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post #451 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:17 PM
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Originally posted by CPanther95
....and what's a fair charge for the local broadcaster to demand for it's investment in "infrastructure & maintenance" to bring HDTV to your city - above and beyond the expense of going digital which was mandated?

For all Sinclair's whining about infrastructure investment (documentation, remember: http://www.sbgi.net/misc/cable_resale_local_tv.pdf), they just doubled the dividend on their common stock, an apparent desperate, and so far unsuccessful, attempt to boost their languishing stock price. With ~45mm shareholders, that's $4.5mm/yr just gone, they're saying they have nothing better to do with the cash, such as boost the power in their underpowered stations, or even retire their high yield debt.

The best judge of their business model is their stock price...enough said.
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post #452 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:21 PM
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Originally posted by foxeng
As I type I have FOX HD OTA on right now and from a low power FOX at that 23 miles away and other than cost of the antenna which I paid for 3 years ago, it hasn't cost me ONE CENT to watch FOX in HD, ABC in HD, NBC in HD or CBS in HD. How much have you paid on cable in the last three years and not seen FOX HD? How much money has your cable company made off of you for the same program material you could be watching for free right now?

Why should your cable company be making money off of you when they do not pay ONE CENT to the station to provide (or in this case to NOT provide) that service to you. That is the Sinclair argument.

You brought it up. Eh, you were saying?

I didn't get HD from Comcast solely for Fox HD. Obviously, because they didn't have it when I signed up. In fact, at the time the lousy Sinclair station here didn't even broadcast HD, or even "Faux Widescreen," just a low-power crappy 480i signal to comply with the law. Maybe if they had a better HD product OTA when I was deciding how to obtain HD content it would have persuaded me differently - but we're talking Sinclair here. Most of the others locals were already offered though. NBC (Cox) was recently added too, although that one isn't such a big deal to me.

Tell me, how is your ESPN-HD, DiscoveryHD, INHD, etc., coming in out there OTA? Eh, you were saying? Oh, you don't get those OTA?

See, while the local HD channels are important, I wanted more than just them. Meaning that if I went OTA to get the locals I would also need satellite HD for ESPN. Oh, but that would require a big initial outlay of $$, especially if I want the DVR. Which I do want, since I am rarely able to watch the programs I want to see when they are aired.

The day may indeed come where DirecTV or somebody else has the right package that will entice me to go Satellite/OTA. I am not opposed to the concept. They could start by offering an affordable DVR solution. But in the meantime paying the dirty cable company is my best solution. I really don't care if they don't pay one cent for the programming but charge me (a small amount) for it. They are giving me the means to see it. I really don't care if they pay Sinclair for it as long as they don't raise my rates any more. Problem is that would be bound to happen if they have to start paying all the stations.
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post #453 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:21 PM
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Originally posted by aldujaparov
For all Sinclair's whining about infrastructure investment (documentation, remember: http://www.sbgi.net/misc/cable_resale_local_tv.pdf), they just doubled the dividend on their common stock, an apparent desperate, and so far unsuccessful, attempt to boost their languishing stock price. With ~45mm shareholders, that's $4.5mm/yr just gone, they're saying they have nothing better to do with the cash, such as boost the power in their underpowered stations, or even retire their high yield debt.

The best judge of their business model is their stock price...enough said.

So your answer is the 700 local broadcasters who have spent the money to voluntarily upgrade to HD have no right to offset that expense through companies who want to get that signal and sell it for a profit?

Because Sinclair paid a dividend, all broadcasters are just "making up" the fact that it costs money to upgrade from Digital to HDTV
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post #454 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:23 PM
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Originally posted by aldujaparov
For all Sinclair's whining about infrastructure investment (documentation, remember: http://www.sbgi.net/misc/cable_resale_local_tv.pdf), they just doubled the dividend on their common stock, an apparent desperate, and so far unsuccessful, attempt to boost their languishing stock price. With ~45mm shareholders, that's $4.5mm/yr just gone, they're saying they have nothing better to do with the cash, such as boost the power in their underpowered stations, or even retire their high yield debt.

The best judge of their business model is their stock price...enough said.

But you didn't answer his question. The issue isn't stock prices. The issue is fair market value for their product and Sinclair feels they are not getting fair market value. How do you respond to that?

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post #455 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:24 PM
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Originally posted by hondo21
But in the meantime paying the dirty cable company is my best solution.............as long as they don't raise my rates any more.

How's that been working out for ya?
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post #456 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:24 PM
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Originally posted by keenan
That's not really true now is it? There is some give and take between the station and the cableco in the form of advertising and such...

Stations have always been able to ask for compensation in many forms, including cash. In some markets, stations do get cash, others is trade of air time or compensation.

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post #457 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:25 PM
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Originally posted by CPanther95
....and what's a fair charge for the local broadcaster to demand for it's investment in "infrastructure & maintenance" to bring HDTV to your city - above and beyond the expense of going digital which was mandated?

as I said before (I wonder what happened to it?), what their advertisers pay them
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post #458 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:27 PM
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Originally posted by foxeng
As I type I have FOX HD OTA on right now and from a low power FOX at that 23 miles away and other than cost of the antenna which I paid for 3 years ago, it hasn't cost me ONE CENT to watch FOX in HD, ABC in HD, NBC in HD or CBS in HD.

I know some people who get FOX Greensboro OTA. They say it's free, and it's almost worth every penny.
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post #459 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:28 PM
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Originally posted by aldujaparov
as I said before (I wonder what happened to it?), what their advertisers pay them

How about FX? That is a advertiser based business just like broadcasters and the cable companies PAY FOX to carry it. What is the difference between it and a OTA station? They both have advertisers, they both have infrastructure, cable wants to carry them both.

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post #460 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:29 PM
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Originally posted by CPanther95
I know some people who get FOX Greensboro OTA. They say it's free, and it's almost worth every penny.

Same can be said for FOX Charlotte!

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post #461 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:30 PM
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Originally posted by aldujaparov
as I said before (I wonder what happened to it?), what their advertisers pay them

No posts were edited or deleted.

So, if Coke pays to put their logo on a jacket, I should be able to get those jackets for free and sell them?
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post #462 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by j_buckingham80
Well, I've got nothing personal against Cable cos, I'm just cheap!

Just like I have nothing personal against broadcasters. And I'm not a cable fan either, just a guy who watches TV and has seen the cost go up and up, and now companies like Sinclair want to raise the price some more. My question is why for the last 50 yrs the broadcasters have seemed to conduct a business profitable enough to stay solvent, but now, they feel they need to charge for that signal in the manner Sinclair wants to.

My guess is that Sinclair never liked being forced into the ATSC standard in the first place and now they are trying to leverage the cablecos into covering the start-up costs and maintenance costs to provide something they never wanted to in the first place.

I really have no horse in this race, but the bottom line is that if Sinclair gets their way, EVERYONE of us will be paying more for our TV.
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post #463 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:32 PM
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Originally posted by CPanther95
So your answer is the 700 local broadcasters who have spent the money to voluntarily upgrade to HD have no right to offset that expense through companies who want to get that signal and sell it for a profit?

Because Sinclair paid a dividend, all broadcasters are just "making up" the fact that it costs money to upgrade from Digital to HDTV

Please reread my statement; your response is nonsensical.
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post #464 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:35 PM
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Originally posted by CPanther95
How's that been working out for ya?

Yeah, well constantly rising overall cable rates is one of those things I was referring to that I don't like about the cableco. But DBS raises their rates too, so if you want the ESPNs, etc., what are you going to do.

What I was referring to was I don't want them raising my rates even more as a result of caving in to Sinclair and starting the domino effect of paying all the locals for their HD signals. I know that would make a lot of you guys happy, to have the local broadcasters taking in all that loot from us sap cable subs, but if you somehow feel that is going to improve their programming or your OTA experience I think you're sadly mistaken. That money would likely go straight to the Sinclair political lobbying slush funds and the like.
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post #465 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:35 PM
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Originally posted by foxeng
How about FX? That is a advertiser based business just like broadcasters and the cable companies PAY FOX to carry it. What is the difference between it and a OTA station?

The difference is that the FCC says if you want that license to broadcast OTA, it will be free. You can't stick up an antenna and get FX.
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post #466 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:36 PM
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Originally posted by foxeng
As I type I have FOX HD OTA on right now and from a low power FOX at that 23 miles away and other than cost of the antenna which I paid for 3 years ago, it hasn't cost me ONE CENT to watch FOX in HD, ABC in HD, NBC in HD or CBS in HD. How much have you paid on cable in the last three years and not seen FOX HD? How much money has your cable company made off of you for the same program material you could be watching for free right now?

Why should your cable company be making money off of you when they do not pay ONE CENT to the station to provide (or in this case to NOT provide) that service to you. That is the Sinclair argument.

You brought it up. Eh, you were saying?

No one is forcing me to pay cable for TV viewing. In fact years ago I only had OTA, then HDTV came and I did not want to pay for a $500 OTA HD box, so I installed DBS (free E* 811), only recently switched to Comcast because they had HDDVR now for $10/mo.

Compared to $250 for an OTA HD box, or $1,000 for an OTA or DBS HDDVR, I'd gladly let Comcast rip me off on their HDDVR for $10/mo.

So let's not play the fairness card folks, it does not work here. Because in strict fariness, since twice as many people are watching FOX American Idol as those who watch ESPN, Sinclair should charge cable and DBS $6.00 to carry their FOX stations, but they only asked for $0.50. How would you explain why they short-changed themselves by so much? Please don't tell me they believe in serving the public good.

If today Comcast suddenly loses ESPN, they will lose subs to DBS by the thousands, but they don't lose much if FOX HD signals are not carried, not yet. Now if they lose FOX SD signals, that will be a different matter.

It means any given HD local signal does not have nearly as much value as its SD counterpart at this time, and no cable will be willing to pay for something of lessor value while they already have pretty mcuh the same thing for free. Start demending cable to pay for its SD OTA signals, now that at least fits the punishment to the crime.
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post #467 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:38 PM
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Originally posted by aldujaparov
Please reread my statement; your response is nonsensical.

I thought your "statement" was responding to my question since you had quoted me. I've re-read it and still not sure what your point is, it certainly has nothing to do with the question posed.
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post #468 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:39 PM
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Well....not everyone, (gulp) only the Cable customers who have been able to get something (the Broadcasters programming) cheaper than the current market forces allow (or so Sinclair suggests). I don't see it so much as Sinclair wanting to raise the price, as much as Sinclair wants to jump in on the gravy train...and who doesn't?

I guess my question is...Do people here, supporting the cable cos or not, really think the ATSC standard has changed nothing in the respective bargaining positions of Cable vs. Broadcasters? I tend to think it has precisely because broadcasters need cable less than they did with NTSC (again because of the crystal clear signal and some other issues).

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post #469 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:40 PM
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Originally posted by raidbuck
Plus not everyone can get OTA. That is always ignored by those who are promoting OTA.

Rich N.

Couldn't agree more.

This needs to be tattooed on everyone's head when they talk about OTA.

Man, this thread is moving too fast for me, besides, the Oscars in HD is starting, provided to me by my local cable company at no extra cost beyond what I pay for the SD channels...
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post #470 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:42 PM
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Originally posted by hondo21
That money would likely go straight to the Sinclair political lobbying slush funds and the like.

Yes, but as a Republican, that's all part of the evil master plan Bwa Ha Ha....j/k. I think Sinclair was foolish last campaign season, but whatever.

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post #471 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:43 PM
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Originally posted by foxeng
But you didn't answer his question. The issue isn't stock prices. The issue is fair market value for their product and Sinclair feels they are not getting fair market value. How do you respond to that?

Whose question?

But to answer yours, I have no problem with Sinclair seeking their perceived fair market value for their product, so long as they disclose to their advertisers that they are withholding that product from 70% of their viewers.

And, as I said, their stock price is a measure of investors' view of their strategy.
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post #472 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:44 PM
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Originally posted by jacmyoung
... Start demending cable to pay for its SD OTA signals, now that at least fits the punishment to the crime.

Yeah, let's see Sinclair do that when the contract is up. Demand that cable not retransmit ANY of their signals, analog or digital. Talk about suicide. At least for now, they absolutely need cable or they would die a quick death with hardly any viewers.

I wish they would be required to turn off the analog tomorrow and there was only digital. Then watch how fast they'd be slapping the "must-carry" card on the table.
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post #473 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:46 PM
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Originally posted by j_buckingham80


I guess my question is...Do people here, supporting the cable cos or not, really think the ATSC standard has changed nothing in the respective bargaining positions of Cable vs. Broadcasters? I tend to think it has precisely because broadcasters need cable less than they did with NTSC (again because of the crystal clear signal and some other issues).

No it hasn't, those ATSC signals don't increase the size of the reception area, in fact, ATSC can be even more problematic than receiving NTSC analog.

They don't need cable any less than they did before. That dynamic has not changed, although Sinclair would like you to believe that it has.
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post #474 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:53 PM
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Originally posted by keenan
No it hasn't, those ATSC signals don't increase the size of the reception area, in fact, ATSC can be even more problematic than receiving NTSC analog.

They don't need cable any less than they did before. That dynamic has not changed, although Sinclair would like you to believe that it has.

Fair enough, I guess it makes sense then why we stand on somewhat different sides in this discussion.

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Plus not everyone can get OTA. That is always ignored by those who are promoting OTA.

One thing that I kind of think about this, as one who lives out in Tracy, and gets decent signals from Sacto, but has one heck of a commute, is that in some ways though you get what you pay for. People who want to live in the splendor of the hills, and the beauty of the Bay (Heck I would too, I just can't afford it!) are going to suffer from a harder time getting OTA. And here a little bit of my cruel streak comes out, but my compassion meter just has a hard time with it.

That doesn't justify the OTA solves everything issue, but I would hope that the Cable co and the broadcaster would be more amenible in places like the Bay Area were reception is more difficult, but that may be a pipe dream.

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post #475 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 05:57 PM
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Originally posted by CPanther95
No posts were edited or deleted.

So, if Coke pays to put their logo on a jacket, I should be able to get those jackets for free and sell them?

We need to get off this "free" thing, Comcast does not expect to get the signal for free, there is always some sort of compensation involved, they just want to apply similar agreements as most all other broadcasters have done across the country.
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post #476 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 06:05 PM
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Originally posted by j_buckingham80

That doesn't justify the OTA solves everything issue, but I would hope that the Cable co and the broadcaster would be more amenible in places like the Bay Area were reception is more difficult, but that may be a pipe dream.

You can bet on it. In areas like SF bay area the broadcaster knows dang well that without cable they have close to 80% less eyeballs than they do with cable. Having to depend on the 13% OTA viewers in SF these broadcasters would be in a real hurtin' shape when it came to advertising revenue.
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post #477 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 06:09 PM
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So then, perhaps the issue does sort of resolve itself in hard to receive areas, while easier areas (like the Sacto-S.J. Valley) are going to have more carriage disputes.

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post #478 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 07:05 PM
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Originally posted by keenan
We need to get off this "free" thing, Comcast does not expect to get the signal for free, there is always some sort of compensation involved, they just want to apply similar agreements as most all other broadcasters have done across the country.

EXACTLY! Comcast is paying every station for their HD. Its an issue of greed. Sinclair wants more then the standard rates already set.

The networks upgraded to ATSC because they were required by law. If they did not wish to make this upgrade, they had the option to sell their affiliate. No one is forcing them to be in business.

By offering the product OTA, they are making zero compensation currently. By keeping their signal off of cable, they are making zero compensation. By offering their signal over cable, which does not cost them anything, they WILL make compensation. Why should Comcast give them more then what the other big 3 affiliates in the market have agreed to once they made this same realization. What does Comcast have to lose? Comcast is NOT going to make any more money by offering the Sinclair HD signal to their customers, in fact they will lose money by having to compensate Sinclair as they do currently with the other networks, in addition the bandwidth they will have to pay for to transmit the signal to their customers. Comcast wants to provide this signal to their customers beacuse it is a good PR move, and it will keep their customer satisfaction ratings up.

Honestly, being in a Sinclair market and dealing with the annoyance of having no FOX HD, despite the bulk of the programming I watch actually being on FOX, I fully support Comcast because they are not "getting the siginal for FREE" and since the launch of their HD, they have not asked me to assist in paying for the HD (and it is not a hidden charge, because I would pay the same for cable with or without HD). I support Comcast because they essentially agreed to comply with Sinclairs request for increased compensation (and the HD "tier" would have remained the same cost, so Comcast would have taken a hit on their profits) UNTIL Sinclair demanded this compensation be based on TOTAL subscribers as oppesed to subscribers who actually use HD (based on a source within the organization).

The fact is, Sinclair gains everything from the increased exposure whereas the gains for Comcast are minimal. I challenge all who support Sinclair to prove me wrong on any of what I just said, because it is pretty clear cut.
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post #479 of 1851 Old 02-27-2005, 07:21 PM
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Originally posted by j_buckingham80
So then, perhaps the issue does sort of resolve itself in hard to receive areas, while easier areas (like the Sacto-S.J. Valley) are going to have more carriage disputes.

Could be, but generally if a broadcaster owns a group of stations those decisions, especially ones as fundamental as what Sinclair is asking for, hold true for all the stations in the group.

Another thing that really hasn't been mentioned is the fact that OTA network television has been losing viewers to cable networks left and right, a trend that has been continuing for years. OTA broadcasters need to be on those cable systems to be able to even compete against those cable-sat/only networks.
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Originally posted by afail
The networks upgraded to ATSC because they were required by law. If they did not wish to make this upgrade, they had the option to sell their affiliate. No one is forcing them to be in business.

They are only required to broadcast a digital signal - not HDTV. And your attitude can just as easily apply to the cable companies. No one is forcing cable to be in business, or to pay anyone for a channel they do not want to carry. If the majority of cable subs don't care about local affilate HDTV, then they have nothing to worry about.

Those that want quality HD and are willing to pay for it, will go elsewhere. Those of you who would rather see a deal like the agreement "in principle" that offers sub-channel carriage in lieu of cash are supporting more channels at the expense of quality HDTV. A common attitude, but much less common on AVS' HDTV forums.
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