closing of "terrestrial loophole" and multiple DMAs (1 Viewer)

mjstraw

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Nov 29, 2004
78
1
Will the FCC closing of the "terrestrial loophole" mean that E* (if it wants to) will now be permitted to offer local channels from two DMAs, given the customer is located where both can be received?

It's always bothered me that Comcast can provide both Johnstown and Pittsburgh (PA) locals but E* is only allowed to offer me Pittsburgh. Not a very level playing field.

Mark
 

JohnL

Pub Member / Supporter
Sep 23, 2003
1,411
92
Spencerport, NY
Will the FCC closing of the "terrestrial loophole" mean that E* (if it wants to) will now be permitted to offer local channels from two DMAs, given the customer is located where both can be received?

It's always bothered me that Comcast can provide both Johnstown and Pittsburgh (PA) locals but E* is only allowed to offer me Pittsburgh. Not a very level playing field.

Mark

Mark,

The "Terrestrial Loophole" has absoultely NOTHING to do with Federally licensed DMA OTA broadcasting.

The Loophole refers to Cable and or content owners providing signals to other Third Party providers (Other Cable companies and satellite providers). In the past legislation and or Federal statues required Content owners, or vertically integrated Cable companies could NOT withhold their content from other providers if that content was distributed and or uplinked to satellite to get the Source of the broadcast to the final distribution point.

Comcast as well as a couple of other providers decided if they used Terrestrial Fiber or copper lines to get the source broadcast to that companies own headend with OUT uplinking it to satellite they could withhold that content or those channels from satellite companies.

For Years Comcast in Philladelphia used this loophole to withhold all of their Regional sports coverage. This meant any and all subscribers within the DMA for the Philadelphia Sports teams were required to subscribe the local Cable Company Comcast, effectively cutting off any Satellite competition at the knees.

This new ruling puts Cable companies and Satellite companies on equal footing, again this has nothing to do with Local OTA franchising and DMA boundaries for OTA broadcasts.

The proper term for what you are describing is called "Significantly Viewed". This was included in the last revision of the Satellite Home Viewers act. It mandated the FCC setup a database for the entire country setup by Addresses and or Zip Code whom were in these areas. The end result was most areas of the country that straddled DMA's were left out. Currently DirecTV is the only national provider eligible to carry Significantly Viewed Stations, and to my knowledge are not offering any or maybe a few subscribers this option.

The Definition of "Significantly Viewed" are Local DMA OTA stations in which their signals Bleed over into another Local DMA's market so that a Significant number of viewers can receive said signals from the secondary DMA. In these and only these conditions is a satellite provider allowed to carry Network affiliated signals from a secondary market in another Local Market. Again the FCC wrote the new maps and which residents qualified and which did not, in most cases these new maps are VERY conservative and only allow Secondary Market signals to a very small minority in their primary market.

John
 
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mjstraw

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Nov 29, 2004
78
1
Thanks for the good explanation. I'm definitely in a "straddling" location, and I'm not out in the middle of nowhere, either :)

Around here, with a halfway decent antenna and a rotator you can pick up both Pittsburgh and Johnstown analog VHF OTA quite nicely. UHF is problematic.

Haven't tried, but according to antennaweb.org even the highest-gain antenna won't let me receive any OTA digital channels.

I guess it will remain an unlevel playing field for the forseeable future as comcast contnues to be permitted to provide service that E* is prohibited from doing.

Mark
 

patsfan72

SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 21, 2008
90
0
western mass
i can receive two dma's with absolutely no problems and some channels from a third with just a channel master 4228 and no amp.i get all of Springfield Ma and all of Hartford/New haven channels as well as 2 from Boston.

But E* does not carry locals here in Springfield so i am actually very happy to get all those OTA(also i "moved" to NYC to get there locals so i am pretty much covered with the big 4)
 

Bob Haller

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Sep 11, 2003
25,124
4,060
pittsburgh pa
Thanks for the good explanation. I'm definitely in a "straddling" location, and I'm not out in the middle of nowhere, either :)

Around here, with a halfway decent antenna and a rotator you can pick up both Pittsburgh and Johnstown analog VHF OTA quite nicely. UHF is problematic.

Haven't tried, but according to antennaweb.org even the highest-gain antenna won't let me receive any OTA digital channels.

I guess it will remain an unlevel playing field for the forseeable future as comcast contnues to be permitted to provide service that E* is prohibited from doing.

Mark

Hey I live in the north hills of pittsburgh near ross park mall.

What part of pittsburgh area are you in?
 

EdZackery

SatelliteGuys Pro
Nov 29, 2009
170
0
NW Ohio
Will the FCC closing of the "terrestrial loophole" mean that E* (if it wants to) will now be permitted to offer local channels from two DMAs, given the customer is located where both can be received?

It's always bothered me that Comcast can provide both Johnstown and Pittsburgh (PA) locals but E* is only allowed to offer me Pittsburgh. Not a very level playing field.

Mark

Know just what you are saying. In my area TWC can give locals from Toledo, Fort Wayne or Dayton. 75 miles via ota for me to any one of them. We get all but fox local ota in HD no problem from Lima, which had NBC in digital for years now, but just got abc, cbs, and fox in lo power digital few months ago. So now Lima is included not long ago on dish with sd. The big hassle around that area now is trying to grab a big piece of that handout for hi speed rail system, would like to live 25 more years so I could tell you about our high speed rail system stopping in a town to watch Daytona 500 in sd!!
 

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