Originally posted by spwace
Broadcasters laid out millions to put those digital signals on the air and have not gotten any of that investment back. ...
That's what's called a "sunk cost." They were required by law to upgrade to digital TV for their OTA signal. It should have no bearing on economic decisions going forward.
Look, Sinclair has a tough sell with many of us around here, because they have not been consumer-friendly at all. Sinclair entered the digital age kicking and screaming. They fought the transition long after it was well underway by more forward-thinking broadcasters. They threw up smokescreens about the 8VSB system, saying it was technically inferior, when their real motive was simply to not spend money to comply with the law. When they did go digital it was usually barebones minimum, with low power and a crappy 480i signal quality. At least for the Fox affiliates it was only when Fox mandated upgrades and helped the stations do it that they finally fell in line.
It's this past consumer-unfriendly behavior by Sinclair that merits them absolutely no sympathy among a large number of HD enthusiasts. They have no "good will" equity with me, to the point that I favor the cable companies (and that isn't easy for me to do) in this struggle.
As I said before, I have no problem with the concept of individual broadcasters getting paid a fair amount for the retransmission of their signals, but only if I get to choose all the stations I want to pay for (a la carte cable). Unfortunately, that is not the system we have now. Every time new channels are added we are asked to pay more, whether we want them or not. Thus, our cable bills are too high and I have no tolerance for additional fees for one station when its competitors aren't demanding the same.
Maybe a selfish view, but all politics are local.