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Old 01-24-2014, 04:56 PM   #1
mobilelawyer
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Mediacom Copy Protection?

I don't see any recent "copy protected" posts, so everyone gets to hear my story.

I have a TiVo Roamio, and often use the TiVo desktop software to transfer movies and tv shows from the dvr to my networked hard drive. Mediacom recently had a rash of complaints on their customer forums regarding the sudden loss of pay channels. They had to send signals out to many boxes to re-pair the various devices and my TiVo was among them.

Now, I have noticed that when I record on the Movie Channel or the NFL channel, the shows are marked "copy protected" when access through the TiVo desktop software, and therefore cannot be transferred to another drive.

I asked the Mediacom board if this was intentional and got an "I am not aware" type of answer. Maybe not a good sign.

Has Mediacom joined the dark side and plans to copy protect some or all of their programming? Does anyone have any insight? I will be very disappointed if the answer turns out to be "yes".
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Old 01-24-2014, 05:04 PM   #2
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Try something like TBS, TNT or USA. The Movie Channel is what I'd think of as a premium, and there's a chance the NFL requires copy protection be enabled.
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:43 PM   #3
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Some are and some aren't

NFL is protected, as are any of the Showtime/Movie Channel titles. But, as I said, this is only in the past few days. For example, I had already dubbed some of the "A Football Life Series", but only the show recorded a couple of days ago shows up as "Copy Protected".

I had previously dubbed Showtime and Movie Channel offerings without issue.

I am still not sure it is an issue created solely by the snafu with the cablecards, or maybe implementation of the copy protection is what knocked so many channels. Who knows.
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Old 01-24-2014, 10:37 PM   #4
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One of my 3 TivoHD's lost HBO and all 3 lost Showtime/TMC.

Never recorded anything on Showtime/TMC (which is why I canceled during the issues) but HBO has been copy protected since I moved into my currently place (November 2012). I have never been able to transfer those recordings....
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Old 01-25-2014, 12:25 AM   #5
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Quote:
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NFL is protected, as are any of the Showtime/Movie Channel titles. But, as I said, this is only in the past few days. For example, I had already dubbed some of the "A Football Life Series", but only the show recorded a couple of days ago shows up as "Copy Protected".

I had previously dubbed Showtime and Movie Channel offerings without issue.

I am still not sure it is an issue created solely by the snafu with the cablecards, or maybe implementation of the copy protection is what knocked so many channels. Who knows.
Stuff like that should have been copy protected all along.

At least I'm sure that the execs at those channels feel so, and they probably have a contract with any cable company that carries them that says that they have to be.

Stuff like TNT, USA, etc. they may not be contractually obligated to copy protect it but do so anyway just because cable companies like to be total richards.

So apparently you've been able to copy stuff you shouldn't be able to because they've also been technically inept, and only recently realized it.
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Old 01-25-2014, 05:40 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mobilelawyer View Post
I don't see any recent "copy protected" posts, so everyone gets to hear my story.

I have a TiVo Roamio, and often use the TiVo desktop software to transfer movies and tv shows from the dvr to my networked hard drive. Mediacom recently had a rash of complaints on their customer forums regarding the sudden loss of pay channels. They had to send signals out to many boxes to re-pair the various devices and my TiVo was among them.

Now, I have noticed that when I record on the Movie Channel or the NFL channel, the shows are marked "copy protected" when access through the TiVo desktop software, and therefore cannot be transferred to another drive.

I asked the Mediacom board if this was intentional and got an "I am not aware" type of answer. Maybe not a good sign.

Has Mediacom joined the dark side and plans to copy protect some or all of their programming? Does anyone have any insight? I will be very disappointed if the answer turns out to be "yes".
I'm Mediacom here, and this has been the case now for at least six months to a year if not longer. Nothing new...
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Old 01-25-2014, 05:53 PM   #7
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Woe is Me

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I'm Mediacom here, and this has been the case now for at least six months to a year if not longer. Nothing new...
I have only been a Mediacom customer since June. Everything was in the clear until last week, when a rash of complaints hit the Mediacom boards that people were not able to tune their pay channels (I was one of them).

Until that change, Mediacom did not require the card to be paired to the device. Now they do. That cut all the premiums off until pairing could be done. Now the content is marked copy protected.

The decision to require pairing is what made these flags active. So be it. I guess I may be going back to Directv.

Anybody wanna buy a Roamio?
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Old 01-25-2014, 06:02 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by mobilelawyer View Post
I have only been a Mediacom customer since June. Everything was in the clear until last week, when a rash of complaints hit the Mediacom boards that people were not able to tune their pay channels (I was one of them).

Until that change, Mediacom did not require the card to be paired to the device. Now they do. That cut all the premiums off until pairing could be done. Now the content is marked copy protected.

The decision to require pairing is what made these flags active. So be it. I guess I may be going back to Directv.

Anybody wanna buy a Roamio?
You got it backwards. The decision to flag those channels is what caused you to have to pair the cards. It was likely outside of Mediacom's control, HBO and the other premiums require that these channels be flagged CCI copy once/never. They likely just audited and found they weren't set.

Why would this make you dump your Roamio and Mediacom? The TiVo available from DirecTV is severely restricted when compared to the Roamio. There is no copying off the box and there is no streaming from the box. It's basically a Series 3 with no MRV features.
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Old 01-25-2014, 06:22 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by mobilelawyer View Post
I have only been a Mediacom customer since June. Everything was in the clear until last week, when a rash of complaints hit the Mediacom boards that people were not able to tune their pay channels (I was one of them).

Until that change, Mediacom did not require the card to be paired to the device. Now they do. That cut all the premiums off until pairing could be done. Now the content is marked copy protected.

The decision to require pairing is what made these flags active. So be it. I guess I may be going back to Directv.

Anybody wanna buy a Roamio?
As Joseph says, you're waaay off base with your accusations. I'm the farthest thing from a Mediacom fanboy, but this isn't their fault. Like I said, I've seen these copy protection flags for months and months....just accept it and move on.
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Old 01-26-2014, 09:14 AM   #10
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From my understanding, having a TiVo mini in your setup (along with a 4-tuner premiere and/or Roamio) will solve this on some level as they will allow you to "stream" ALL channels and content; premium (HBO), extended (NFL) or basic (TNT). This may be your only option.
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Old 01-26-2014, 06:29 PM   #11
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I Was Able to copy all programming on Directv

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You got it backwards. The decision to flag those channels is what caused you to have to pair the cards. It was likely outside of Mediacom's control, HBO and the other premiums require that these channels be flagged CCI copy once/never. They likely just audited and found they weren't set.

Why would this make you dump your Roamio and Mediacom? The TiVo available from DirecTV is severely restricted when compared to the Roamio. There is no copying off the box and there is no streaming from the box. It's basically a Series 3 with no MRV features.
We are probably arguing over a very technical point. So you are saying that the NFL Channel and Showtime/The Movie Channel just happened to mutually decide together to enforce the copy flags, and they only did it last week, together? I doubt that. Maybe they both had those requirements in their contract with Mediacom for some time, but it was never apparent to the customers, like me, who never saw any of the flags before. And the flags did not appear until last week, when a large number of customers lost their premium channels, and had to have their cards paired to the specific devices to get them back.

Before that requirement, you I could switch a Mediacom card between devices, and they would work with no problem. But when pairing was required last week, the "Copy Protected" notice appeared for the first time.

If Mediacom is contractually required to enable the flags, I agree. There's nothing they can do about it, and any anger directed at Mediacom on that issue is truly misdirected. But my disappointment lies more with what I perceive to be the obfuscation of the issue on the Mediacom User Support Boards by the Mediacom

Instead of telling the whole truth: "The content providers required us to make technical changes so that copy protection is now enabled." When customers (like me) asked on the board what had happened to cause so many pay subscribers to lose service at one time, the only answer I saw is something to the effect "We are unaware of the source of the problem". And then when I asked about the "copy protection" notice, I got "The providers set that flag, and Mediacom has nothing to do with it". While technically true, that is not the full truth, which would have been the simpler answer above, which you have also confirmed as true. You told me to live with it. They tried to avoid saying that. At least you were honest.

I had Directv and was able to use a Hauppauge capture card to make high definition copies of anything I recorded. I will admit, though, that the unrestricted TiVo to go was much more versatile, and I really, really think the TiVo hardware is in every way superior.

Still, this decision deprives me of a feature that I have really enjoyed, and I cannot just move along without some grumbling. Maybe I'll get over it.
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Old 01-26-2014, 07:55 PM   #12
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We are probably arguing over a very technical point. So you are saying that the NFL Channel and Showtime/The Movie Channel just happened to mutually decide together to enforce the copy flags, and they only did it last week, together? I doubt that. Maybe they both had those requirements in their contract with Mediacom for some time, but it was never apparent to the customers, like me, who never saw any of the flags before. And the flags did not appear until last week, when a large number of customers lost their premium channels, and had to have their cards paired to the specific devices to get them back.

Before that requirement, you I could switch a Mediacom card between devices, and they would work with no problem. But when pairing was required last week, the "Copy Protected" notice appeared for the first time.

If Mediacom is contractually required to enable the flags, I agree. There's nothing they can do about it, and any anger directed at Mediacom on that issue is truly misdirected. But my disappointment lies more with what I perceive to be the obfuscation of the issue on the Mediacom User Support Boards by the Mediacom

Instead of telling the whole truth: "The content providers required us to make technical changes so that copy protection is now enabled." When customers (like me) asked on the board what had happened to cause so many pay subscribers to lose service at one time, the only answer I saw is something to the effect "We are unaware of the source of the problem". And then when I asked about the "copy protection" notice, I got "The providers set that flag, and Mediacom has nothing to do with it". While technically true, that is not the full truth, which would have been the simpler answer above, which you have also confirmed as true. You told me to live with it. They tried to avoid saying that. At least you were honest.

I had Directv and was able to use a Hauppauge capture card to make high definition copies of anything I recorded. I will admit, though, that the unrestricted TiVo to go was much more versatile, and I really, really think the TiVo hardware is in every way superior.

Still, this decision deprives me of a feature that I have really enjoyed, and I cannot just move along without some grumbling. Maybe I'll get over it.
Does that capture card not work with the TiVo?
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Old 01-26-2014, 08:09 PM   #13
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We'll just have to see about that
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Old 01-26-2014, 11:14 PM   #14
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We are probably arguing over a very technical point. So you are saying that the NFL Channel and Showtime/The Movie Channel just happened to mutually decide together to enforce the copy flags, and they only did it last week, together? I doubt that. Maybe they both had those requirements in their contract with Mediacom for some time, but it was never apparent to the customers, like me, who never saw any of the flags before. And the flags did not appear until last week, when a large number of customers lost their premium channels, and had to have their cards paired to the specific devices to get them back.

Before that requirement, you I could switch a Mediacom card between devices, and they would work with no problem. But when pairing was required last week, the "Copy Protected" notice appeared for the first time.

If Mediacom is contractually required to enable the flags, I agree. There's nothing they can do about it, and any anger directed at Mediacom on that issue is truly misdirected. But my disappointment lies more with what I perceive to be the obfuscation of the issue on the Mediacom User Support Boards by the Mediacom

Instead of telling the whole truth: "The content providers required us to make technical changes so that copy protection is now enabled." When customers (like me) asked on the board what had happened to cause so many pay subscribers to lose service at one time, the only answer I saw is something to the effect "We are unaware of the source of the problem". And then when I asked about the "copy protection" notice, I got "The providers set that flag, and Mediacom has nothing to do with it". While technically true, that is not the full truth, which would have been the simpler answer above, which you have also confirmed as true. You told me to live with it. They tried to avoid saying that. At least you were honest.

I had Directv and was able to use a Hauppauge capture card to make high definition copies of anything I recorded. I will admit, though, that the unrestricted TiVo to go was much more versatile, and I really, really think the TiVo hardware is in every way superior.

Still, this decision deprives me of a feature that I have really enjoyed, and I cannot just move along without some grumbling. Maybe I'll get over it.
Did NFL and Showtime decide last week at the same time? Of course not. It's been in the contract with Mediacom since they last signed it. What is most likely is that someone did an audit, found it was misconfigured, and set the configurations properly.

Does it suck? Yes, but that is the lot in life we've drawn by being adults with large amounts of disposable income who were born in the United States and this is the biggest problem we have to deal with.

Now as far as the customer support issue, sure, they bungled it. But, some things to keep in mind: Mediacom is a small cable company, so they probably have very few cablecard users, and this impacted probably on the order of tens of customers. Secondly, the content of agreements with channels are usually confidential, so they can't say "xyz channel requires us to mark it as copy protected".

Is it so hard to simply call in and get your cablecard paired properly as it should have been in the first place? Yes, you might not be able to use the out of home features of the Roamio for those channels. If it is so important to you, I suggest adding a slingbox to the mix.
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Old 01-27-2014, 09:41 AM   #15
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Don't Want to be labeled a Mediacom Basher

I am quite invested in the service and really do not want to change. I own my own TiVo and Samsung media box (the new one that takes cable cards), and they have worked quite well for me. The TiVo Roamio, in my opinion is one of the best hardware investments I have made. That is why it stings to lose a feature that I have grown accustomed to.

Streaming is not so much my concern as cataloging sports events, tv shows, and some movies on my home network. I could transfer them to my HTPC, edit out commercials, and archive them on a networked server. I can still do that, but with a few less channels being available.
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Old 01-28-2014, 12:50 PM   #16
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Myself, I dotn use tivos program I use the pytivo one. And have never ran in to any issues with flags as of yet. Now I don't transfer anything from NFL network or showtime. but every other channel up to and including HBO has been fine.

Now I haven't done any of this in the last few weeks so take my comments with a grain of salt.
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Old 01-31-2014, 02:57 PM   #17
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I have to comment on this as I did on Mediacom 's support forum, Mediacom didn't care at all about the copy protection until this month when they changed it as there is was something else that Mediacom started doing this month which was they started their own TiVo service.

They simply do not want the customer owned TiVo from competing with their TiVo service so they followed the letter of the law and took away a feature that Mediacom tivo owners have enjoyed from the very beginning. Their TiVo solution isn't effected by this change as its comprised of a single TiVo with multiple Mini boxes.

It was all about increasing their market appeal and share, nothing else otherwise they would have done this year's ago when they begun to distribute cable cards.

They have gone back and forth with different reasons for this change until I pointed out their strategy and since then they have had no reply which implies to me that they are hoping my reply will eventually scroll off the list of active topics.
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Old 01-31-2014, 03:16 PM   #18
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So you can transfer a show to your pc using a mediacom Tivo?
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Old 01-31-2014, 03:33 PM   #19
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So you can transfer a show to your pc using a mediacom Tivo?
I can not say for sure, what I was told by a Mediacom rep was that the Tivo desktop software was not supported along with also being told you can't transfer from their TiVo to your own if you have both in your network. I have seen one post by a customer trying to get the two combined as they each have their own MAK and despite their initial documentation claiming the two could be combined, they have since stated this is not possible.

http://mediacomcable.com/CustomerSup...?topic=18178.0

Their tivo firmware is customized as for example it allows you purchase PPV with the remote control.

Yes, they were within their legal right to clamp down, it's more than suspicious in their timing doing such. I have asked for the service but was told no as they will only sign up new customers and not existing ones, so I can not say what it will or won't do.
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Old 01-31-2014, 08:19 PM   #20
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I have had absolutely NO CHANGE in copy protection issues with my TiVo boxes (HD and Premiere XL4) using Mediacom service over the past year or more...
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:02 PM   #21
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I have had absolutely NO CHANGE in copy protection issues with my TiVo boxes (HD and Premiere XL4) using Mediacom service over the past year or more...
Does that mean you can still copy any shows to the PC you want to, or that you've been unable to do so all along?
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:30 PM   #22
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Does that mean you can still copy any shows to the PC you want to, or that you've been unable to do so all along?
It means I can copy the shows that haven't been copy protected all along. Very few of the channels I get (a few premium ones, e.g. Starz HD, Encore HD) are copy protected (and then not all the movies on that particular channel are)....but this has been no change from the way it's been for at least a year as I mentioned. It apparently depends on the movie...for instance, I'm looking at several movies from Starz HD on my TiVo Transfer list -- one is copy protected and another isn't.
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:39 PM   #23
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It means I can copy the shows that haven't been copy protected all along. Very few of the channels I get (a few premium ones, e.g. Starz HD, Encore HD) are copy protected (and then not all the movies on that particular channel are)....but this has been no change from the way it's been for at least a year as I mentioned. It apparently depends on the movie...for instance, I'm looking at several movies from Starz HD on my TiVo Transfer list -- one is copy protected and another isn't.
See, that's the difference. Up to mid January I could record ANY channel I wanted to, HMO, ABC or ANYTHING and then transfer ANYTHING to my PC, another Tivo,etc but then suddenly a large majority of TiVo owners started getting the msg "to start service please contact your cable company" when we tuned our tivos to a premium channel which required a call in to pair the card as if a new cable card had been inserted.
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:46 PM   #24
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See, that's the difference. Up to mid January I could record ANY channel I wanted to, HMO, ABC or ANYTHING and then transfer ANYTHING to my PC, another Tivo,etc but then suddenly a large majority of TiVo owners started getting the msg "to start service please contact your cable company" when we tuned our tivos to a premium channel which required a call in to pair the card as if a new cable card had been inserted.
Mid January THIS year? or last year? I've been able to transfer free and clear on 99% of the shows I record for as long as I can remember. Very, very few have the flag...
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:56 PM   #25
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Sorry, yes this month or what's left of it!

What is weird I thought was even movies I recorded a couple months ago can't be transfered which is why I noticed it as my son transferred Iron Man 3 last month to his tivo but deleted it. Last week he wanted to watch it again since I hadn't deleted it, when he tried, it has the red crossed circle next to it.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:00 PM   #26
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Myself, I dotn use tivos program I use the pytivo one. And have never ran in to any issues with flags as of yet.
The copy-prohibited flag is enforced by the TiVo box. There's no difference in its behavior whether you're using TiVo Desktop or pyTivo, or KMTTG, or the browser interface, or etc.
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Old 02-02-2014, 03:44 AM   #27
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See, that's the difference. Up to mid January I could record ANY channel I wanted to, HMO, ABC or ANYTHING and then transfer ANYTHING to my PC, another Tivo,etc but then suddenly a large majority of TiVo owners started getting the msg "to start service please contact your cable company" when we tuned our tivos to a premium channel which required a call in to pair the card as if a new cable card had been inserted.
It may have happened at the same time that they implemented MSO provided TiVos, but it doesn't have anything to do with that. They would have been required to CCI-flag those channels in their contracts. They were misconfigured. You were benefiting from a bank error in your favor, but the error was corrected. Would you have rather not been able to use that feature for the past however long you've been a TiVo + Mediacom customer? They simply audited their configurations (which MIGHT have been done because they were rolling out their own TiVos, but that doesn't mean it was done in malice towards retail TiVo customers) and found that it was misconfigured in your market. As the other Mediacom customer posted, his market has had the CCI flags set properly for some time now. If it were some grand Mediacom conspiracy, don't you think it would have been that way across all of their systems?

Don't blame malice for that which can be attributed to incompetence...especially in the cable TV world.
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Current: TiVo HD w/lifetime, 2 x 2 Tuner Premieres

Former: S1, S2 TiVos, UltimateTV, SD DirecTiVo (x3), SA 8300HD w/Passport Echo, DirecTV HR-24 (x2) , DISH 722k, DirecTV Genie + 2 mini
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