco. You get a document that shows what the service is and what it costs you.

Either you hold up your end of the agreement or not

First of all I can only speak for the TOS I agreed to with my cable co. Nowhere does it state that if I downgrade my service and still receive a channel that I did not subscribe to I must immediately notify them or at the very least change the channel.

Second,
breaking a Terms of Service agreement is not grounds alone for a criminal conviction. Let me give you an example. I could write something right here on AVS that is legal but against the TOS agreement I agreed to when I signed up for an account. You as a moderator could ban me from here on the grounds that I broke the AVS TOS agreement. However as long as I did nothing against the law, you could not have me criminally prosecuted.

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Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

; it does not matter if the cableco legally goes after those who violate the agreement or if anyone has ever been 'convicted' of violating it.

It does to me. Whether I'm breaking the law or not makes a very, very big difference to me.
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post #125 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 05:05 PM
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If an activity is "legal", it has passed society's minimal standard of morality. I'm not familiar with the TOS in particular, but all of the TOS agreements I have read for computer software require compliance at the risk of disabling the software. Cable companies cannot pass laws (they surely would have if they could). The worst a cable company can do is deny service. So the OP, at worst, could lose all service from his company. Of course, if he is in violation of the law, that's different. But if he is not, the burden is really on the cable company. If it shuts down his service, he might have grounds for a lawsuit.
The issue here is right and wrong. If Super Eye or others believe that the OPs behavior is acceptable, they are entitled to that opinion. One can believe that anything "legal" is acceptable. But, keep in mind, a lot of abuse (for example, from banks, or, yes, cable companies) has been "legal".

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post #126 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 05:09 PM
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"it does not matter if the cableco legally goes after those who violate the agreement or if anyone has ever been 'convicted' of violating it."

"It does to me. Whether I'm breaking the law or not makes a very, very big difference to me."

Even if a law has never been enforced, it is still a law. That argument will not win a court case.
So, one can be in violation of a law even if no one has ever been prosecuted for it.

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post #127 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 05:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabboy View Post

Even if a law has never been enforced, it is still a law. That argument will not win a court case.
So, one can be in violation of a law even if no one has ever been prosecuted for it.

That is true but unless someone shows me an actual case with a conviction I have every reason to believe that no such law exists. Surly if 300,000 people are breaking this so-called law at any given time – someone should come up with a single conviction – yet no one has.

crabboy your reasoning has made me look into my own soul. For example, in past posts I have lumped all cable reps into the same “bad” category. I have made a mistake. There are many reasonable folks working for the cable cos. One example is the post by ybsane
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showp...&postcount=104 Judging ybsane by that remark makes me believe that he/she is a very reasonable person whom happens to have worked for a cable co .

crabboy I really thank you for your reasonable contributions to this thread.
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post #128 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 05:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabboy View Post

"it does not matter if the cableco legally goes after those who violate the agreement or if anyone has ever been 'convicted' of violating it."

"It does to me. Whether I'm breaking the law or not makes a very, very big difference to me."

Even if a law has never been enforced, it is still a law. That argument will not win a court case.
So, one can be in violation of a law even if no one has ever been prosecuted for it.

Malice aforethought has to be proven, if this is a case of a trap being installed...!! The Court won't touch it...If this a case needing pictures and malice, guess what...? You won your day in court...The rest need not apply...

As far as the rest of you tarts who go over the speed limit on a daily basis bless your heart.....

All Comments made are my own and not of my employer.
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post #129 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 06:13 PM
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Originally Posted by ybsane View Post


As far as the rest of you tarts who go over the speed limit on a daily basis bless your heart.....

I've never been called a "tart"! I don't know whether to be insulted or thank you!

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post #130 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

When you sign up for cable service, you agree to the terms of service of the cableco. You get a document that shows what the service is and what it costs you.

At any given time I’m receiving a minimum of five channels that I do not subscribe to. These channels are coming via my Motorola DCX-3400-M encrypted cable box.

Right now, this minute I’m receiving / not paying for / not subscribed to: Nowhere in my toss agreement.

1 fishing channel
1 classic movie channel
5 multicultural channels
1 science drama channel
1 ABC specialty channel

That’s nine “free” not subscribed to channels I am getting and yes watching this minute. Next month these channels may get encrypted and 5 to 10 other channels will come in un-encrypted.

Furthermore my clear QAM tuner will randomly lock on at certain channels, they may disappear, reappear at different frequencies.

Is it my obligation to change the channel immediately or look away?
Is it my obligation to contact the cable co and tell them about the channels coming in?
Nope!

Will the feds bust down my door?
Nope!

Am I committing any crime, will I get convicted for anything if I don’t notify the cable co?
Nope!

One more note, the cable co changes around my packages at least once a year. By this I mean they add channels to a tier, delete channels from my tier, without sending me a new TOS stating the channels I’m “allowed” to watch. I need to go look at the website to see current package deals.

You really need to look up the “legal” rights subscribers have and the obligations the cable companies (not subscribers) have.
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post #131 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 06:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ybsane View Post

Malice aforethought has to be proven, if this is a case of a trap being installed...!! The Court won't touch it...If this a case needing pictures and malice, guess what...? You won your day in court...The rest need not apply...

I'm no lawyer (although I watch many on TV), but you've hit on why many laws are not prosecuted. It's really not worth it to our budget-strapped law enforcement departments to establish intent and get proof of same.
In the cablecos case, the threat of prosecution is hoped to be enough.

A relevant parallel is the laws outlawing copying of copyright-protected material. Once in a blue moon we hear about a case being pursued, but the powers that be are not really interested in Joe Schmoe copying a redbox disc.

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post #132 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 06:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crabboy View Post

you've hit on why many laws are not prosecuted. It's really not worth it to our budget-strapped law enforcement departments to establish intent and get proof of same.

On the other hand if the guy is not breaking any law than there is nothing to prosecute and no amount of money would change this fact. That is why no one can come up with a single documented case.

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Originally Posted by crabboy View Post

In the cablecos case, the threat of prosecution is hoped to be enough.

You would think that they could successfully prosecute just one case' to get a real conviction and put some bite into their empty threat.
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post #133 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Super Eye View Post

[You would think that they could successfully prosecute just one case' to get a real conviction and put some bite into their empty threat.

Sometimes just acting like a bully is enough. No wonder Dish and DirectTV run commercials presenting themselves as superior to cable.

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post #134 of 136 Old 04-03-2012, 11:37 PM
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If you "downgrade service" but continue to subscribe to some tv service then it is not theft of service to watch any channels that the cable company fails to trap or encrypt. However if you cancel all tv service then I think it would be considered theft of service to hook up a tv to the line and watch any tv channels via the cable.

In 2007 I got into an argument with a manager of Bright House of Bakersfield at the Kern County Fair. He said that it is unethical to watch clear QAM channels if you only pay for analog service, although he acknowledged that it is legal. He said "you know that you are watching channels that you don't pay for". I am still watching them 4 1/2 years later.

How can we say "the digital transition is complete" when thousands of low power stations are still broadcasting in analog?
LOW POWER ANALOG NEEDS TO DIE NOW!!!
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post #135 of 136 Old 04-04-2012, 05:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Desert Hawk View Post

If you "downgrade service" but continue to subscribe to some tv service then it is not theft of service to watch any channels that the cable company fails to trap or encrypt.

That's what you believe and that's what I believe. Others may think that you and I are both wrong and they will claim that anyone doing the above is breaking the law - although none of them can prove us wrong by quoting a judge in an actual trial with a conviction, on public record.
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Originally Posted by Desert Hawk View Post

However if you cancel all tv service then I think it would be considered theft of service to hook up a tv to the line and watch any tv channels via the cable.

That's what you think? You're entitled to your opinion. However the OP is still subscribing to an active Internet cable feed. I believe it's the cable cos responsibility to trap or encrypt any type of signal in the feed (QAM or analog) they don't want you to have. If they refuse to do so then that's their problem, not the subscriber's. Searching through public trial records I have yet to see one judge prove me wrong by convicting someone in the OP's situation.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Desert Hawk View Post

He [manager of Bright House of Bakersfield] said that it is unethical to watch clear QAM channels if you only pay for analog service, although he acknowledged that it is legal. He said "you know that you are watching channels that you don't pay for". I am still watching them 4 1/2 years later.

How is watching a digital signal when you're subscribing to an analog-only feed any different (legally speaking) from what the OP is doing? You're paying for an analog-only feed yet you're using the digital signals. In fact a cable manager told you that you're using something that you're not paying for. Rightfully the manager told you the truth when he said its not illegal. He knows it's the cable co's responsibly to filter out anything you don't want to pay for piggybacked in your incoming legal feed. I don't care what their ethical opinion is. All I care is what the judge tells me - It's either legal or illegal. If it's illegal show me a real conviction and let's hear it from a judge's mouth and pen.

Until then what anyone thinks is just that, our opinions. How hard can it be to come up with one single case with a judge handing out a guilty verdict and a conviction? Not one documented case and it's illegal? No.
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post #136 of 136 Old 04-04-2012, 07:39 AM
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