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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Theoretical question:


If I subscribe to cable (and hence pay for the service, box, etc...) for a TV, but connect another TV to the cable line without a converter (just to pickup the local channels, for example - not for any premium services, and not using any kind of illegal descrambler), is that cable fraud?


It seems a bit of a gray area to me as I would be paying the cable company for its services, and would not be stealing any premium services. IDK - I could see the legality of it swing either way.


My girlfriend asked me this weekend, and I had to reply that I honestly had no idea. Does anybody know?
 

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No. As long as you aren't using any unauthorized "descrambler" cable boxes, you are perfectly fine. Just don't expect the channels that require the cable box.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Really? I would've expected that it would be illegal...


Thanks 10e6,
 

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Some used to charge for additional outlets a LONG time ago, but these days, it's a selling point over DBS. You should probably call them to see how many they "support," which is more of an adequate signal question than it is a legal question.


Doc
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Oh, I'm not planning on doing it. We were moving around equipment this weekend, and my girlfriend asked the question "Would the TV work without the cable box? Can you just plug the cable directly into the wall?"


When I replied that yes, it would, but the channels would be slightly different and there would be no premium content, she asked "What's to stop people from stealing cable?"


I replied that I didn't think it was cable theft.


"You think? You mean, you don't know?" she asked.


Stumped was I, yes! To AVSForum I went. Knowledgeable now am I. Yes!
 

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If you don't have a subscription, the cable company is suppose to disconnect the line to prevent anyone from using it. If they don't, that's their problem especially if you've already told them you don't want it.
 

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If you receive cable w/o paying for it it is up to a $4000 fine in Colorado.


Though they did remove this portion from the law
Quote:
(4) In an action for civil theft of cable television service, the existence on the property and in the actual possession of the accused of the following shall be prima facie evidence of his intent to commit civil theft of cable television service and of his commission of civil theft of cable television service: Any connection, wire, or conductor, or any device whatsoever, which is connected in such a manner as would appear to permit the use of cable television service without the same being reported for payment to and specifically authorized by the cable television system supplying the service
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
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If you don't have a subscription, the cable company is suppose to disconnect the line to prevent anyone from using it. If they don't, that's their problem especially if you've already told them you don't want it.
Ahh, but that's the rub. Assume I did have a subscription - just not for one particular TV. Kinda put it into the gray area for me...
 

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Cable companies do not charge for additional TV sets to be hooked up, unless you use one of their boxes. Just use a splitter and you instantly have an additional line.


Just don't use a pirated box to get extra channels.


This has been cables' selling point against the DBS services for many years.


Do what you want with the one cable coming from the street/pole etc.
 

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Just to confirm what others have said: you can do whatever you want with the signals you pay for that come thru the cable. Connect to as many TV's, VCRs, DVD recorders etc. Of course to get the "digital" channels off cable you will need to pay extra (in most cases) for a box.

Many, many years ago some systems would try to charge an extra fee for each TV. I may be wrong, but i think some regulation now prohibits them charging for each TV.


Most of you here are too young, but "THE" phone company used to charge what was then a large fee for each phone. You weren't "allowed" to own phones - you had to rent them. This practice ended about 15 years ago or so.


...mike
 

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When satellite was installed I downgraded my cable service. At that time the cable rep told me they would need to come out and install a cable box to allow me to subscribe to their lowest priced service. I didn't want to go through a box so they subscribed me to their next level of analog service which includes a box rental charge. They & I know I don't have their box, but in order to bypass their box which limits a cable hook up to their basic service I have to pay an additional monthly charge to receive their entire unscrambled analog lineup.


If I decided to upgrade to their HD service they have an additional monthly programming charge for HD which for now is only a few local stations. If you subscribe to a pay service they don't charge extra for HBO or Show in HD if you subscribe to the HD tier. But you do have to also subscribe to the digital tier which requires the use of a box. If you don't subscribe to a pay service there is an extra charge for the digital box. If you are a pay subscriber the box is included at no additional charge.


I think it is unreasonable of the cable co to charge for equipment I don't use. It's bad enough they charge me for extra channels I don't watch. I just want the simplest set up possible & they charge me extra for that.
 

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Just like cable companies are charging cable internet customers a $10 access fee for not having their TV service aswell.


I actually got my provider to dump the $10 fee on my account. Enough b*tching about it they gave in. They also took 1/2 off of the modem rental.
 

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I just walked through this with my local (Comcast Seattle) cable company. I have a Home Director system, so a single cable line in feeds an amp that feed every outlet in my house. They told me that my limited cable subscription ($12.30) covered every outlet in my house.


I also got a box for HD in one room. I pay $10.10 for the box. I asked them about the "builtin HD" TVs that decrypt the HD QAM signal and they said using one would be fine. I wouldn't have to pay anything extra.


YMMV...


-Laudon
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
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I also got a box for HD in one room. I pay $10.10 for the box. I asked them about the "builtin HD" TVs that decrypt the HD QAM signal and they said using one would be fine. I wouldn't have to pay anything extra.
IDK if that's a normal, expected response, but if I got such a response from TWCNYC I'd go out and by the rep a dozen roses.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by yubyub
IDK if that's a normal, expected response, but if I got such a response from TWCNYC I'd go out and by the rep a dozen roses.
Having had a very long battle with AT&T Cable in the past, I must say I have been very impressed with Comcast. I've found that getting a hold of the technical support rather than customer support people can make a world of difference.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
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I've found that getting a hold of the technical support rather than customer support people can make a world of difference.
I've found that getting technical people at TWCNYC is an NP-complete problem. It's much easier to post here for the info, and receive it directly from people at TWCNYC who are on the forum and care about HD.


Thankfully, I have to say that I have never really needed tech support from TWCNYC. It's more technical info that I'm always after, which this forum usually has before TWCNYC reps can figure it out :D. Other than that, my experiences with TWCNYC have been excellent.
 
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