Merry Christmas to my friends here!

Willscary's picture
New London

I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous new year!


Posted December 24, 2009 12:44pm in
SeanM402's picture

Right back at you!

Right back at you!

Mason's picture

Thank You Will, Hope you have

Thank You Will,
Hope you have a better New Year along with all the rest of us. We could use it! I have a couple questions for you I'm hoping you might be able to help me with.

1. Do you think FREE OTA TV might be a dinosaur of the past in a couple of years? If you do a google or perhaps you have seen on the news there are many articles on this happening and the local stations switching their broadcast to cable/dish only because of revenue loss. After spending all this money on the digital conversion I would think that would be a last resort? That would suck bigtime and wouldn't be right!

2. Is it possible for local OTA stations to scramble their stations so you would need a descrambler and pay a fee?

If I had a choice of these two, I would take number 2 and hope they would get together with the rest of the local stations and offer us a package deal for much less than cable/dish. They could add some more sub-channels like Fox New/sports and others of their choices to make it like a small cable package. Then I wouldn't mind donating $10-$15 to them. I don't like the idea of cable giving me a few channels I would like and a hundred that are junk for 30-40 per month. That's why I stick to my guns on OTA only. I'm probably worrying too much and getting way ahead like I usually do, but can see this possibly happening.

Willscary's picture

Mason, Happy New Year to you


Happy New Year to you also!

Actually, if you read yesterday's Post Crescent article titled "Broadcaster's Woes Could Spell Trouble for Future of Free TV", I put forth a short reply to the column.

Over the last few months, telecom lobbyists have been pressuring the FCC to reduce the commercial TV band even further and auction off even more of the airwaves. The FCC has been debating this issue, but if it even comes close to being voted on, we as Americans need to be heard! In the last 2 years, we have subsidized the digital transition with tax dollars with the converter box coupon program. We as a nation have spent billions more on updating our antenna systems. We have bought the newest TVs in order to own a TV with a built-in digital tuner (instead of a converter box). Now, there are talks happening in Washington to further reduce the TV spectrum, even though it has just been reduced and was also reduced in 1982. A lot of these bands are not yet filled, but telecoms want the TV spectrum in hopes that 1.) the prime TV spectrum will be a better carrier for their product than their current spectrum and 2.) that this change in spectrum will lead more households to switch to pay TV in lieu of again changing their equipment.

The FCC needs local OTA to serve the public in time of disaster. The public needs OTA for local news and local programming, including local advertisements. Because of these reasons, I do not think that the FCC will change the current system least not for the next few dacades. I also believe that you will not need to worry about scrambled stations OTA. While it would give the locals added revenue, I would think it would also mean 1.) less advertising revenue because many will not pay for scrambled OTA and its associated equipment, causing advertising revenue to decline, and 2.) I would also think that a scrambled OTA station would need a new, very restrictive license to broadcast in that manner because they are no longer serving the public for free.

Also, remember that the highest ranked TV shows are not cable shows. If I recall correctly, all of the top 10 rated shows are network TV shows. This is still strong leverage in this fight. If Congress would look at college sports and tell universities that they are public entities and can not use sports as a money-making venture, then perhaps ESPN would fade and national OTA affiliates could again broadcast most of these games. After all, I am a huge opponent to ESPN since they began making teams play at 2AM on Wednesday nights. These student athletes are supposed to be getting an education. How do they do this when they board a plane on Tuesday and return late Thursday? This is rediculous. The cable networks have become too powerful.

Just my opinion.


Mason's picture

Thank You Bill, Thanks for

Thank You Bill,
Thanks for taking your time and writing me such a great article on the subject. I completely agree on everything. That would really be a kick in the teeth to all of us who spent so much money and effort trying to pull in the harder OTA digital stations. Like you said, they still need OTA TV for emergency broadcast to people without cable. I don't think they will pull the plug completely anytime soon. But what would stop them from turning their OTA channels into mostly news, educational, and advertising channels? All the good shows and programming (Packer Games, Bowl Games, Races, etc, would no longer be on the OTA Channel but would be on their cable channel. That would really suck bigtime! Just think the highlights of our day would be watching Pete & Rachel in the morning and living with Amy, lol. I shouldn't be writing my thoughts on here, I might be giving them ideas! As far as the scrambling thing, you and I both know anything that's scrambled can be descrambled. If they ever pulled the plug or done something crappy like removed the programming trying to force OTA viewers to go pay, I can guarantee I would go out of my way to get a blackmarket receiver and dish even if it cost me $2,000. Knowing the money wasn't going in Dish or Warners greedy hands and knowing I had access to every channel available would be total satisfaction for me. That is not a threat, that is a promise. I already know where I can get such systems but will not do so as long as I can still receive free OTA TV. So those greedy cable/dish companies better think twice before they screw with us or they will be giving us all their prime channels for free! They better leave well-enough alone! I'm getting myself in a p'od fighting mood. I might have to go outside and shoot off the rifle. Hey, it's New Years so I have an excuse for that.
All the best to you Bill

Willscary's picture

Thanks Mason. Here is a link

Thanks Mason.

Here is a link to the PC article in case you missed it or couldn't find it.



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