DIRECTV HD Channel Anticipation (Official Q1-18 Thread)

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Programming' started by James Long, Jan 1, 2018.

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  1. Jan 9, 2018 #61 of 251
    slice1900

    slice1900 Well-Known Member

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    I'm sure how much cable companies pay for out of market locals depends heavily on how much those out of market locals pay the networks for broadcast rights to out of market customers.

    If the networks are only charging them based on viewership in the DMA, then local stations might charge little or nothing since those additional viewers would be free revenue (i.e. what they collect from local advertisers) That must be the case for WB4CS's cable company, because there's no way they'd carry three markets' worth of locals if they had to pay anything remotely like three market's worth of fees.

    Those fees are huge - where I live Mediacom breaks out the charges for local channels, which is over $9/month now! Big companies like Directv and Comcast may be able to negotiate better deals with large station owner groups like Sinclair and Gray than Mediacom can, so maybe they don't pay quite that much, but it would still be way too much to carry three DMAs at those sorts of prices.
     
  2. Jan 9, 2018 #62 of 251
    oriolesmagic

    oriolesmagic Member

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    I know that out-of-market SV channels do charge for carriage. They don't get the same rate as a primary market affiliate, due to the fact that in many places, the network broadcasts or syndicated programming that is shared, will be blacked out. But they definitely charge, and that's why you're seeing more and more of these being dropped by cable companies as the deals expire. But like all of these retrans deals, when they expire, the broadcaster wants more than they previously got. While they could look at that revenue as extra in a way (not being guaranteed carriage in the first place), they're happy to soak cable companies the same way they do for primary market stations.

    I do think Nexstar (who owns a neighboring DMA CBS affiliate) has largely stopped offering their signal out-of-market, at least according to Comcast. All their markets that previously had it lost it out-of-market. Whether that's a convenient excuse from Comcast to avoid a largely popular channel due to local news, as well as better coverage of Steelers games for some areas or legitimate is a real question.

    The areas getting multiple affiliates is dwindling thanks to this, as well as smaller markets launching missing networks on subchannels (see ABC in most of West Virginia outside of Charleston, all channels but ABC in Harrisonburg, VA, NBC in the Salisbury, MD market). A lot of places used to carry as many as 4 of the same stations. I know Comcast in Harrisonburg used to carry 4 NBC stations, being WRC out of DC, WWBT out of Richmond, WVIR out of Charlottesville and WSLS out of Roanoke. The cable system I grew up with carried 3 CBS stations (WUSA out of DC, WJZ out of Baltimore and WTAJ out of Altoona) for years until Nexstar pulled the signal at the end of 2016.

    I know a cable system in Garrett County, MD (Pittsburgh DMA) used to carry 4 NBC stations: WPXI (Pittsburgh, in market), WHAG out of Hagerstown (no longer NBC), WJAC out of Johnstown, PA and WBOY out of Clarksburg, WV.
     
  3. Jan 10, 2018 #63 of 251
    oriolesmagic

    oriolesmagic Member

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    To answer your question, from my files, the Comcast systems in Ansonia and Middlebury carry WABC HD. Ansonia carries WCBS, WNBC, WWOR and WPIX as well, but SD only. The Middlebury system has all those but WCBS. Oddly enough, the Middlebury system does NOT carry WNET, by what I have.
     
  4. Jan 10, 2018 #64 of 251
    Bigg

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    I'm not sure that satellite local channel regulations are the most important topic right now. At the same time, however, I think most people don't notice/care what locals they have, except for small pockets where people are between DMA lines.

    So my question then, is, why does Comcast here carry NYC locals in SD only that virtually no one ever watches? My sense is that they are getting them as freebies for carrying the local Hartford-New Haven locals in HD, since NYC is O&O. Not sure about PBS, as those are actually slightly different, and have local programming, unlike the big four, which is local news, syndicated daytime, and completely duplicated at night.
     
  5. Jan 10, 2018 #65 of 251
    Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    Ok, you're referring to Comcast Seymour and Comcast Waterbury. What is bizarre is that here on Comcast Branford, way on the east side of New Haven county, we get WNET in HD, and WCBS, WNBC, and WABC in SD, but we appear to have lost WNYW in there somewhere. DirecTV carries WCBS, WNYW, and WNBC, although they show up on DirecTV's website as SD, not HD, which is clearly a carriage limitation if it's correct, as the HD feeds would be physically possible to receive anywhere in the CONUS, and we'd be in the NYC spotbeam anyway. The DirecTV systems that I come in contact with are not in the same zip code, so I don't know what we'd actually get.
     
  6. Jan 10, 2018 #66 of 251
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Everyone should be in one DMA. It may not be the DMA local people expect to be in, but every county/parish is assigned to be somewhere.

    Without doing a deep dive it is hard to say. If the channels are on the "Significantly Viewed" list they have proven you wrong and shown people in that community are watching (or at least were when the stations were put on the list). But to say that Comcast gets NYC locals because they are paying for Hartford-New Haven is like saying you get a free car from the Mazda dealer because you bought one from the Chevy dealer in another county. The local station cannot and would not give competitive stations for free. (Which leads me to believe that the stations are on the "Significantly Viewed" list or are otherwise legal to carry regardless of local affiliates.)

    Satellite companies contract for the O&Os as part of their national cable channel packages. For example, all the ABC O&Os are negotiated with carriage of other ABC/Disney channels and all the NBC O&Os are negotiated with the other NBC Universal channels. So Comcast could be paying for carriage through a larger contract or be required to carry the channels through a larger contract. There are a lot of variables in carriage contracts.

    Without digging deeper (and further off topic for this thread) it is impossible to give a definitive answer. I assume you would like these channels to be carried by DIRECTV in HD as locals in your community? Some carriage that fits within the carriage laws. If carriage is not allowed via the law then DIRECTV's hands are tied (and we can discuss changing the laws in a more appropriate forum).
     
  7. Jan 10, 2018 #67 of 251
    Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    But they should be able to get locals that are relevant to their area, not just from their own DMA.

    Sort of. I see your point for markets where the channels aren't O&O, but I do wonder if the big market channels are freebies since they are O&O. The point about cable network carriage is interesting too, if the big networks are shoving them down Comcast's throat. IIRC, they don't pay for PBS, so duplicate stations just cost them the bandwidth.

    I'd like all the providers to be on a level playing field so that there is more/better competition in general. I just can't figure out exactly what the laws are, and why they seem to end up applying differently to different providers. It would be nice if everyone could get NYC and LA channels too, but that's another issue entirely.

    This does beg the question though: what stops Comcast or DirecTV or anyone else from dropping a local market's channel and just carrying the SV channel if that one is cheaper?
     
  8. Jan 10, 2018 #68 of 251
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    DIRECTV has to deal with the issue of SV channels that are not SV in an entire DMA. Sure, they could refuse to pay the ransom for a network affiliate in that DMA and not carry them (annoying viewers and giving them a reason to look at another provider). But in nearly all cases they could not cover the entire market with an alternate. So not cutting a deal for the in DMA affiliate would leave many if not most people in that market without that affiliate's network.

    Comcast and other cable systems could get more granular but I doubt that a station would make a deal to be carried only in the parts of their DMA where there is no competition. Some one town cable system might get away with that ... but the big guys have to worry about ALL of the markets they serve.

    The laws favor the in market stations.
     
  9. Jan 11, 2018 #69 of 251
    Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    Gotcha. Yeah, I wasn't thinking about that, as the overlap from neighboring DMAs is different in various parts of my DMA, as on cable we have overlaps from Springfield, New York, Providence-New Bedford, and Boston.

    True. The laws are very biased. They should have just said "whatever is OTA is a free-for-all", or made a regulated, compulsory licensing fee set by the state DPUC that the station is located in, and then it would be take-it-or-leave-it for the cable companies.
     
  10. Jan 11, 2018 #70 of 251
    studechip

    studechip Godfather

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    That's right. Depending upon where you are in CT, you get sv from NYC, Providence, or Boston.
     
  11. Jan 11, 2018 #71 of 251
    James Long

    James Long Ready for Uplink! Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    Statutory licensing (similar to the distants/superstations) and must carry to any customer in the FCC defined OTA coverage would be the way I'd write the laws. But the big station owners like it the way that it is ... "consent to carry" where the station can withhold carriage for a fee and protections against competition via satellite. The satellite carriers would rather authorize channels based on market than counties/zip codes within a market - and based on what we have seen with zip code based sports blackouts they would have a challenge to get zip code based coverage right. The end users get to live with what we get.

    Seeing a fix is not something I expect.
     
  12. Jan 11, 2018 #72 of 251
    CTJon

    CTJon Godfather

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    I suspect that, although not alone, CT is a particularly messed up TV state(lived there for over 40 years) being a small state that is between so many big markets with their own stations. In Hartford back in the old days of antenna TV you got CT and Springfield, MA stations.
     
  13. Jan 12, 2018 #73 of 251
    Bigg

    Bigg Godfather

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    I wouldn't expect a fix either, but the current system is a failure of the free market. If you want to let the market work, then the local stations have to compete with each other, so Comcast could just decide to use Boston or NYC locals if the Hartford-New Haven ones are charging too much, wherever they want, whenever they want.

    The other model is a monopoly, which has to be regulated to function properly, and thus there would be a PUC-regulated rate, which would be take-it-or-leave-it to the cable companies, and if they thought it was too much, it would go to a public hearing before the PUC, and all companies would get the same regulated rate if they wanted to carry CBS or NBC, for example, in a given market.

    The current mess we have is simply one more factor that is adding gasoline to fire in the whole cord-cutting movement, and is going to end up being the downfall of the pay TV industry as we know it today.

    Sports blackouts as a whole are completely insane and need to go away. They are also not going to go away, and will also contribute to cord cutting, although at the end of the day, pay tv is simply too expensive. These VMVPDs are a step in the right direction, although they often aren't bundled with the channels that people want, so they may just skip it entirely and go OTA and streaming, which many have.

    It's not the messed up per se, we just have a whole bunch of different markets that are close to each other. Much of CT used to be able to get NY stations in the analog days, now a much smaller part can via OTA. The only real big issue in CT is people in upper Fairfield County who associate much more with Hartford than New York get New York locals. The flip side is that on cable, where they don't re-compress locals, the NYC locals have fewer subchannels, and thus better quality. Many of them are 16-17mbps on the main HD feed.
     
  14. Jan 16, 2018 #74 of 251
    theloudhouse5

    theloudhouse5 Member

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    WCTE in nashville market no longer avialbe
     
  15. Jan 16, 2018 #75 of 251
    AngryManMLS

    AngryManMLS Active Member

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    Spike TV becomes The Paramount Network on 1/18.
     
  16. Jan 17, 2018 #76 of 251
    YUMA11

    YUMA11 AllStar

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    Any good news about new HD channels?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  17. Jan 17, 2018 #77 of 251
    theloudhouse5

    theloudhouse5 Member

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    Nick toons might be one of the next
     
  18. Jan 17, 2018 #78 of 251
    leprechaun106317

    leprechaun106317 AllStar

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    Wow I had no idea about the latest batch of new HD additions from a couple weeks ago until last night lol With those additions, the only channel I want left is Logo.
     
  19. Jan 19, 2018 #79 of 251
    mws192

    mws192 Godfather

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    -Latest U-verse filing-

    U-verse Programming Changes

    As previously noticed, AT&T's contract with the programmer for the following channels is set to expire. While these channels will continue to be available to U-verse members so long as AT&T has the rights to carry them, if a reasonable agreement cannot be reached with the programmer the programming will no longer be available

    January 2018: Sony Entertainment Television Asia (channel 3704), GOL TV (channel 656 and 1656 in HD).

    February 2018: Ovation (channel 385 and 1385 in HD), and Stingray Karaoke (channel 96 and 1096 in HD), Stingray Music (channel 500, 531 and 1500, 1531 in HD).

    March 2018: Havoc TV HD (channel 1490), World Fishing Network HD (channel 1679), MegaTV (channel 3008 in HD), SNY HD (channel 1704), U-verse Shopping Multiview application (channel 412 and 1412 in HD), and U-verse Paquete Espanol application (channel 3001).
     
  20. Jan 19, 2018 #80 of 251
    sangs

    sangs AllStar

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    SNY ever disappears from DirecTV and I'll be back to using FiOS as my primary within seconds of the announcement.
     
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