I live in Raleigh, NC and Time Warner Cable seems to have copy protection turned on at times for a channel that is available OTA. I record Jimmy Kimmel Live
from 11:33 p.m. to 2:05 a.m. from our local ABC affiliate, WTVD HD, from the cable box. OTA it is 11.1, but from the Time Warner Cable box it is 1111. I can record these programs OK, but when Katie
ends, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire
comes on, and my Pioneer DVR pauses recording, saying the show is copy-protected. Fortunately I am not interested in that show anyway, it's just that I catch the first few minutes of it at the end of recording the earlier shows. I am not even trying to record the HDMI output, since my Pioneer DVR does not support it; I am recording the output of the cable box to my Pioneer DVR using composite cables, and yet I am seeing copy protection issues with two OTA channels.
I do not currently use Tivo but I thought this would be the best place to ask about this because Tivo users will certainly have the most experience with copy protection. I read somewhere that copy protection (or maybe it is CCI?) is not allowed on OTA stations, even if those stations are rebroadcast on cable.
The same thing happens when our local MeTV affiliate, OTA 50.2 (Time Warner Cable 151) airs The Dick Van Dyke Show.
Suddenly the copy protection (or CCI, or whatever it is) is turned on. This only happens when I try to record from the cable box. If I use my Magnavox recorder which has a digital tuner and can tune the channels directly, it does not have a problem with copy protection.
Still, my understanding is that the cable companies are not allowed to restrict copying on programs that air on channels that are available OTA, even when they are rebroadcast on cable. Note that this only happens when I try to record from the Cisco cable boxes. For some reason there is no copy protection on the Scientific Atlanta cable boxes, even though Cisco took over Scientific Atlanta. I am guessing it is because the Scientific Atlanta boxes are older and maybe don't have the firmware needed to support copy protection? Since the copy protection does not occur when using my Magnavox DVR's digital tuner, and it does not occur with the Scientific Atlanta cable boxes, it appears to only be an issue for the Cisco cable boxes, and right now it is only for a few programs on the ABC affiliate channel and the MeTV affiliate channel, but I am worried this is going to expand.
Can I file a complaint against Time Warner Cable with the FCC, and if so, how do I do that? There is no point in complaining to TWC--I could not even get them to fix issues I had with my cable signal in the past. My complaints about that went nowhere and I kept calling until a supervisor told me it would be better if I hired an electrician to fix the signal problem. If they are non-responsive to signal problem reports, they certainly are not going to be responsive to my complaints about the copy protection on the OTA channels.