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Guest Message by DevFuse

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PI channel requirement for VOOM?


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8 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   dlsnyder

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Posted 22 October 2003 - 03:12 PM

Does anyone know if VOOM is required to dedicate a certain portion of its bandwidth to PI channels as the other DBS providers are? I see from their channel lineup that they are carrying C-SPAN and C-SPAN II which is a start. How many more are they required to carry? Will we be seeing something like RFD-TV in HD?

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#2 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 22 October 2003 - 03:21 PM

VOOM is not exempt from the PI rules.

It will be interesting how they interpret the rules. They are SUPPOSED to give 4% of their channel capacity - and they are supposed to give the same bandwidth to PI channels as they give to the other channels on their system.

Other DBS providers do not have HD PI channels (they should, IMHO, assuming that there is one available).

Also there is a one-channel-per-programmer rule (unless there no other programmers offering channels). CSPAN counts as one, CSPAN2 wouldn't count as a second channel.

JL

#3 OFFLINE   RAD

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Posted 22 October 2003 - 03:40 PM

I wonder when Rev. Al will start to picket them?

#4 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 22 October 2003 - 04:13 PM

Probably soon. It is up to the PI's to ask to be on the system. They'll get a few applications and have to decide which ones they want on their system.

A quick look at their channel lineup shows mostly SD channels. They will only need three PIs at this point (counting HDs and SDs equally).

JL

#5 OFFLINE   Steve Mehs

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Posted 22 October 2003 - 06:53 PM

It will be a very long time if ever any PI channels are in HD. Most PI channels are run on shoestring budgets and should be just thankful they are being carried on the providers that carry them. Dish lost 3 or 4 PI channels so far due to cost of operations. Being honest, I don't like PI channels and I don't think there should be HD PI channels sucking up critical bandwidth that could be used in better ways.
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#6 OFFLINE   Richard King

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Posted 22 October 2003 - 07:02 PM

I wonder when Rev. Al will start to picket them?

He's probably going to wait until the VOOM chairman gets a dog. :D
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#7 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 22 October 2003 - 07:55 PM

OTA TV allows for anybody with a budget to get their signal on the air. Most likely on a lower power station, but that's life. Cable added a requirement for a local access channel and must carry of educational channels and anyone else with a full power license. C Band satellite leaves it up to the viewer. Pay channels are scrambled and PI channels are usually not. You can get a huge selection of viewpoints for free.

DBS simply replaces the C band dish. PI stations still have to pay their way by buying the satellite time and paying for their link to the headend. But at least they don't have to bribe DBS carriers to share their signals. (And to think that most network signals DBS rebroadcasts are paid for by the DBS provider, not paid to be placed by the content provider.)

I don't want an "HD Garbage" channel --- but I do think that there is more to HD than paid channels.

JL

#8 OFFLINE   dlsnyder

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Posted 23 October 2003 - 09:09 AM

VOOM is not exempt from the PI rules.

It will be interesting how they interpret the rules. They are SUPPOSED to give 4% of their channel capacity - and they are supposed to give the same bandwidth to PI channels as they give to the other channels on their system.

Other DBS providers do not have HD PI channels (they should, IMHO, assuming that there is one available).

Also there is a one-channel-per-programmer rule (unless there no other programmers offering channels). CSPAN counts as one, CSPAN2 wouldn't count as a second channel.

JL


Is it 4% of their channel capacity or 4% of their total available bandwidth per satellite? If 4% of capacity then you would think E* and D* would have been required to add PI channels every time they increased compression. It would also be a good deal for VOOM since they can carry fewer total channels due to the higher bandwidth requirements for HD. Maybe in that case CSPAN meets the 4% requirement for them. Just carry it in a low-compression high-resolution 480p. Congress never looked so good! :D

#9 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 23 October 2003 - 11:37 AM

Is it 4% of their channel capacity or 4% of their total available bandwidth per satellite?

It is government doubletalk...
4% of capacity, but "Channel capacity shall be determined annually by calculating, based on measurements taken on a quarterly basis, the average number of channels available for video programming on all satellites licensed to the provider during the previous year." [47 CFR 100.5©]

Since VOOM just started their capacity first three quarters of 2003 is 0. The fourth quarter saw 73(?) video channels added, including HD. 4% of 73 is 2.92 - 3 channels, but the average for the year is 4% of 18.25 - or 0.73 - One channel is required, three if they count all the 4th quarter launch channels as all year.

It would also be a good deal for VOOM since they can carry fewer total channels due to the higher bandwidth requirements for HD. Maybe in that case CSPAN meets the 4% requirement for them.

I believe it does, this year.

JL




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