Report: Senators Eye Distant Nets

silversurfer

silversurfer

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Sep 8, 2003
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From our friends at SKyReport.com

Broadcasting and Cable reported that Sens. Orrin Hatch and Patrick Leahy, which lead the Senate Judiciary Committee, may want to expedite authorization of the law limiting DBS delivery of network signals when Congress reconvenes next year.

The law allows DBS companies to deliver out-of-market distant network signals to viewers who can’t get a good signal from a local affiliate. The provision has been a point of contention between satellite TV companies and broadcasters.

The Senate will convene Tuesday, Jan. 20.
 
T

Tahoerob

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silversurfer01973 said:
From our friends at SKyReport.com

Broadcasting and Cable reported that Sens. Orrin Hatch and Patrick Leahy, which lead the Senate Judiciary Committee, may want to expedite authorization of the law limiting DBS delivery of network signals when Congress reconvenes next year.

The law allows DBS companies to deliver out-of-market distant network signals to viewers who can’t get a good signal from a local affiliate. The provision has been a point of contention between satellite TV companies and broadcasters.

The Senate will convene Tuesday, Jan. 20.

Hopefully this can also translate into UPN HD & WB HD as a superstation add on
 
A

Alan Gordon

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Oct 20, 2003
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Tahoerob said:
silversurfer01973 said:
From our friends at SKyReport.com

Broadcasting and Cable reported that Sens. Orrin Hatch and Patrick Leahy, which lead the Senate Judiciary Committee, may want to expedite authorization of the law limiting DBS delivery of network signals when Congress reconvenes next year.

The law allows DBS companies to deliver out-of-market distant network signals to viewers who can’t get a good signal from a local affiliate. The provision has been a point of contention between satellite TV companies and broadcasters.

The Senate will convene Tuesday, Jan. 20.

Hopefully this can also translate into UPN HD & WB HD as a superstation add on


Seems to me that it would hurt the chances of getting ANY networks (SD & HD)...


~Alan
 
Mark Sorensen

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Seems to me that it would hurt the chances of getting ANY networks (SD & HD)...
BINGO!!!

Just my guess.... But I strongly believe that the broadcasters will be working high-speed overtime to eliminate the delivery of ALL out of market broadcast stations.

While you can pay for, subscribe to, and obtain delivery of an out-of-town newspaper to your home, as well as nearly every other product in the universe... those broadcasters desperately want to preserve that local monopoly that they enjoy.

They call it "localism". But in any other business that I can think of, they call it a local "monopoly".

Unless a few million people write, call, email, fax, and get their message to their rascals in Congress in support of distant broadcast station delivery, get ready to waive 'bye-bye' to any distant broadcast stations that you may have.


.........That's just my opinion. I could be wrong.... but I doubt it.
 
A_Noland

A_Noland

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At the same time I think that the DBS providers are working hard to provide locals to all markets. Just in case they lose distant locals.
 
dlsnyder

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Why isn't there a law making it mandatory for broadcasters to have a useable signal in the home of each viewer in their DMA? Perhaps Congress should address this before revisiting the SHVIA, or add that as a provision. Maybe then we will see broadcasters cut us viewers some slack when it comes to out-of-market stations.
 
Stargazer

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Perhaps they want to deny distant networks to people that cannot get their locals at all on an antenna to help rush the satellite providers to provide the locals in all 210 markets.
 
W

Wolfmanjohn

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Dec 18, 2003
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Don't mess with my nets! They are what my wife and I mostly watch. We like being able to watch Leno at 8:30 or a locally blacked out Raiders game. We would much rather have distant nets than locals; bay area media is less than stellar.
 
Tampa8

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My guess, they want to say you cannot get distants if your provider carries the locals. If there is to be a change, again I'm guessing they want the same rules Cable goes by. (Which in some cases might get you out of market stations) Also there has been some talk and posted here or at DBSTALK about some states saying if they have only one network in the State (say one NBC, one CBS etc) they want that channel available to everyone in the State.
 
hancox

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Tampa8 said:
My guess, they want to say you cannot get distants if your provider carries the locals. If there is to be a change, again I'm guessing they want the same rules Cable goes by. (Which in some cases might get you out of market stations) Also there has been some talk and posted here or at DBSTALK about some states saying if they have only one network in the State (say one NBC, one CBS etc) they want that channel available to everyone in the State.


That probably wouldn't work, as states really don't mean squat in TV-land. It's all about the DMA's. My area is a perfect case in point. I live in southwestern CT. We have one of each network affiliate in the state of CT, that each cover the New Haven/Hartford DMA. Fairfield County (where I live), however, is not in the Hartford/New Haven DMA, but the NYC DMA, given its proximity. This works out great for me, as I can get WCBS-DT on Dish Network. :)
 
ScottChez

ScottChez

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Oct 2, 2003
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How about we make things equal.

Cable and Sat.

Both have the same Tax and the Same Local carrage rules.

If cable can have the local channel so can Dish.

everything will be fair.
 
dlsnyder

dlsnyder

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I understand why broadcasters are inherently against distant nets - it is another station taking viewers away that they should have exclusive access to. Its like taking advertising revenue away from the local station. Yet on the other hand the broadcasters, especially those who hold out against making retransmission agreements, need to understand something. The FCC has granted them the PRIVELIGE to conduct business on the public airwaves in the form of a license. With every privelige also comes responsibility. In this case broadcasters have a responsibility to serve the public interest. IMHO serving the public interest does not stop at playing Seinfeld reruns at 6:00pm and infomercials at 3:00 am. Broadcasters should also be held accountable for getting a useable signal out to the area that they are supposed to be serving. They should not be given a free ride by cable, DBS, or anyone when it comes to distributing their signal. The FCC has rules regarding protection of a broadcaster's signal in their primary service area so why don't they have rules protecting the audience as well? If a broadcaster is licensed to serve a particular region then they should be required to provide a quality useable signal to all of that region by any means necessary. If that means subsidising cable or DBS service for each viewer in a white area then so be it. If that means using some alternate means, like MVDDS or on-channel repeaters (with OTA digital signals), then so be it. IMHO a broadcasting license in its current form is little more than a license to make money. If a broadcaster can not or will not provide service to viewers within their DMA then those viewers should be free to watch any stations that are willing to serve them.
 
ats7627

ats7627

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This issue is not about what is fair or right. It is about money, plain and simple. The National Association of Broadcasters is a powerful lobby in Washington and the have very deep pockets. They use that money to "buy" their votes in the forum of campaign contributions. Unless the American public can counter this with their own lobby, we will never be able to purchase out of market broadcasts. I am still waiting for congress to grant me my own exclusive territory, where everyone who lives there, has to buy from me. :D
 
dlsnyder

dlsnyder

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Agreed. In this case, as in so many others where large well financed corporations are involved, our elected officials are not looking out for our best interests. My only point is that if a local broadcaster is going to hold me hostage to get their programming exclusively from them then they should have a responsibility to provide me with a high quality signal. Realistically I know that will not happen any time soon but perhaps some day...

I'd better start writing my congressman now! Is Mary Bono on the Commerce committee?
 
Tampa8

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hancox said:
Tampa8 said:
My guess, they want to say you cannot get distants if your provider carries the locals. If there is to be a change, again I'm guessing they want the same rules Cable goes by. (Which in some cases might get you out of market stations) Also there has been some talk and posted here or at DBSTALK about some states saying if they have only one network in the State (say one NBC, one CBS etc) they want that channel available to everyone in the State.


That probably wouldn't work, as states really don't mean squat in TV-land. It's all about the DMA's. My area is a perfect case in point. I live in southwestern CT. We have one of each network affiliate in the state of CT, that each cover the New Haven/Hartford DMA. Fairfield County (where I live), however, is not in the Hartford/New Haven DMA, but the NYC DMA, given its proximity. This works out great for me, as I can get WCBS-DT on Dish Network. :)

It is the Congressmen/Senators who are talking about having a "State" network channel available to everyone in some States - and they DO have a say. It's only about DMA'S because that is how the law currently is. That can be changed or modified.
 
dlsnyder

dlsnyder

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Correct me if I am wrong but aren't DMAs just a conveniant way for AC Nielsen to determine ratings for a given area? They have no legal status under federal law and are only loosely determined by geography.
 
J

James Long

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Oct 24, 2003
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The FCC has a tendacy to respect market areas as defined by others. The Rand McNally "Major Trading Area" and "Basic Trading Area" divisions were used for assigning PCS and other wireless licenses. The easier it is to have someone else define the market, the better.

JL
 
J

James Long

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Oct 24, 2003
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It isn't the one they are talking about, but here's an interesting bill on the table:

HR 3511 IH
To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to require vendors of multichannel services to protect the privacy of their customers, and for other purposes.

"While DBS providers and providers of digital video recording services offer consumers services similar to those offered by cable operators over cable systems, competitors utilizing these technologies do not currently have to comply with the privacy protections in section 631 because such provisions apply only to cable operators.

"Consistent with the policy endorsed by Congress in enacting the Telecommunications Act of 1996 of regulating entities based upon the service which is provided rather than the technology used to deliver that service, the public interest compels that privacy protections for consumers should be consistently applied irrespective of who the provider is, or what technology they employ to deliver services to consumers."


JL
 
J

JP Threw

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Sep 9, 2003
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What about persons with R V excemptions? Will this change affect them? Just wondering.
 

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