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Canadian Question


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20 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   siciliansatman

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:48 PM

My work will have me working up in Canada (Morris, Manitoba) a small town about 30 miles from the North Dakota border in March 2013 for 3 months. I am dreading being away from home (Grand Forks, ND) without my DIRECTV. If I take my dish and receiver and set it up temporally will it work even though I am technically in Canada (just barely 30 miles past the border) or not? Or do I have to temporarily stop my service and be bored without my DIRECTV?

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#2 OFFLINE   west99999

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:55 PM

That would be against Terms of Service. Also illegal.

#3 OFFLINE   tomspeer46

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:51 PM

My work will have me working up in Canada (Morris, Manitoba) a small town about 30 miles from the North Dakota border in March 2013 for 3 months. I am dreading being away from home (Grand Forks, ND) without my DIRECTV. If I take my dish and receiver and set it up temporally will it work even though I am technically in Canada (just barely 30 miles past the border) or not? Or do I have to temporarily stop my service and be bored without my DIRECTV?

From a technical standpoint, (not legal):
If you are quiet about it, and know how to align a dish, it should work that close to the border. You may be outside the spot beam for your local channels, but probably not. Pembina,ND on the US side of the border, gets Fargo locals. I don't know how the customs folks at the border feel about it, however.

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#4 OFFLINE   KyL416

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 09:54 PM

It might work, it will be a challenge getting the proper alignment, and you probably won't get your locals because you're out of range of the spotbeams.

You should give Canadian TV a chance though, most of the US networks have a Canadian equivelent that gets most of the shows on a same day basis, and in some cases they get them before they air in the USA. Also sports packages aren't exclusive there so you can get things like NFL Sunday Ticket on cable.

#5 OFFLINE   trh

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 10:20 PM

"Just barely 30 past the border" makes it illegal.

You might want to try Sling-box or similar device.

#6 OFFLINE   pdcolemanjr

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 01:58 AM

So since its illegal for him to have the service and directv cannot legally offer him their service, they would then have to let him out of his contact? No? I am curious about this, if they would still charge an early termination fee so someone who still wanted service, but the "law" would not allow for that service to continue...

Anyone with experience?

As an aside, as an American who is engaged to a Canadian citizen, I am terribly jealous over Canadian programming.. I would give anything to receive a full Bell package over anything Directv or Dish offers... A combo of Boston locals (my old home town) coupled with a great mix of Canadian, British and American TV ... Plus a far cheaper Sunday Ticket package make Bell an amazing choice.. So I would second the recommendation of giving a Canadian service a try.

But I am curious about my question above,,

#7 OFFLINE   iceman2a

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 08:36 AM

So since its illegal for him to have the service and directv cannot legally offer him their service, they would then have to let him out of his contact? No? I am curious about this, if they would still charge an early termination fee so someone who still wanted service, but the "law" would not allow for that service to continue...

Anyone with experience?

As an aside, as an American who is engaged to a Canadian citizen, I am terribly jealous over Canadian programming.. I would give anything to receive a full Bell package over anything Directv or Dish offers... A combo of Boston locals (my old home town) coupled with a great mix of Canadian, British and American TV ... Plus a far cheaper Sunday Ticket package make Bell an amazing choice.. So I would second the recommendation of giving a Canadian service a try.

But I am curious about my question above,,


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#8 OFFLINE   carl6

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 08:41 AM

So since its illegal for him to have the service and directv cannot legally offer him their service, they would then have to let him out of his contact? No? I am curious about this, if they would still charge an early termination fee so someone who still wanted service, but the "law" would not allow for that service to continue...


In this case, because his move up there is temporary (3 months), suspending service for that time would be my preference, then start it back up when I return.

#9 OFFLINE   peano

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 03:14 PM

What about US residents that travel to Canada in an RV? Watching DIRECTV in that case is not illegal. It is only illegal for a Canadian resident to watch DIRECTV.

#10 OFFLINE   tomspeer46

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 04:41 PM

It may be against the regulations. (I think "illegal" is a bit strong). Someone who cared would have to complain. DirecTV cares only in that they have to appear to be following the rules. I don't think there are any DirecTV cops patrolling the Canadian country side, looking for violators. The cable and satellite companies in Canada probably care, they are trying to protect their customer base and franchise. But the average installer isn't going to be spending time looking for dishes from south of the border. He gets paid for installations completed. The Canadian police agencies probably have more important things to do.

So you might want to spray paint out the DirecTV logo on the dish (I think it looks better without it anyway, so I did it a long time ago.) And don't call customer service with complaints about your reception. There are many Americans who have vacation homes in Canada, and bring their DirecTV receivers with them.
Aligning a DiecTV dish, especially one that can get your local stations from the 119 satellite is complex, and it is even more complex if you have HD. A SWM LNB adds to the complexity. You will need a good compass, a good signal meter, and in the case of a SWM system, an ASL-1 splitter.

And no, I am not one of those who takes my DirecTV to Canada.

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#11 OFFLINE   texasbrit

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 04:52 PM

It may be against the regulations. (I think "illegal" is a bit strong). Someone who cared would have to complain. DirecTV cares only in that they have to appear to be following the rules. I don't think there are any DirecTV cops patrolling the Canadian country side, looking for violators. The cable and satellite companies in Canada probably care, they are trying to protect their customer base and franchise. But the average installer isn't going to be spending time looking for dishes from south of the border. He gets paid for installations completed. The Canadian police agencies probably have more important things to do.

So you might want to spray paint out the DirecTV logo on the dish (I think it looks better without it anyway, so I did it a long time ago.) And don't call customer service with complaints about your reception. There are many Americans who have vacation homes in Canada, and bring their DirecTV receivers with them.
Aligning a DiecTV dish, especially one that can get your local stations from the 119 satellite is complex, and it is even more complex if you have HD. A SWM LNB adds to the complexity. You will need a good compass, a good signal meter, and in the case of a SWM system, an ASL-1 splitter.


No it is actually illegal.....none the less there are many people in Canada who have DirecTV and I have yet to hear of the mounties raiding anyone at 2am to confiscate their dish. And to the other poster, it does not matter if you are a Canadian citizen or not. Technically, if you drive an RV into Canada and access DirecTV you are breaking the law. Again, I have yet to hear of anyone being arrested for doing this.

Interestingly, receiving Canadian satellite TV in the USA is NOT illegal under US law. The number of people receiving Bell in the USA has dramatically decreased in recent years, partly because Bell will discontinue the service if there are any signs the system is in the USA, and partly (mainly) because Bell's new satellites do not cover much of the USA. Shaw Direct, the other Canadian satellite company, is more "snowbird friendly" and the satellite coverage reaches down into Mexico.

#12 OFFLINE   trh

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:34 PM

I would give anything to receive a full Bell package over anything Directv or Dish offers.

If it is that important to you, why haven't you moved there? :D.

Seriously, since your fiancé is Canadian, does she still have family there? If so, install a Sling type device there so you can watch here in the US.

#13 OFFLINE   nmetro

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:54 PM

From a technical aspect, equipment, dish, receiver, et. al.; it work. aiming the dish, getting permission to install it, etc. may or may not be an issue.

As for the spirit of the law, Canada has their own satellite providers, as does the US. To the Canadian Television and Radio Commission (their FCC), this would be illegal. Just like someone installing ExpressVu or Rogers in the US would not be welcome by the FCC.

You could check with ExpressVu or Rogers and ask if they will install you on a short term contract. Canadian satellite carries the main US broadcast networks. They also carry a number of US cable networks. Things get dicey, though, with channels like ESPN, as they carry the Canadian equivalent, but it does carry some US college games. Not sure about NFL or NBA. By the way, the main Canadian networks pretty much carry most of US network programming in some form. One of the reason why DirecTV is not allowed to carry Global, CBC and CTV in the US.

#14 OFFLINE   pdcolemanjr

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 07:40 PM

I actually seriously considered that. But a downside of Alaska is non unlimited Internet .. So at only 200 gbs a month, I would kill it watching Canadian programming, but it is a fantastic idea

#15 OFFLINE   PrinceLH

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:37 PM

All I can add to this is this: Don't be paranoid about it. I have a Directv account and a Shaw account. Sure, it makes me so called in the wrong, but hell, it's only television. I'm sure the Canadians would not say anything to you, if you bring your satellite equipment to Canada. Hell, a good portion of Canadians already have Dish and Directv, in what is called grey market. The only people who get pinched are dealers and they actually look the other way about 99.99999975% of the time, so don't sweat it!

#16 OFFLINE   texasbrit

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 10:57 PM

As for the spirit of the law, Canada has their own satellite providers, as does the US. To the Canadian Television and Radio Commission (their FCC), this would be illegal. Just like someone installing ExpressVu or Rogers in the US would not be welcome by the FCC.


Not the same thing. In Canada, there is actually a federal law making it illegal to use Dish or DirecTV. In the US, although the FCC might not approve, there is no federal law preventing you from watching Canadian satellite.

Here's an interesting discussion about HBO.....

#17 OFFLINE   JoeTheDragon

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 11:07 PM

So since its illegal for him to have the service and directv cannot legally offer him their service, they would then have to let him out of his contact? No? I am curious about this, if they would still charge an early termination fee so someone who still wanted service, but the "law" would not allow for that service to continue...

Anyone with experience?

As an aside, as an American who is engaged to a Canadian citizen, I am terribly jealous over Canadian programming.. I would give anything to receive a full Bell package over anything Directv or Dish offers... A combo of Boston locals (my old home town) coupled with a great mix of Canadian, British and American TV ... Plus a far cheaper Sunday Ticket package make Bell an amazing choice.. So I would second the recommendation of giving a Canadian service a try.

But I am curious about my question above,,


they also get the local WGN that has more sports on it.
I want CLTV / CLTV HD on direct tv.

#18 OFFLINE   KyL416

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 11:37 PM

That's because the CRTC only approves a certain list of foreign stations to be imported to protect their own networks, and there's no syndex rule that resulted in the launch of the cable only feeds in the US. WGN-TV is on the list, WGN America isn't. The same thing with TBS, only WTBS was on the list so when they split Canada got WPCH/Peachtree TV while many of TBS's new original shows like Conan went to other networks like The Comedy Network and TBS's MLB coverage went to Rogers SportsNet.

However there is another rule to protect the Canadian broadcasts networks from the big 4 US networks, any duplicated program is replaced with a simulcast if the Canadian network requests it. i.e. if you turn on one of the imported ABC affiliates on Thursday nights you'll see CTV's broadcast of Grey's Anatomy. They also replace the Super Bowl with CTV's broadcast so they don't get the commercials.

#19 OFFLINE   habsfan66

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 09:09 AM

All I can add to this is this: Don't be paranoid about it. I have a Directv account and a Shaw account. Sure, it makes me so called in the wrong, but hell, it's only television. I'm sure the Canadians would not say anything to you, if you bring your satellite equipment to Canada. Hell, a good portion of Canadians already have Dish and Directv, in what is called grey market. The only people who get pinched are dealers and they actually look the other way about 99.99999975% of the time, so don't sweat it!


Do you still need to go through the charade of having a Canadian address on the Shaw's account or can you use your home address?

#20 OFFLINE   iceman2a

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 10:22 AM

No it is actually illegal.....none the less there are many people in Canada who have DirecTV and I have yet to hear of the mounties raiding anyone at 2am to confiscate their dish. And to the other poster, it does not matter if you are a Canadian citizen or not. Technically, if you drive an RV into Canada and access DirecTV you are breaking the law. Again, I have yet to hear of anyone being arrested for doing this.

Interestingly, receiving Canadian satellite TV in the USA is NOT illegal under US law. The number of people receiving Bell in the USA has dramatically decreased in recent years, partly because Bell will discontinue the service if there are any signs the system is in the USA, and partly (mainly) because Bell's new satellites do not cover much of the USA. Shaw Direct, the other Canadian satellite company, is more "snowbird friendly" and the satellite coverage reaches down into Mexico.


Not lately anyway ;)
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