CBS blacked out on AT&T

Discussion in 'TiVo Coffee House - TiVo Discussion' started by alexofindy, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. alexofindy

    alexofindy Member

    Apr 15, 2010
    According to the morning news, CBS is blacked out on AT&T due to a contract dispute. CBS is still available, of course, OTA.

    Last time I checked, Tivo's are incompantible with AT&T in general, so this is a non-event for TiVo.

    But it illustrates a point. Increasingly, there are contract disputes which temporarily black out broadcast stations from cable providers. In these situations, it's nice to have OTA capability as a fall-back/back-up.

    My circa 2010 Premiere XL can tune both cable and OTA stations. But no current Tivo's have this capability; for a few models it's one or the other, but I don't believe there are any current Tivo's which can do what my 2010 Tivo can do. Which is the major reason why I have not "updated" my Tivo.
  2. TheRatPatrol

    TheRatPatrol Member

    Feb 21, 2003
    Phoenix, AZ
    Was there any reason why they stopped offering both inputs on the TiVo’s?

    It would be nice to have both, although I don’t see a lot of disputes between local channels and local cable company’s. Maybe to get sub channels the cable company doesn’t offer, or if there’s an outage?
  3. ajwees41

    ajwees41 Well-Known Member

    May 7, 2006

    This is nothing new it's been going on for years
    cowboys2002 and jrtroo like this.
  4. fcfc2

    fcfc2 Well-Known Member

    Feb 19, 2015
    I suspect it was never a very popular feature and most folks go either OTA or CATV and those folks often look for more tuners. Disputes have been happening between suppliers and CATV providers since the beginning, but often they don't result in long service delays some end as soon as they start.
  5. NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

    May 2, 2015
    Yes, it sure is nice to have free OTA as a backup. This is why DirecTV is giving out their new LCC (local channel connector), a small OTA dual-tuner dongle, plus a small flat antenna for free to customers in any market affected by a blackout. There are two big blackout/retransmission disputes they've got right now -- one with Nexstar started a week or so ago and now this one with CBS.

    The LCC doesn't work with every model DirecTV receiver/DVR but it does with most currently in use, I believe. Plug it in and the OTA channels are integrated into the satellite channel guide, recordable to DVR.

    AT&T also recently donated half a million bucks to Locast, a non-profit that is expanding among the largest TV markets in the country to retransmit local OTA signals via the internet. AT&T also auto-installed the Locast app on all of their DirecTV and Uverse TV receivers that could support it. So those folks don't even need to use an antenna, just launch the Locast app and watch free live local TV (although it's accessible only inside the Locast app and cannot be recorded or watched on-demand).

    I really think we're going to see more and more free or low-cost OTA tuners distributed by cable TV operators. DISH does it too. Check out their AirTV product that streams OTA locals around the home. Just plug in a spare USB hard drive and, bam, you got free OTA DVR service too. Really, why wouldn't all cable TV operators get on this trend, except maybe for Comcast, who owns NBC and its largest local affiliates?
    compuguy, PSU_Sudzi and mschnebly like this.
  6. Luke M

    Luke M Member

    Nov 5, 2002
    In many areas cable companies don't carry all locals, in fact, I believe it's actually illegal (might be an exemption for PBS).
  7. ncted

    ncted A leaf on the wind

    May 13, 2007
    Durham, NC
    It is complicated. I am not saying what is happening is legal in all cases, but it depends a lot on what the station owners want.
  8. Mikeguy

    Mikeguy Well-Known Member

    Jul 28, 2005
    That's just fascinating--such a war!
    compuguy and NashGuy like this.
  9. TonyD79

    TonyD79 Well-Known Member

    Jan 4, 2002
    Columbia, MD
    Typically local disputes aren’t really local. They are stations owned by national entities like the major networks or companies like Sinclair.
  10. ajwees41

    ajwees41 Well-Known Member

    May 7, 2006
    nope the local channels ABC NBC CBS FOX can request must carry or get paid for the cable/satellite provider to carry them
  11. Luke M

    Luke M Member

    Nov 5, 2002
    They can also demand that competing local stations not be carried. e.g. if an area has two CBS stations, one of them can block the other from being carried. There are a few exceptions to this, but that's the general rule.

    Since this blocking doesn't respect signal strength, it's entirely possible for the blocked channel to be more easily received than the cable carried channel.
  12. unclehonkey

    unclehonkey Well-Known Member

    Dec 20, 2012
    Mankato, MN
    Most DMA markets (as defined by Nielsen) only has one set of networks. Neighboring markets are a different animal. In that case that is where Significant Viewed comes in. So yes the station in the DMA can request the cable companies not to carry the out of market nets but if they are considered Sig Viewed then the cable company has the right to carry both. Here in Mankato, MN both Charter and Consoldiated carry WCCO & KMSP (CBS & FOX Minneapolis) alongside KEYC CBS & FOX (the only station in the market). Charter does have it when both are showing the same network program KEYC does have syndex exclusive so they overlay KEYC over WCCO or KMSP. Consolidated does not do that (I know as I have them). KEYC has actually petitioned the FCC to force Charter/Spectrum to drop WCCO, KMSP and KAAL (ABC Rochester/Austin, MN) due to the duplication (KAAL carries 3 big syndicated shows that KEYC also does in Kelly & Ryan, Ellen and Rachael Ray) but that is still pending last I checked.

    The only markets I can think of that have 2 different affiliates of same network owned by 2 separate companies are all ABC's
    Tampa (WFTS and WWSB)
    Grand Rapids, Michigan (WZZM and WOTV)
    Lincoln and Grand Island, Nebraska (KLKN and KHGI)

    But in most cases cable only gets one of the two. satellite legally gives them both as they carry all stations in a market

    There is WCVB in Boston and WMUR in Manchester which is same market but they are co-owned
  13. NorthAlabama

    NorthAlabama tabasco rules

    Apr 19, 2012
    sweet home, al
    this is why i bought my pxl over models with more tuners, and why i still have it today. at the time, comcast was slow adding local sub-channels, and it was convenient having them integrated with cable channels in the guide.
  14. phox_mulder

    phox_mulder I get paid 2watch TV

    Feb 23, 2006
    Salt Lake...
    Current dispute is with stations owned by Nexstar.
    Locally it's the ABC and CW affiliates, and they are running crawls all day over programming saying to call ATT and DirecTV saying you want your TV back.
    I guess they don't realize people with only DirecTV or ATT UVerse can't see the crawls.
    compuguy and ncted like this.
  15. NorthAlabama

    NorthAlabama tabasco rules

    Apr 19, 2012
    sweet home, al
    oh, they realize it - they want to be sure and get the message out to everyone else, too. :)
  16. JoeKustra

    JoeKustra in the other Alabama TCF Club

    Dec 7, 2012
    Ashland, PA...
    My CBS and NBC are Nexstar. That crawl sucks. I also get WWOR blacked out for some programs since my local complained.
  17. wizwor

    wizwor Active Member

    Dec 17, 2013
    This is how things started. It would be a win for consumers and premium providers if this was available as part of a 'skinny package'. Might do a lot of harm to the broadcasters, though, and be a bad thing in the end.

    I think the Supreme Court has already determined that it supports the premium providers regardless of merit or precedent.

    It would kill off the broadcast networks then Netflix/Prime/Hulu/etc are no worse than the premium providers. Amazon is on to something with their Recast+OTT -- wish Channel Master had pulled it off, but Amazon would have eventually crushed them anyway.

    Unless you are collateral damage...

    I did not know this. Thanks.

    I hate any kind of crawl during Prime Time. F*ks up my recordings. I have repeatedly emailed them that the people they want to get their message cannot read the crawl. Whatever their motive, it's bad business!
  18. NashGuy

    NashGuy Well-Known Member

    May 2, 2015
    When you say "premium providers," I assume you mean MVPDs (i.e. "cable TV" services)? I *think* DISH actually does make locals optional so that customers can drop them from their cable packages and save $12/mo. They don't really advertise that but I think it's an option. (Don't know how DISH was able to make that happen when no other MVPD has; maybe because Charlie's such a hard-@ss negotiator.)

    And then, of course, on DISH's Sling, they only include the locals in those largest markets where the stations are owned/operated by the networks themselves, ABC in the Orange package, NBC & Fox in the Blue package (but not CBS or The CW at all).

    Beyond those options from DISH, though, keep an eye on the upcoming AT&T TV. My hunch is that it will take the existing Plus and Max packages from DirecTV Now to sell as their most popular packages (but with a few additional popular channels added into both packages). Both include locals; only Max includes RSNs plus additional second-string sports channels (e.g. FS2, Golf, SEC Network). From a branding perspective, the thing I notice is that Plus and Max sound like positions #2 and 3 in a classic 3-part line-up. Like "Good, Better, and Best" or "Some, More, and Most". So where is the entry-level position #1?

    This suggests to me that we'll see a low-cost "Starter" or "Select" package positioned underneath the Plus package on AT&T TV. Where would it come from? I think they'll simply take the one they've already built for AT&T Watch TV. That little service is virtually unknown by the public. Cord-cutters who know about it think of it as an also-ran competing against Philo. It's a service that AT&T intentionally gimped by giving it no cloud DVR. I doubt that they negotiated with cable networks to build that package just for Watch TV. I think it's ultimately intended to be my hypothesized Select package on AT&T TV. As you may know, this package contains no expensive local or sports channels. And the way AT&T did that was by avoiding putting *any* channels owned by Disney/ABC, CBS, Comcast/NBC or Fox in it.

    I think, like Plus and Max, Select will automatically come with HBO (and, come spring 2020, the broader HBO Max) included. Prices will be $30, $50 and $70 per month (which follows the same $20 step-up pattern that AT&T Fiber uses for their broadband speed tiers). Of course, AT&T knows that Select subscribers will want access to their local channels too, integrated in with the streaming channels that they deliver. Which is why I think they'll come out with their own version of Sling's AirTV network OTA tuner with local DVR features. $30/mo total to get HBO Max (10,000+ hours of on-demand ad-free content), plus your live locals, plus a variety of popular entertainment channels like AMC, HGTV, History, Nickelodeon, TBS, TNT, BBC America, Discovery, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, Hallmark, A&E, Lifetime, and Food, plus news from CNN and BBC World News. If that had 20 hours of cloud DVR included for the streaming channels, and however much you could record on OTA locals using your own USB hard drive, that would be a pretty darn good deal for $30/mo, IMO.

    Nah. The key difference with Aereo was that it was for-profit. The law specifically allows non-profits to retransmit free OTA TV signals. Now, that said, Locast still might get slapped down, or at least somehow constrained in how they operate. But I think Locast is on much firmer legal ground than Aereo ever was.

    Well, I don't think it would kill off the broadcast networks but it would sure change their economics. Keep in mind that, prior to 1990, all the broadcast nets operated purely off advertising dollars. They didn't get any retransmission fees (i.e. subscriber dollars). Free streaming apps like Pluto TV, Tubi TV, etc. are proving that there's money to be made by offering content for free with advertising (especially when the ads are unskippable). So, likewise, if the broadcast nets were ever forced back to a situation where they existed on ad dollars alone, it would just mean changes in their programming and spending. And it would almost certainly mean that the networks and all their local affiliates would just begin live-streaming their broadcasts for free 24/7 in order to make it as easy as possible for the largest number of viewers to watch their content (and, of course, ads).
    compuguy likes this.
  19. dlfl

    dlfl Cranky old novice

    Jul 6, 2006
    Dayton OH
    Our Spectrum Fox Sports Ohio channel (which carries all the Cincy Reds games, for example) is having a dispute with DirectTV, with crawlers displaying.

    EDIT: Correction. The dispute is with Dish and Sling.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
  20. ManeJon

    ManeJon Member

    Apr 14, 2018
    "local" stations like automotive dealers are covered by and subject to franchise laws that give them rights and prevent competition. Local stations are "paid" by cable companies and show local commercials also. Even though many locals are now owned by large corporations - the franchise ownership is what gives them "value"
    In the end it costs us the money and one of the reasons that costs keep going up

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