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post #9571 of 9578 Old Yesterday, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by SPDICKEY View Post
"For a period of time"

Like cablecards, these 'free' converters are destined to eventually be a cash cow for cablecos. When I first subscribed, TW was charging me a total of $9 for four cablecards, and nothing for the modem. Now it's $14.50 a month, and I'm still using the same cablecards, which were paid off a long, long time ago.

While there are those cableco sycophants who like to say that's the price I pay for having TiVos, the opposite is true. If it wasn't for the availability of cablecards and the awful, awful, awful Tuning Adapters, I would have switched to DirecTV and gotten several TiVos from them long ago, and had PPV, OnDemand, and no TA nonsense. The determining factor for me is that I want TiVos, not TW's utterly crappy compressed to death cable service and their unsophisticated DVRs. If FiOS' superior quality service was available here, I would disconnect TW in a heartbeat.

That the cablecos managed to twist the FCC's arm once again in their favor is only indicative of the way corporations tell the government what to do now, and the consumer is screwed at every turn.

Neither the cable card nor tuning adapter mandates would stand a prayer if the idea were introduced today - just too much of a 'financial burden' on the multi-billion dollar cable business, I'm sure, a complaint brought home no doubt during a fact finding junket for FCC people in a Maui resort for a week.
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post #9572 of 9578 Old Yesterday, 03:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DougDingle View Post
"For a period of time"

Like cablecards, these 'free' converters are destined to eventually be a cash cow for cablecos. When I first subscribed, TW was charging me a total of $9 for four cablecards, and nothing for the modem. Now it's $14.50 a month, and I'm still using the same cablecards, which were paid off a long, long time ago.

While there are those cableco sycophants who like to say that's the price I pay for having TiVos, the opposite is true. If it wasn't for the availability of cablecards and the awful, awful, awful Tuning Adapters, I would have switched to DirecTV and gotten several TiVos from them long ago, and had PPV, OnDemand, and no TA nonsense. The determining factor for me is that I want TiVos, not TW's utterly crappy compressed to death cable service and their unsophisticated DVRs. If FiOS' superior quality service was available here, I would disconnect TW in a heartbeat.

That the cablecos managed to twist the FCC's arm once again in their favor is only indicative of the way corporations tell the government what to do now, and the consumer is screwed at every turn.

Neither the cable card nor tuning adapter mandates would stand a prayer if the idea were introduced today - just too much of a 'financial burden' on the multi-billion dollar cable business, I'm sure, a complaint brought home no doubt during a fact finding junket for FCC people in a Maui resort for a week.
Did satellite and other non-cable TV providers do the same with FCC?
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post #9573 of 9578 Old Yesterday, 04:28 PM
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Did satellite and other non-cable TV providers do the same with FCC?
Sat providers are treated somewhat differently because they are able to bring service to areas where cablecos found it economically nonviable to run wire. Many rural areas depend on satellite for TV. And because satellite signals don't come in on a wire, they had to supply some type of set top box for reception, even when it was standard def analog video. A decade ago, you could buy the box at Best Buy or Costco for $99, and own the box, which was turned on in exchange for a service commitment (kind of like cell phones), but now you can no longer buy satellite hardware just as you cannot buy cableco hardware except for TiVos, and then you still cannot buy cable cards. It's all about the control, not whatever fantasy story they tell the FCC.

Satellite companies, like cablecos, have fought very hard for the right to drop local channels, or charge extra for them, but so far, the FCC and Congress have stuck to their guns. With a new group coming into office in January, that may all change.

The two satellite companies have roughly 25-30 million subscribers between them, whereas the top three cablecos are currently at around 40-45 million subscribers. Both groups are fighting very hard to price themselves totally out of the market by continually raising prices while lowering image quality by adding more and more channels that fewer and fewer people watch, and losing customers in the process. The cablecos will have already figured out their future is in a la carte channels, broadband, and VOIP, they just don't know how they're going to get there yet. Satellite companies are a one trick pony - it's video or nothing. Their broadband is a joke.

My prediction: in 20 years (or less), video will be delivered either through streaming or by satellite only, broadband mostly by copper but high powered neighborhood wi-fi is also coming, which is why the cablecos fight so hard to not let cities supply it as a (free) service, and are mostly succeeding.

As far as influencing (bribing) the FCC, they seem to be at par. The one group that is routinely ignored by the FCC and every other governmental body is the consumer.
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post #9574 of 9578 Old Yesterday, 04:45 PM
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Originally Posted by DougDingle View Post
Sat providers are treated somewhat differently because they are able to bring service to areas where cablecos found it economically nonviable to run wire. Many rural areas depend on satellite for TV. And because satellite signals don't come in on a wire, they had to supply some type of set top box for reception, even when it was standard def analog video. A decade ago, you could buy the box at Best Buy or Costco for $99, and own the box, which was turned on in exchange for a service commitment (kind of like cell phones), but now you can no longer buy satellite hardware just as you cannot buy cableco hardware except for TiVos, and then you still cannot buy cable cards. It's all about the control, not whatever fantasy story they tell the FCC.

Satellite companies, like cablecos, have fought very hard for the right to drop local channels, or charge extra for them, but so far, the FCC and Congress have stuck to their guns. With a new group coming into office in January, that may all change.

The two satellite companies have roughly 25-30 million subscribers between them, whereas the top three cablecos are currently at around 40-45 million subscribers. Both groups are fighting very hard to price themselves totally out of the market by continually raising prices while lowering image quality by adding more and more channels that fewer and fewer people watch, and losing customers in the process. The cablecos will have already figured out their future is in a la carte channels, broadband, and VOIP, they just don't know how they're going to get there yet. Satellite companies are a one trick pony - it's video or nothing. Their broadband is a joke.

My prediction: in 20 years (or less), video will be delivered either through streaming or by satellite only, broadband mostly by copper but high powered neighborhood wi-fi is also coming, which is why the cablecos fight so hard to not let cities supply it as a (free) service, and are mostly succeeding.

As far as influencing (bribing) the FCC, they seem to be at par. The one group that is routinely ignored by the FCC and every other governmental body is the consumer.

One huge mistake that Congress made in 1992 is allowing the local tv stations to charge for carriage. They can elect "must-carry" status, which is what some little-watched stations like KDOC 56 probably do, or they can elect "retransmission consent" status, which is what KCBS, KNBC, and KABC, to cite a few, do. "Retransmission consent" means that the cable or satellite carrier must do whatever the station wants in order to carry the station. It usually involves paying a lot of money to the station, and often carrying other, less-desired stations that the main station owns. This law that Congress passed has led to greatly increased cable/satellite rates, numerous retransmission disputes, and is leading to the end of broadcast television. Broadcasters are no longer dependent as much on advertising fees, and are more dependent on retransmission fees. We have the National Association of Broadcasters to thank for lobbying Congress to pass this law.


So if you think that CBS president Leslie Moonves and CSI star Mark Harmon need to earn more money....
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post #9575 of 9578 Old Yesterday, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by DougDingle View Post
Sat providers are treated somewhat differently because they are able to bring service to areas where cablecos found it economically nonviable to run wire. Many rural areas depend on satellite for TV. And because satellite signals don't come in on a wire, they had to supply some type of set top box for reception, even when it was standard def analog video. A decade ago, you could buy the box at Best Buy or Costco for $99, and own the box, which was turned on in exchange for a service commitment (kind of like cell phones), but now you can no longer buy satellite hardware just as you cannot buy cableco hardware except for TiVos, and then you still cannot buy cable cards. It's all about the control, not whatever fantasy story they tell the FCC.

Satellite companies, like cablecos, have fought very hard for the right to drop local channels, or charge extra for them, but so far, the FCC and Congress have stuck to their guns. With a new group coming into office in January, that may all change.

The two satellite companies have roughly 25-30 million subscribers between them, whereas the top three cablecos are currently at around 40-45 million subscribers. Both groups are fighting very hard to price themselves totally out of the market by continually raising prices while lowering image quality by adding more and more channels that fewer and fewer people watch, and losing customers in the process. The cablecos will have already figured out their future is in a la carte channels, broadband, and VOIP, they just don't know how they're going to get there yet. Satellite companies are a one trick pony - it's video or nothing. Their broadband is a joke.

My prediction: in 20 years (or less), video will be delivered either through streaming or by satellite only, broadband mostly by copper but high powered neighborhood wi-fi is also coming, which is why the cablecos fight so hard to not let cities supply it as a (free) service, and are mostly succeeding.

As far as influencing (bribing) the FCC, they seem to be at par. The one group that is routinely ignored by the FCC and every other governmental body is the consumer.

And I'll add another thing. The FCC never developed the two-way cable card standard, thanks to cable company lobbying. So I was willing to get rid of the Time-Warner dvrs and equipment to go with Tivo, but I had to give up "on demand" to do it. I was willing to do so because Time-Warner charged exorbinant, made-up fees. I had to pay dvr rental fees, dvr service fees, and a whole-house dvr fee, and the equipment had to be reset on a daily basis. To get rid of those fees, and to have equipment that is reliable and doesn't have to be reset everyday, I purchased the Tivo equipment and gave up "on demand."


Thanks to cable company lobbying of the FCC, there is no true competition in the cable box/dvr area. If a two-way standard existed, there would be more cable boxes available for purchase in stores and many more Time-Warner customers would abandon the Time-Warner equipment.
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Last edited by sted; Yesterday at 07:16 PM.
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post #9576 of 9578 Old Today, 07:50 AM
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I just got my cable bill. The bill stated that next month TWC is increasing the price of HBO, the Movie Pass, and is also increasing the modem lease fee and the digital adapter fee. They are also increasing the so-called broadcast television surcharge and are adding a sports programming surcharge. It is not clear what customers will be paying the sports programming surcharge.
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post #9577 of 9578 Old Today, 08:15 AM
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Originally Posted by sted View Post
I just got my cable bill. The bill stated that next month TWC is increasing the price of HBO, the Movie Pass, and is also increasing the modem lease fee and the digital adapter fee. They are also increasing the so-called broadcast television surcharge and are adding a sports programming surcharge. It is not clear what customers will be paying the sports programming surcharge.
Maybe $2.75 as shown in https://twitter.com/ToddJClausen/sta...419523/photo/1 ?
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post #9578 of 9578 Old Today, 08:47 AM
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The broadcast surcharge and the sports surcharge are very deceptive. They are really rate increases, yet TWC wants to say their rates are lower than they are. The customer is then hit with "surcharges" (nothing more than rate increases) on the bill. These surcharges are not taxes--they are just more money to TWC.
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