Any Info On The Disappearing Philly Locals?

Discussion in 'DirecTV TiVo Powered PVRs & Receivers' started by super dave, Jan 2, 2006.

  1. Jan 2, 2006 #1 of 31
    super dave

    super dave Friend Of The Court

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    When I was checking out the Program Guide last night I noticed that 3 of the higher PBS stations are listed as "No Longer Available On DTV." I can't seem to find any info on why, anyone have any insider info for the rest of us?
    Thanx.
     
  2. Jan 2, 2006 #2 of 31
    newsposter

    newsposter Poster of News

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    I'm curious too. Just a guess would be that someone forgot to sign something.
     
  3. Jan 2, 2006 #3 of 31
    kroddy

    kroddy New Member

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    Philadelphia...
    Called D* tonight using my new "priority" customer service card... call was answered rather quickly, however at first the guy tried desperately to fob me off with "we have no information"

    Eventually after I threatened to call Comcast next he put me on hold and came back telling me that they did not receive the required paperwork back from those station so legally they can no longer carry those channels.

    I suggested someone from D* should chase them up, but he replied that D* now have no plans to carry these channels in the future...

    my own interpretation of this is that D* will be quite thrilled to cut down on bandwidth carrying all these minority channels if they can use this paperwork lapse as a way to wriggle out of "must carry"... unfortuanately since WLVT is the only channel that carries my wife's favorite show this will probably be the straw that breaks the camels back for me & Direct: I've grown so tired of the "lots of new HD channels soon" promise that I'm about ready to give the Comcast HD-DVR a try.

    Followup: got this email in reply to my query sent to one of the stations:

    Dear Mr.xxxxx,

    We are aware of the problem with DirecTV and are doing everything we can to fix it as soon as possible.

    We are sorry for any inconvenience this has caused.

    WLVT
     
  4. Jan 3, 2006 #4 of 31
    super dave

    super dave Friend Of The Court

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    Thanks for the detailed answer. I was hoping they were making room for HD, but they are dragging their feet. I don't want OTA HD, I want everyting supplied by one pipe, like my FIL has with Comcast.
     
  5. Jan 3, 2006 #5 of 31
    blhirsch

    blhirsch Tivo-riffic!

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    Weird, look at that.... Three channels have the "XXXX is no longer available on DirecTV" in the guide: 39, 53, and 62

    However, channel 39 WORKS, but the guide says "WLVT is no longer available on DirecTV."

    Channel 53, WMCN DOESN'T work and is accompanied by a screen that says something about their right to carry the channel expiring on dec 31. Same goes for Channel 62, WWSI.

    Oh well. Honestly? I only watch 12, 35, and 39 for local PBS. I don't think I've ever watched anything on those other channels.
     
  6. Jan 3, 2006 #6 of 31
    ebonovic

    ebonovic has gone his way...

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    Tinley...
    According to what I was just reading over at www.dbstalk.com
    http://www.dbstalk.com/showthread.php?p=498077

    It appears that January 1, 2006 started the new "Must Carry" Period from 01/01/2006 - 12/31/2008

    From what I have seen in that thread, all stations needed to reapply for Must Carry status during a window last year. If they didn't re-file, DirecTV (and any other DBS) was not required to carry them by law any more.

    And DirecTV is opting to take some of them down, to regain space on the SATs.
     
  7. Jan 3, 2006 #7 of 31
    kroddy

    kroddy New Member

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    Philadelphia...
    Late last night 39 had the same "no longer have the rights" screen as the others

    If it is on now then it sounds like they might have got it sorted and switched it back on, but will probably take a while for the guide data to repopulate.
     
  8. Jan 4, 2006 #8 of 31
    newsposter

    newsposter Poster of News

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    Can someone tell me how not wanting your channel to be on DTV helps increase viewership? in theory something every station wants. Or does pbs not care about how many people watch? Does DTV pay these stations to carry them or does DTV pay the stations to carry them?

    can you tell i know zippo about tv :) My logic tells me tv stations should pay DTV to carry them so that it increases their viewership but something tells me it's the other way around. Which just isn't right.
     
  9. Jan 4, 2006 #9 of 31
    ebonovic

    ebonovic has gone his way...

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    Tinley...
    If I read the other threads on it correctly...

    If you apply for "must carry" DirecTV must foot the bill for it...
    If you don't... the station creats a re-distribution contract and then pays in accordance to the terms of the contract.


    Not sure why any station within a must carry area, would not have applied....
     
  10. Greg Bimson

    Greg Bimson New Member

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    I don't remember the exact rules, but every three years, a station must elect either retransmission consent (and then enter into a carriage agreement with the distributor, so no FCC paperwork is required) or must-carry (where the distributor must carry the channel without payment nor contract, and paperwork is filed to both the FCC and the distributor).

    The new cycle did just begin on 1 January, 2006. If these stations did not supply the paperwork in time (I believe 60 days before the end of the year), then these stations can be dropped. Since there wasn't any paperwork, these stations are now under retransmission consent and can only be carried with a carriage contract. DirecTV is under no obligation to sign a contract. I even believe if the station is NCE (non-commercial educational, like PBS) that they can only elect must-carry.

    I am guessing a few stations have gotten lax in filing their paperwork.
     
  11. Phanatic

    Phanatic New Member

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    This was in today's Morning Call (Allentown, PA):

    DirecTV mistakenly pulls plug on PBS 39

    Lehigh Valley DirecTV subscribers looking for local public television station PBS 39 on Sunday and Monday may have been surprised to see, instead of Big Bird or Elmo, a message on-screen saying the station's contract with DirecTV had expired Dec. 31, 2005.

    However, it was just a paperwork glitch that shut PBS 39 off the biggest U.S. satellite television provider for two days, according to WLVT TV's director of technology Dan Labert.

    Labert says PBS 39 is carried by DirecTV at no cost to the station as "a courtesy" for the Philadelphia market.

    He said in July, the station sent a standard request for carriage form due Oct. 1 to DirecTV, but the form was lost by DirecTV. Officials from DirecTV were unavailable for comment.

    Labert said he talked to DirecTV officials on Dec. 28 and thought things had been straightened out, but at midnight New Year's Eve DirecTV pulled the plug on PBS 39.

    "When the ball dropped we went off the air," Labert said.

    Labert said the station received a dozen or so complaints from customers before being reinstated on DirecTV early Tuesday morning.
     
  12. dswallow

    dswallow Save the ModeratŠ¾r TCF Club

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    I think you have it a little backwards.

    "Must carry" means that DirecTV would have to carry the signal, but the local station has to provide a suitable signal to DirecTV's facilities.

    Alternately a station can elect not to use must carry and then if DirecTV wants to carry the station, they must negotiate a contract with DirecTV if they want to be carried.

    Basically a CBS, NBC or ABC station or other popular station would probably never elect must carry because they could get paid by DirecTV for their content since subscribers would demand access to it. A small independent station would likely elect must carry because they want access to the subscribers and feel they wouldn't have enough bargaining power to get DirecTV to pay them to carry.
     
  13. ebonovic

    ebonovic has gone his way...

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    Tinley...
    I didn't think it sounded right when I read it the first time, but no one over there (www.dbstalk.com)...

    Thanks for the cleanup.
     
  14. TheBigDogs

    TheBigDogs Member

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    Given the large number of "lost" rebates, it would appear that DTV has a problem in their mail room. I wonder if Ruppert has one of his younger offspring working there?
     
  15. kroddy

    kroddy New Member

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    Philadelphia...
    That's odd: I'm still getting the "no longer available" screen :(
     
  16. newsposter

    newsposter Poster of News

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    im not receiving the 3 channels either
     
  17. biker

    biker Outlaw

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    Atlantic...
    Same here.
     
  18. Phanatic

    Phanatic New Member

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    How quickly things turn around... seems like it was on for a little bit, but is now back off. Another article from today's (Thursday) Morning Call:

    DirecTV drops PBS-39 from lineup
     
  19. JammasterC

    JammasterC giggty, giggty

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    Channels 39, 53, and 62 are no longer available for me either.
     
  20. phoenix_one

    phoenix_one New Member

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    Dec 14, 2003
    Philadelphia...
    It sucks because my wife is addicted to the soaps and now wants for me change to the PARA TODOS package. (Need to get a new oval dish)

    I was checking and I will be losing some channels because of this, specifically G4!!!!


    AAARRGGHHH!!!!!!!!!!
     

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