An open letter to the DIRT team at Satelliteguys (1 Viewer)

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jspriddy

Thread Starter
Well-Known SatelliteGuys Member
May 8, 2010
32
0
Alabama
I live in an orphan county, Lamar County, Alabama. We are assigned to the Columbus-Tupelo-West Point (MS) DMA. Making this brief as possible, we, the residents of Lamar County, would prefer to view Alabama locals, or to be more specific-news, sports and weather from our home state, Alabama. Where syndicated programming originates is immaterial. We have a petition with over 3000 signatures from viewers in Lamar County that attests to this. 3000 signatures in a small rural county is huge.


The FCC says, and I can provide documentation, that we are eligible to receive “significantly viewed” stations now. Our significantly viewed stations include three Alabama stations:


Lamar (referring to Lamar County, Alabama, from the FCC link provided below)
WCBI-TV, 4, Columbus, MS
+WTVA, 9, Tupelo, MS
WBRC, 6, Birmingham, AL
WVTM-TV, 13, Birmingham, AL (formerly WAPI)
+WDBB, 17, Bessemer, AL


http://transition.fcc.gov/mb/significantviewedstations031011.pdf


Why are these not the stations we receive? Why do we receive channel 27 WLOV, West Point, MS., and 45 WKDH Houston, MS.? These are not on our significantly viewed list.


Also, the National Association of Broadcasters says this about local programming for orphan counties in a report to the FCC in January of this year:


“...if the key is local sports and news, that programming can and is being licensed for delivery to in-state viewers without having to duplicate a station's entire national and syndicated programming lineup. Where there is a will, NAB suggests, there is a technical way that does not require the government to intervene.”


To get to the point, what is Dish Network's opposition to this? Are they getting by cheaper this way? In other words, making more from customers in Lamar County than in adjoining counties? Have they just “taken the studs” on us? Just what is it? I'm just asking for an honest answer.

John
 
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harshness

SatelliteGuys Master
May 5, 2007
16,560
2,680
Salem, OR
Don't confuse "significantly viewed" with your "local" stations. Significantly viewed is a very slippery slope in the satellite TV business and it is markedly different from significantly viewed in the cable television world.

As long a Nielsen Media Research observes that most people in your area shop in Mississippi, your locals will keep coming from there.

If you want to convince someone, you need to talk to Nielsen. DISH Network technical support will not be able to help you.
 

n1wbd

Silent Key - RIP 1/2/2012
Supporting Founder
Sep 7, 2003
826
0
Grafton,NH
Don't waste your breath, I have the same problem here in NH getting WMUR as a SV channel and the funny part is we had WMUR in 2006 and they took it away. Then they fixed the law so we could get WMUR and after begging and pleading with Dish Network thru the DIRT team we could never get a honest answer. So don't waste your breath unfortunately I have come to the realization if I want WMUR I have to switch to Directv. I just don't want the hassle to switch.


I live in an orphan county, Lamar County, Alabama. We are assigned to the Columbus-Tupelo-West Point (MS) DMA. Making this brief as possible, we, the residents of Lamar County, would prefer to view Alabama locals, or to be more specific-news, sports and weather from our home state, Alabama. Where syndicated programming originates is immaterial. We have a petition with over 3000 signatures from viewers in Lamar County that attests to this. 3000 signatures in a small rural county is huge.


The FCC says, and I can provide documentation, that we are eligible to receive “significantly viewed” stations now. Our significantly viewed stations include three Alabama stations:


Lamar (referring to Lamar County, Alabama, from the FCC link provided below)
WCBI-TV, 4, Columbus, MS
+WTVA, 9, Tupelo, MS
WBRC, 6, Birmingham, AL
WVTM-TV, 13, Birmingham, AL (formerly WAPI)
+WDBB, 17, Bessemer, AL


http://transition.fcc.gov/mb/significantviewedstations031011.pdf


Why are these not the stations we receive? Why do we receive channel 27 WLOV, West Point, MS., and 45 WKDH Houston, MS.? These are not on our significantly viewed list.


Also, the National Association of Broadcasters says this about local programming for orphan counties in a report to the FCC in January of this year:


“...if the key is local sports and news, that programming can and is being licensed for delivery to in-state viewers without having to duplicate a station's entire national and syndicated programming lineup. Where there is a will, NAB suggests, there is a technical way that does not require the government to intervene.”


To get to the point, what is Dish Network's opposition to this? Are they getting by cheaper this way? In other words, making more from customers in Lamar County than in adjoining counties? Have they just “taken the studs” on us? Just what is it? I'm just asking for an honest answer.

John
 

Iceberg

The No Pain Train
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
282
35
None Your Business
As of right now Dish can only offer a neighboring local if you are missing one in your market. There is one exception that I know of and that is the 2 Southern counties in Vermont and that was due to a congressman/senator passing a law that Vermont residents get their locals (as per Nielsen) and the Vermont locals (the Big 4)

I just checked Directv (they do have SV in extreme cases) and they don't for that county. Same locals as Dish
 

Iceberg

The No Pain Train
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
282
35
None Your Business
Don't waste your breath, I have the same problem here in NH getting WMUR as a SV channel and the funny part is we had WMUR in 2006 and they took it away. Then they fixed the law so we could get WMUR and after begging and pleading with Dish Network thru the DIRT team we could never get a honest answer. So don't waste your breath unfortunately I have come to the realization if I want WMUR I have to switch to Directv. I just don't want the hassle to switch.

Bob alot of it has to do with the FCC/Dish agreement. While Dish does import neighboring locals if a network is missing, the whole SV thing they still cannot do.
This is one of those the FCC playing both sides
 

jspriddy

Thread Starter
Well-Known SatelliteGuys Member
May 8, 2010
32
0
Alabama
MEMORANDUM May 17, 2011
To: Hon. Robert Aderholt
Attention: Paul Housel
From: Charles B. Goldfarb, Specialist in Telecommunications Policy, 7-7252 (Congressional Research Service)
Subject: Satellite Carriage of Broadcast Television Signals and DMAs



"However, the FCC also has identified WBRC and WVTM in Birmingham, and WDBB in
Bessemer, as stations that are “significantly viewed” in Lamar County and thus satellite operators may offer the signals of those stations to their Lamar County subscribers."

Beside this, what about the statement by the National Association of Broadcasters to the FCC:

“...if the key is local sports and news, that programming can and is being licensed for delivery to in-state viewers without having to duplicate a station's entire national and syndicated programming lineup. Where there is a will, NAB suggests, there is a technical way that does not require the government to intervene.”



I don't see how it could be any clearer. Direct is offering significantly viewed stations to Cleburne County, AL, which is in the Atlanta, GA DMA.

John
 

shkarter1985

SatelliteGuys Pro
Aug 21, 2008
305
4
Greenwood, South Carolina
I live in the Greenville, SC market (#36). Asheville, North Carolina and Toccoa, Georgia are part of this market. Nielsen's DMA system is frustrating. I disagree with the network non-duplication/syndicated exclusitivy rules. But in the Greenville, SC market they're news they broadcasted I would say 85% South Carolina news (Greenville/Spartanburg/Anderson/Greenwood), 10% North Carolina news (Asheville, Hendersonville), and 5% Georgia news (Toccoa, Elberton, Hart). Yes if they're an NFL fan and can't afford D* NFL Sunday Ticket, they're forced to watch Carolina Panthers (including those in the Georgia portion of the Greenville, SC market) instead of their home state football team in Georgia (i.e. Atlanta Falcons). I know how you feel unfortunately it's the law. My significantly viewed station where I live is WJBF-TV 6 (ABC) from Augusta, Georgia which is in the Augusta, GA DMA of course.

Other subjects like retransmission consent is getting pretty messy recently eventhough in this economy, I almost loss my local NBC station (owned by Hearst) last year, but they reached an agreement before New Years Day. IMHO, I think they need a Reform on retransmission consent and a reform on the DMA system.

I've found this interesting petition to sign. https://wwws.whitehouse.gov/petitio...cast-television-laws-and-regulations/LpbJk6hc

Thank you for your time. Yes, I really enjoyed my Thanksgiving :)
 

Iceberg

The No Pain Train
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
282
35
None Your Business

"However, the FCC also has identified WBRC and WVTM in Birmingham, and WDBB in
Bessemer, as stations that are “significantly viewed” in Lamar County and thus satellite operators may offer the signals of those stations to their Lamar County subscribers."
[/I]I don't see how it could be any clearer.
Dish last I checked can only offer a neighboring local if there is one missing. Otherwise they can't

Direct is offering significantly viewed stations to Cleburne County, AL, which is in the Atlanta, GA DMA.
only Fox & NBC
 

Claude Greiner

SatelliteGuys Master
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
13,225
3,761
Detroit - The Paris of the Midwest
I have been in this business for 12 years, and I don't think an open letter is going to work.

The only thing that will get a significantly viewed station is if the following where to happen...

#1 It would have to be perfectly legal for Dish to import the distant signal
#2 The station would have to provide their signal at standard retransmission rates or no cost to DISH Network

Then one of the following from below...
#A There was some major sports team, or sporting event held on these channels that would give Dish Network a reason to carry the channel.

#B There would be a significant number of customers disconnecting over not getting this channel.

#C There would be an advantage to gain a significant amount of customers by carrying this channel.
 

Juan

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Sep 14, 2003
25,865
5,599
Moscow Russia
#A There was some major sports team, or sporting event held on these channels that would give Dish Network a reason to carry the channel.

:coffee:brushteeth::eek:
 

jspriddy

Thread Starter
Well-Known SatelliteGuys Member
May 8, 2010
32
0
Alabama
Dish last I checked can only offer a neighboring local if there is one missing. Otherwise they can't

Cleburne County did not have one missing. Do you really think Atlanta, Georgia doesn't have a full complement of network stations?


only Fox & NBC

And these are the two Alabama stations on their SV list:

Cleburne (Alabama)
WSB-TV, 2, Atlanta, GA
WAGA, 5, Atlanta, GA
WXIA-TV, 11, Atlanta, GA (formerly WQXI)
WBRC, 6, Birmingham, AL (FOX)
WVTM-TV, 13, Birmingham, AL (formerly WAPI) (NBC)
 

eacalhoun

Pub Member / Supporter
Pub Member / Supporter
Jan 20, 2006
581
12
Morganton, NC
I would suggest to the OP to contact and/or send the petition to their local representatives. The political process is about the best bet - unfortunately - in such matters.
 

Tampa8

Supporting Founder
Pub Member / Supporter
Lifetime Supporter
Sep 8, 2003
17,916
7,352
Tampa/Eastern Ct
If they are truly significantly viewed, can you get them with an antenna? Since Dish receivers will integrate over the air into the guide, that should work. Be sure to read what Claude wrote, and as mentioned in a post, don't confuse cable significantly viewed with Satellite. Since there is nothing forcing SV to be carried, what Claude wrote is particularly relevant.

This is a result of what some of us have long been saying. This is the networks and FCC rules at work, not really a Dish problem. If another carrier has the networks you want I would say use that carrier, or add them to get those networks if you can't get them OTA. That doesn't mean I don't agree with what you are asking, I most certainly agree, but it falls into many many other requests from many areas that I don't see changing unless the networks and the FCC change their rules.
 
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Iceberg

The No Pain Train
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
282
35
None Your Business
Cleburne County did not have one missing. Do you really think Atlanta, Georgia doesn't have a full complement of network stations?
What the hell are you talking about? Dish right now is only allowed to import a neighboring station if there is no network in that market. Example is 75 miles down the road from me. Mankato, MN is a 2 station DMA (CBS & Fox subchannel). Dish gives them KEYC (CBS), KEYC-DT2 (Fox) and they import KSTP (ABC) and KARE (NBC) from Minneapolis. As of right now that is the ONLY way Dish can give you a neighboring local. Again I posted the ONE exception to that and again it took the congressman/senator from that area to pass a law to allow it.

Dish has very strict rules on what they can offer that isnt in your market. That is due to their issues back in 06 when they offered distants to folks who didn't qualify legally. So now that they are allowed to again they have to follow the rules the FCC have given them. Thats why the only folks who can get Distants through Dish are RV drivers/semi drivers.

Directv is allowed to do Sig viewed in some areas.
 

jspriddy

Thread Starter
Well-Known SatelliteGuys Member
May 8, 2010
32
0
Alabama
What the hell are you talking about? Dish right now is only allowed to import a neighboring station if there is no network in that market. Example is 75 miles down the road from me. Mankato, MN is a 2 station DMA (CBS & Fox subchannel). Dish gives them KEYC (CBS), KEYC-DT2 (Fox) and they import KSTP (ABC) and KARE (NBC) from Minneapolis. As of right now that is the ONLY way Dish can give you a neighboring local. Again I posted the ONE exception to that and again it took the congressman/senator from that area to pass a law to allow it.

Dish has very strict rules on what they can offer that isnt in your market. That is due to their issues back in 06 when they offered distants to folks who didn't qualify legally. So now that they are allowed to again they have to follow the rules the FCC have given them. Thats why the only folks who can get Distants through Dish are RV drivers/semi drivers.

Directv is allowed to do Sig viewed in some areas.

Then the key is for everyone in the county to go to Direct. I guess that's our next step, since Direct can do it and Dish can't. It's already been discussed county wide, and with now 3500 signatures, I don't think we'll have a problem getting people to switch.

Direct has done it in Cleburne County, Alabama. I'd advise anyone, nationwide, in this predicament to contact Direct.

John
 
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Tampa8

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Sep 8, 2003
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Then the key is for everyone in the county to go to Direct. I guess that's our next step, since Direct can do it and Dish can't. It's already been discussed county wide, and with now 3500 signatures, I don't think we'll have a problem getting people to switch.

John

I wouldn't blame you, but you make it sound like a revelation. Just like those that are most interested in sports, and sports in HD. Find the provider that gives you that.
 

jspriddy

Thread Starter
Well-Known SatelliteGuys Member
May 8, 2010
32
0
Alabama
I have been in this business for 12 years, and I don't think an open letter is going to work.

The only thing that will get a significantly viewed station is if the following where to happen...

#1 It would have to be perfectly legal for Dish to import the distant signal
#2 The station would have to provide their signal at standard retransmission rates or no cost to DISH Network

Then one of the following from below...
#A There was some major sports team, or sporting event held on these channels that would give Dish Network a reason to carry the channel.

#B There would be a significant number of customers disconnecting over not getting this channel.

#C There would be an advantage to gain a significant amount of customers by carrying this channel.

The FCC says it is perfectly legal.
 

jspriddy

Thread Starter
Well-Known SatelliteGuys Member
May 8, 2010
32
0
Alabama
I wouldn't blame you, but you make it sound like a revelation. Just like those that are most interested in sports, and sports in HD. Find the provider that gives you that​




Not a revelation, just another option. Dish seems unequivocally opposed, Direct seems somewhat open. We have nothing to lose.
 

Iceberg

The No Pain Train
Supporting Founder
Nov 17, 2003
282
35
None Your Business
The FCC says it is perfectly legal.

that same FCC is telling Dish as of right now they are NOT allowed to sell any station not in the market (as designated by Nielsen) unless that market is missing that network.
Dish decided to dance on the landmine too many times back in 06 by allowing folks who shouldnt have qualified for distants to get them. They went to court and lost.

They recently were allowed to carry stations outside of the area in the example I have given (missing affiliates). No matter how many times you ask, the answer is the same. Dish cannot import any station not in your market unless that affiliate is missing
 
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