Originally Posted by Scarpad
What the world is the point of getting Cozi on Both the Ch 3 and Ch 30 diginet?
Plus most of these channels look like crap on a good tv.
The duplication of Cozi is because Hartford and Springfield are two separate TV markets. In Hartford, WVIT's parent company, NBC/Comcast, made the decision to put Cozi on 30-2, most likely because Cozi is also owned by NBC/Comcast. No other station in Hartford/New Haven can air Cozi.
In Springfield, Meredith for some reason chose Cozi as the diginet for channel 21-2, with CBS 3 on the main channel. Meredith has exclusivity for Cozi in Springfield.
Being able to receive both Hartford and Springfield stations, I had hoped that there would be more of a variety of choices as far as the diginets and programs in each market. But as you mentioned, it turns out the Springfield stations are picking up the same networks that are already available in Hartford, rather than choosing the diginets that don't have clearance in either market (like MeTV).
Consolidation of ownership isn't going to help this problem. The decisions about what diginets are going to be carried appear to be made at the corporate rather than the local level. I think that Sinclair would be inclined eventually to put the diginets that it owns on its stations instead of diginets from competing companies. It could then tell advertisers about the reach that its diginets have as far as potential viewing households.
Starting in January, local stations can voluntarily begin phasing in ATSC 3.0, although there are still some technical standards that committees have to agree on. The FCC approved it in November. From what I've read, with this new broadcasting method a station would be able to fit even more diginets on its bandwidth than it can fit now, in addition to having 4K on the primary channel. But it looks like the choices will still be limited for the viewer if the station groups pick up only the networks that they have a vested interest in carrying, and ignore what viewers would like to see.
About the look of those 480i diginets, the head of engineering for the Tribune Company said in an article that if one of its stations had a need for parts, the local engineer could go to the nearest Best Buy to get what was needed. I think that he was suggesting that their air chain was designed with simplicity of repair in mind along with cost-cutting. When I read that, I thought maybe that's the reason why there is a graininess and lack of sharpness on their diginet Antenna TV. The article seemed to imply that they are using consumer grade equipment rather than professional broadcast-quality equipment.
As of yesterday I noticed that the shows on Antenna TV now include a description of what the program is about (when "Info" is selected on the remote). Antenna TV in Chicago supplies this information to its affiliates, but for some reason WTIC has not been including it in its over-the-air signal for about the last four years. Maybe when the station added 61-3 and 61-4 the day before, it caused them to do some housekeeping with the air chain and the problem with the lack of show descriptions on 61-2 was fixed.