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post #10441 of 12058 Old 05-02-2010, 11:34 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Daniel Murray View Post

You are right to a point.
I have had a lot of problems with Comcast in the last 10 years and it is not just me. It is with many people in my town.

General Rule: People have problems with service providers. People will make up things to be upset about, if they cannot find enough of them in evidence. We can see this in how many complaints we see posted online that are people complaining about not getting things that were never promised to them. It's a disease, and it is running rampant through our society.

I recently switched from Comcast to FiOS. I've had more problems dealing with FiOS over the last six months than I had dealing with Comcast over the previous two years. Billing is the worst, but try getting someone on the telephone on the weekend, or overnight... Comcast has people there, and they have almost always been able to help me get what I need done done, even including service changes. FiOS: Wait until Monday morning. And even then I cannot tell you how many times in November and December (especially) I got a recording, during M-F 9-5, that I got the "Sorry our office is closed; please call back during business hours," message calling Verizon.

It doesn't take much to find valid complaints about Time Warner (SDV anyone?), Dish Network (crappy PQ?), and the rest.

So sorry, but I'm not impressed, not in the slightest, by people -- even The Consumerist -- claiming that Comcast is significantly worse in terms of service than anyone else. I think that it's simply a reflection of consumer frustration with not being able to dictate both sides of the deal. Comcast is too big to fight back, because of how badly they are presented by an overly-exploitative, overly-sensationalistic media.

To be fair: Comcast happens to suck worse in your part of the country than practically anywhere else. However, recognize that if anyone else was operating the cable infrastructure that is in your area, you're as likely to receive similarly sucky service from them.
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post #10442 of 12058 Old 05-02-2010, 03:54 PM
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bicker1,
I hear what you are saying. But Why can a company this big can not fix a broken system or tell the people who are paying full rates why they are having the on going problems and what they are going to do about them. In my town meeting they said very little and just listen to us. If you buy a new car and have on going problems and the car company can not get it fixed you can get lemon law involved. But Who do we have on are side? I have called Burlington County Consumer affairs about this and they know all about the system problems from other people calling. But they can do nothing because there is no law for this.
Yes I do know there is no perfect system with Comcast, Dircetv, Dish, TW, Fios and so on. But why can't Comcast try to fix the Garden State system that is broke. Every time I talk to a Comcast Service Person or a Comcast Rep. They tell me they Do not know why the system is not getting fixed.
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post #10443 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 03:22 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Daniel Murray View Post

I hear what you are saying. But Why can a company this big

Let me stop you right there. The size of a company is relatively meaningless in this context. Companies of all sizes, from Geppetto by himself crafting a carving, to the largest conglomerates, are responsible for three things: following the law, living up to the explicit promises they make, and serving the best long-term interests of their owners.

Many people blind themselves to the reality of the world by thinking that large companies are in some way obligated to provide more or better service than small companies. In many ways, the opposite is true: Large companies, by virtue of their size, are more readily trustworthy, since where are they going to hide? By contrast, you can only grant smaller companies that kind of trust if you come to know them, or understand how they are rooted to their community.

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can not fix a broken system

I don't want to misinterpret what you're asking, so please clarify: What part(s) of the explicit promises they've made to you, specifically, have been broken? Please quote the explicit promise, precisely, and then outline the facts of the situation that you feel constitute the breaking of that promise. Be sure, if you're going to highlight a portion of their promise, to include the portions of their promise that indicate a promise of perfection, if you mean to imply that they've promised something to be perfect.

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or tell the people who are paying full rates why...

One of the things I've learned as I've gotten older is that, in situations such as you describe, telling people "why" is a pretty worthless, and sometimes counter-productive, gesture. Telling people "why" is a great tool for teaching people, but in the context you're talking about, no one is really interested in learning. It isn't about education. What it is often about is anger and frustration, and trying to teach something to someone who is not interested in learning, and is angry about things not being exactly the way they want them to be, typically will just make matters worse.

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Originally Posted by Daniel Murray View Post

they are having the on going problems and what they are going to do about them.

Again: I don't want to misinterpret what you're asking, so please clarify: What part(s) of the explicit promises they've made to you, specifically, have been "broken"? Please quote the explicit promise, precisely, and then outline the facts of the situation that you feel constitute the breaking of that promise.

Your specific situation, if I recall correctly, is that you're in an area where the cable infrastructure is both very old (and therefore with lesser capability and lower reliability than the rest of us enjoy) and expensive to upgrade (with perhaps a very low potential for ROI as compared to other things the company can do with that money). You expect things that you're not getting because of these realities, but (and this is the important part) you have never been explicitly promised those things. Your expectations are unfounded. As a result, they don't necessarily need to do anything about them. What will make it necessary for the company to do something about them is either (1) they explicitly promise to do so, or (2) doing so becomes the very best possible investment for the money needed to do so.

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In my town meeting they said very little and just listen to us.

That is exactly what customer service agents in all industries are trained to do with unreasonably irate customers.

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Originally Posted by Daniel Murray View Post

If you buy a new car and have on going problems and the car company can not get it fixed you can get lemon law involved.

Very bad analogy because (1) you haven't bought a product -- you're subscribing to a service; (2) unlike with the lemon-car, the service being provided to you generally complies with what the company has promised to provide.

That's not to say that you don't experience outages or other situations that are failures of the service. Keep in mind that no company promises a service free of failures. When (actual) problems occur, report them, and the company will fix them in accordance with their promises. The point here is to differentiate actual failures of the service from all the unfounded expectations that you and your neighbors and your town council have chosen to mix together with what the company actually has promised.
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post #10444 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 09:14 AM
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Morac, We have not seen any new HD Channels in over a year. They have taken away channels in the last year and put nothing in there places.
We only have 34 HD channels not counting the pay channels.
We probably pay the same amount for Comcast and you get More! The Garden State Systems gets Less!
I was told we would get more Channels in May. But now I get told we would not see any until some time in 2011.
I am getting very close to dropping Comcast!
I do wish Fios would get in my town!

Don't bother waiting for FIOS as they aren't deploying to any more towns at the moment, so unless you see them laying down wires on polls or digging up lawns, you won't be getting FIOS any time soon.

There's someone at my work place who is in the GSS and he has the same complaints as you (same price for half the channels). Unfortunately there's not much that can be done about that. You can try calling Comcast and see if you can get a price reduction. They may or may not do so though.
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post #10445 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 09:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Daniel Murray View Post

You are right to a point.
I have had a lot of problems with Comcast in the last 10 years and it is not just me. It is with many people in my town. If I am paying good money for a service Do not give me Crap! Do not cut back Channels and give nothing in return! Do not raise my rates when you can not make a broken system work! SO ON

Thanks for letting Me Vent,
Daniel

Daniel, we feel your pain. We're very long term cable subs back before TWC and Comcast bought up all the smaller systems. Obviously, both organizations have outgrown their ability to provide really good service; however, I do see Comcast working hard to catch up...at least in our area (Houston, TX).

All your gripes are legit...costs too much, has flaky system ops software. We had TWC before they and Comcast swapped Dallas and Houston. Now my sister in Dallas complains about TWC.

In Houston, we have a mostly Cisco/SA system, with a Motorola overlay to cover many Moto boxes still in service. We've not yet experienced the all digital changeover, probably because of the dual system overlay. Also, Comcast spent all the $$ and promoted the bejesus out of their 3D Masters coverage; however, they failed to work with any local dealers or their own storefronts to demonstrate the 3D format. Simply an amazing lack of follow through on their part...and the local dealers.

I keep exploring the sat providers, but most of our friends who have had them are changing back to Comcast. Right now...the devil I know is easier to deal with than a whole new set of maladroits. At least I have the email and phone #'s of several of the top execs at the local Comcast division, along with one of their senior engineers.

Regards!
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post #10446 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 10:10 AM
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Comcast has developed a Master Channel Lineup (MCLU) that will be deployed across the country over the next year or so. All channels will be grouped by genre.

- 99 and Below: Will remain the same with channel numbers decided by the local market. All channels in this range will be replicated in higher channel numbers.

- 100's: News, Local, and Public Service, Educational, Government.

- 200's: General Entertainment and Lifestyle cable channels (FX, TNT, Discovery, etc)

- 300's: General Entertainment and Lifestyle cable channels (Lifetime, A&E, TLC, shopping channels etc)

- 400's: Music Channels

- 500's: Kids and Religious channels

- 600's and 700's: Sports

- 800's: Movies and PPV

- 900's: Premium channels

- HD channels will move to the 1000's with the same channel number as the SD version + 1000.

- International Channels will be in the 2000's.


A few systems in Indiana will test the new lineup in June. Probably in Tuscon and Salt Lake City, too.

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post #10447 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 10:21 AM
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200 available channels for sports? Is Comcast anticipating a huge influx of new sports channels, or maybe even having a MLBEI HD offering, finally?
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post #10448 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 10:28 AM
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200 available channels for sports? Is Comcast anticipating a huge influx of new sports channels, or maybe even having a MLBEI HD offering, finally?

Sounds like reasonable speculation to me, but I really don't know one way or the other.

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post #10449 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 10:49 AM
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yes it's about time Comcast did this!
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post #10450 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 11:25 AM
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Sounds like reasonable speculation to me, but I really don't know one way or the other.

Yes, but the problem is that they still need the physical bandwidth. I think SDV will provide what's needed for a full-bore MLBEI-HD package ala DIRECTV, I don't see it happening with linear channels, there's simply not enough bandwidth.
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post #10451 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

Sounds like reasonable speculation to me, but I really don't know one way or the other.

MLB EI, NHL Center Ice and NBA Ticket could take about 50 of those if they make them all HD (or more if they offer both the home and away feeds for each game).
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post #10452 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 12:08 PM
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200 available channels for sports? Is Comcast anticipating a huge influx of new sports channels, or maybe even having a MLBEI HD offering, finally?

Maybe finally joining the 21st century and offering out-of-market RSNs like satellite and telco? That's one of my biggest hangups with switching back to cable when my E* contract is up.
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post #10453 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 12:52 PM
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Maybe finally joining the 21st century and offering out-of-market RSNs like satellite and telco? That's one of my biggest hangups with switching back to cable when my E* contract is up.

We can hope, although as it appears Comcast is not expanding the physical bandwidth in their systems anymore, beyond what they are currently(if you're 750MHz, you'll stay 750MHz), SDV would seem to be the answer, especially for that sort of programming, seems tailor-made for it in fact. SDV, while it appears to have it's issues, is a whole lot more attractive than going to a 4-per QAM, or more, solution - which Comcast has been looking at.
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post #10454 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 02:05 PM
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Thank you guys for hearing me out.

bicker1,
The broken system We have. This is what Comcast has said to us in are town meeting. We have a bad Noid I think it is called The main trunk and Box that Comcast send to the sounding towns. They know it is Bad. They tell us it is bad but it will cost 2 million plus dollars to fix and they are not looking to spend that money to fix it. We also have a bad main line in the street and they also said they will not fix it to much money.
Most amplifiers that send the Cable wire to our houses are going bad they are old. to much money again. They also said are feed on a good day might be 400MHz.
So that is what Bad on my Garden State system.
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post #10455 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

Comcast has developed a Master Channel Lineup (MCLU) that will be deployed across the country over the next year or so. All channels will be grouped by genre.

- HD channels will move to the 1000's with the same channel number as the SD version + 1000.

-

A few systems in Indiana will test the new lineup in June. Perhaps in Tuscon and Salt Lake City, also.

shouldn't it be the other way around

for example HBO-HD would be 900 with HBO-SD being 1900
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post #10456 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

- HD channels will move to the 1000's with the same channel number as the SD version + 1000.

Let's hope this includes an "auto tune to the HD version" function if you are on an HD box.

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post #10457 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 03:23 PM
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Let's hope this includes an "auto tune to the HD version" function if you are on an HD box.

It's not auto tune.

The new guide has a 'Watch in HD' function on the Info banner. If you're on an SD channel that is also available in HD, you simply push the 'OK' button, and it takes you to the HD channel.

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post #10458 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 03:41 PM
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I wonder if they are going to repackage via genre instead of the mishmash they have now? Do what people have mentioned that ExpressVu in Canada does.
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post #10459 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 03:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Daniel Murray View Post

The broken system We have.

So Comcast informs you that it is too expensive to upgrade to improve the reliability and capability of the cable infrastructure. What is your town willing to do to financially motivate some other supplier to agree to come in invest the millions of dollars necessary, when the time comes to renew the franchise agreement? What is your town willing to do now to financially motivate some other supplier to come in and invest the millions of dollars necessary to overlay Comcast's network? If the answer is nothing or some other equivocation that avoids your town doing anything significant to change the situation, then your town has paved the way for the less reliable, less capable cable system to continue operating as such into the future.

Some of the northern New England states are like this. People complain about the way things are but they're unwilling to do anything themselves to make it better. They want someone else to incur the cost of making things better for them, without any justification for that expectation.
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post #10460 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 04:17 PM
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Oh, the agony of having to enter four digits!

I don't even remember the SD channel numbers any more. At least that gives room for well over 100 HD channels eventually. (Sunday Ticket in 2014?)

Had some four-digit channels in the guide for a while but couldn't view them.

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post #10461 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by bicker1 View Post

So Comcast informs you that it is too expensive to upgrade to improve the reliability and capability of the cable infrastructure. What is your town willing to do to financially motivate some other supplier to agree to come in invest the millions of dollars necessary, when the time comes to renew the franchise agreement? What is your town willing to do now to financially motivate some other supplier to come in and invest the millions of dollars necessary to overlay Comcast's network? If the answer is nothing or some other equivocation that avoids your town doing anything significant to change the situation, then your town has paved the way for the less reliable, less capable cable system to continue operating as such into the future.

Some of the northern New England states are like this. People complain about the way things are but they're unwilling to do anything themselves to make it better. They want someone else to incur the cost of making things better for them, without any justification for that expectation.

Fios started to do line work last summer on the polls. All they need to do is to come into the neighborhood. Easier said than done. Inside each neighborhood all the utilities are under ground. I am going to my town office this week to find out more on this with Fios.
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post #10462 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 06:41 PM
 
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Good luck. If you feel really strongly about this, you should really apply pressure on your representatives to do what is necessary to get you another option.
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post #10463 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 07:00 PM
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Bicker1,
Thank you for all your input.
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post #10464 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by chitchatjf View Post

shouldn't it be the other way around

for example HBO-HD would be 900 with HBO-SD being 1900

???

Ken H said that the HDs will be in the 1000s, so SD HBO will be 900. HD HBO will be 1900....
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post #10465 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 09:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Ken H View Post

Comcast has developed a Master Channel Lineup (MCLU) that will be deployed across the country over the next year or so. All channels will be grouped by genre.

- 99 and Below: Will remain the same with channel numbers decided by the local market. All channels in this range will be replicated in higher channel numbers.

- 100's: News, Local, and Public Service, Educational, Government.

- 200's: General Entertainment and Lifestyle cable channels (FX, TNT, Discovery, etc)

- 300's: General Entertainment and Lifestyle cable channels (Lifetime, A&E, TLC, shopping channels etc)

- 400's: Music Channels

- 500's: Kids and Religious channels

- 600's and 700's: Sports

- 800's: Movies and PPV

- 900's: Premium channels

- HD channels will move to the 1000's with the same channel number as the SD version + 1000.

- International Channels will be in the 2000's.


A few systems in Indiana will test the new lineup in June. Probably in Tuscon and Salt Lake City, too.

Will RSN's say in the local range?

Will part time over flows get fixed channle numbers and not shear channels any more?

What will Chicago area do CSN + sd uses cltv (hold over from the analog days and FSN days) And CSN + HD uses info HD (looping help videos) used to be MOJO HD?

Will they add CLTV HD? make CSN + have it's own channle / info sd? CSN + needs to be on the dta's. Why is it missing there?

Where will HD only channels fit in full time ones?

Part time HD only channels stuff like PPV HD (events) PPV HD 2 (events) game 1 HD (sports) game 2 HD (sports) team HD (sports)?
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post #10466 of 12058 Old 05-03-2010, 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by keenan View Post

Yes, but the problem is that they still need the physical bandwidth. I think SDV will provide what's needed for a full-bore MLBEI-HD package ala DIRECTV, I don't see it happening with linear channels, there's simply not enough bandwidth.

in demand just added game 2 HD and they are a long way from doing any near direct level of sports pack HD and with the high number of black outs. On directv the rsn are remapped to the sports pack numbers.

And If comcast can even do some thing like have SD and HD on same numbers. How do thing they will be to have the RSN in the guide just have them trun off then have a other number that the out of market people will have to tune to if they have MLB , NHL, NBA packs.

Also Comcast as said they want NFL ST but where is the bandwidth for 12-15 part time HD channels?
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post #10467 of 12058 Old 05-04-2010, 03:31 AM
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Originally Posted by cjh404 View Post

???

Ken H said that the HDs will be in the 1000s, so SD HBO will be 900. HD HBO will be 1900....

It should still be the other way around with Hd as the primary channel
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post #10468 of 12058 Old 05-04-2010, 03:51 AM
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bicker1,
I hear what you are saying. But Why can a company this big can not fix a broken system or tell the people who are paying full rates why they are having the on going problems and what they are going to do about them. In my town meeting they said very little and just listen to us. If you buy a new car and have on going problems and the car company can not get it fixed you can get lemon law involved. But Who do we have on are side? I have called Burlington County Consumer affairs about this and they know all about the system problems from other people calling. But they can do nothing because there is no law for this.
Yes I do know there is no perfect system with Comcast, Dircetv, Dish, TW, Fios and so on. But why can't Comcast try to fix the Garden State system that is broke. Every time I talk to a Comcast Service Person or a Comcast Rep. They tell me they Do not know why the system is not getting fixed.

I had cable tv at one time through Sammons/Patriot Cable (since acquired by Comcast). The service was pretty bad with an extremely limited of channels and very little HD. Since the acquisition Comcast has upgraded the systems and added more HD but they still suffer in comparison to Dish and Directv. I've had Directv since 1996; had Dish for 6 years - since dropped and got rid of Comcast cable in 2009.

I really like Directv - They have all the out of market sports packages (NFL Sunday Ticket, MLB EI, League Pass, Cricket Pass, Mega Madness...etc.), movies, news channels and local programming I want. I could care less about the other crap channels found on cable & satellite - Tru TV, Spike, TNT, AMC, WE, etc., those channels all have an endless cycle of 10 minutes of programming followed by 8 minutes of the worst commercials in history then back to 5 minutes of programming.
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post #10469 of 12058 Old 05-04-2010, 04:29 AM
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A few systems in Indiana will test the new lineup in June. Probably in Tuscon and Salt Lake City, too.

do you know what systems in Indiana will test the lineup in June?
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post #10470 of 12058 Old 05-04-2010, 05:51 AM
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Bicker1,
Thank you for all your input.

If there is a franchise agreement in your town, then there is liable to be a commission of appointed (by local government) members who are supposed to be responsible for its enforcement. I would start talking to them. I would demand to see the franchise agreement (which should be a public document), and study it carefully. There may be grounds in there for local government to bring legal action at least on reliability issues if not capacity issues. If as many of the parts of that system are breaking down as you indicate, their reliability record might be being impacted enough to be actionable.

Most cable commissions are pretty cosy with the provider. When things are going relatively well, that's not such a problem. When things aren't, some cages need rattling to remind them the public is watching, and cares. All politicians will respond to public pressure if enough of it is brought. The meetings of that commission should also be public. Start showing up at them. Bring a few like-minded friends. Be polite, but insistent.

It certainly wouldn't hurt if the town was willing to chip in where it made sense for the city to do so. Of the items you mention, the obvious one would be to offer to pay for the work needing done on Main street. When the City squawks, citizens could remind them that they've had a franchise fee revenue stream all along, and it would be entirely appropriate to use revenues from that fee to help maintain the system in reasonable ways that the city has the expertise to do (the city may be no good at nodes, but surely they know all about tearing up streets!).

It all comes down to how much you care, and how much time you put into it. Heck, you might find yourself as a member of that commission eventually.
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