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mkpolley said:
Any one else having closed caption troubles on vip 411/211,only works on a few channels.
Yes! I just got the upgrade from the 811 system to the 211 Bronze package with HD Locals and the VOOM stuff.

I have been using Closed Captions all the time to catch bits of speech which is hard to hear etc.. After the upgrade, I noticed several things, documented them and called to voice a strong complaint.

First of all the FCC mandated that all programming have CC on them as of January 2006. There are some exceptions, but the companies which transmit the signal are responsible for them, not the networks or original movie producers.

1. I was appalled that ALL the VOOM content has no Closed Captions to begin with. It turns out all the VOOM channels are sent over Satelite 129. There is one channel in the new Bronze, UNIHD, which DID have a few (CC) programs showing in the guide, but, again, the Closed Captions did not display.

2. I was surprized to find that ALL the new Local channels in HD are not showing Closed Captions when they show (CC) in the guide. The captions will show up when viewing the Standard Definition channel versions of the SAME program, but not the HD transmission. The HD versions are also ALL being sent over the 129 Satelite!

3. My older HD channels I had before switching from the 811 to the new 211 Bronze system, like HDNET, TNTHD, SHOWHD, HBOHD, ESPHD, etc., which had closed captions STILL have them. These are transmitted over the 110 Satelite as before, in Mpeg2! Howvwer, there was one anomaly to this... the HD Discovery channel. Even though the guide showed (CC) on the program, it did not display Closed Captions. From what I was told, this program was also sent on Sat 110.

So, my consensus (along with the response from the Dish Network tech I discussed this with) is that everything coming down from satelite 129 (supposedly in Mpeg4) show NO Closed Captions when they are supposed to (when they show up in the guide)!

This to me is a disgusting misrepresentation of the Dish Network product. Also, it appears that this is also against the FCC mandate which specifies virtually all programs transmitted should be showing Closed Captions unless they are given an exemption by the FCC. The FCC states that only non-profit or special situations where it would be an undue burden on the the provider to provide closed captions might be given an exemption for it. But... they also specify that Educational or News programs cannot get exemptions. So then WHY does HDNEWS NEVER show (CC) in the programming guide, along with all the educational channels that VOOM provides?

Here's a quote from the NAD National Association for the Deaf website;

"Under the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (PL 104-104), virtually all new broadcast, satellite and cable programming must be captioned by January 1, 2006."

Hello! It's almost 2007 now! And we also pay funding for it from our taxes! Though I'm not sure how that works.

I hope Dish Network will be aggressive in remedies to both, the 129 satellite CC issue as well as getting going on the VOOM programming to include CC in its program transmission. They ARE responsible for it and as far as I can tell, they are breaking the law right now!
 

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I just had a 622 HD receiver installed. I was amazed that I could not get closed captions on 20 out of 25 HD channels offere by dish as well as 2 out of the 4 local HDs. When I called dish, they said they cannot provide captions on mpg4 stations.

I informed them that they are breaking the law, but they claimed that "they do not break the law" I filed a formal complant per the FCC regs:
fcc.gov/cgb/consumerfacts/closedcaption.html

Everyone with this problem should file a complaint with the FCC as described in the link.
 

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ronht said:
I just had a 622 HD receiver installed. I was amazed that I could not get closed captions on 20 out of 25 HD channels offere by dish as well as 2 out of the 4 local HDs. When I called dish, they said they cannot provide captions on mpg4 stations.

I informed them that they are breaking the law, but they claimed that "they do not break the law" I filed a formal complant per the FCC regs:
fcc.gov/cgb/consumerfacts/closedcaption.html

Everyone with this problem should file a complaint with the FCC as described in the link.
Per the FCC website http://www.fcc.gov/mb/facts/ccfactsh.html "Dish Network" is specifically mentioned!!!

Q: Who is required to provide closed captions under the new rules?

A: The rules require people or companies that distribute television programs directly to home viewers ("video program distributors") to make sure that those programs are captioned. Video program distributors include local broadcast television stations, satellite television services (such as DirecTV, Primestar, and the Dish Network), local cable television operators, and other companies that distribute video programming directly to the home. In some situations, video program providers will be responsible for captioning programs. A video program provider could be a television program network (for example, ABC, NBC, UPN, Lifetime, A&E) or other company that makes a particular television program.

I have submitted my complaint!
 

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Okay, I hope no one is offended by this post for it's length if nothing else. I'm not one of those who wants big brother to take care of all my problems, but in this case have exhausted all other venues. I decided to post here, what I sent to the FCC after discussing it with one of their people over the phone... she was very helpful by the way! Perhaps it will help someone else here, who really would like to see their Closed Captioning, submit a form of notification to Dish that we really want them to address it! I see new software upgrades come in with new bells & whistles (like a large font "HD" on all my HD channels... whoopee!)... but still no CC's on certain CC'd HD programs because of MPEG4 and the 211/622 receivers.

Here's my email to them;

Emailed to;
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]

-----------------------------
Complaint about Dish Network not providing Closed Captioning on many HD (High Definition) channels and also not providing Closed Caption Decoding capabilities on their newer Dish 211 & Dish 622 DVR Receivers of pre-existing Captioned HD programs, which are being transmitted in MPEG4 format.


Dish Network / Echostar Closed Captioning Complaint Outline

I began subscribing to Dish Network Satellite programming in February, 2005. This package included a Dish 811 receiver and several High Definition (HD) programs. During the time I used this receiver, ALL Closed Captioned programming (when shown as "CC" in the guide) was viewable and displayed on my television. I since upgraded to a new system package from them in December 2006, which included a newer 211 receiver capable of receiving their latest MPEG4 broadcasts in HD, which consist of approx 10 VOOM Network HD channels, four HD Local channels and a couple of previously existing HD channels, which have since been changed from the previous MPEG2 compression method to the newer MPEG4 method.

1. I immediately noticed that ALL the VOOM network channels did NOT have Closed Captioning .

2. I also noticed that where there were a few programs which showed Closed Captioning "CC" in the channel guide, but the actual Closed Captioning was not present.

3. None of the four Local feeds displayed Closed Captioning, even though they contain it. I can switch to the same Local channel sent in Standard Definition format and see the Closed Captioning in the program... but not in the High Definition format for which I paid more to see.

4. I then did some research and contacted Echostar Communications Technical Department (Echostar is the parent company);
EchoStar Access and
Technical Operations Center
530 Echostar Dr
Cheyenne, WY 82007
tel: 1.877.358.2263
and an engineer there, verified to me, that ALL the channels and programming I was referring to, which stated "CC" in the guide, but did not display Closed Captions, was being fed to the satellites in the newer MPEG4 format. They also verified that they are indeed sending out Closed Captioning "data" in their feeds to the satellites on those MPEG4 HD channels, and I was told that the Dish 211 receiver must need a software upgrade in order to display them.

5. I then made several calls back to Customer Service at Dish Network about upgrading the software on my 211 receiver, but was told there is no upgrade and they repeatedly told me "We cannot provide captions on mpg4 stations. It is a known issue"! They also could not provide me with an estimate time when this issue would be resolved! It has been 60 days. There are perhaps millions of other customers in the same situation as myself who purchased their upgrades many months before myself and are having the same problem. I know of several with whom I have personally discussed this issue.

6. I also asked where to email a formal complaint and they could not give me that information until I contacted the FCC who made a call for me.

Therefore, I am filing this formal complaint to you, the FCC, to please and urgently address this problem. We use Closed Captioning 100% of the time and paid for the service. Nowhere in the Dish Network Agreement I signed during the installation and nowhere on the Dish Network website or advertisements do they have a disclaimer or statement that what I am buying will not contain Closed Captioning and/or will degrade previously viewable Closed Captioning programs to a NON-Closed Caption state.

There are essentially two complaints here;
1. None of the VOOM Network programs contain ANY Closed Caption programming available (no "CC" in the guide").

2. On ALL MPEG4 broadcasts where it shows "CC" (Closed Captioning) contained in the program, NO Closed Captions display on the screen.

Following are all channel details, per your requested complaint outline below;

Filing Closed Captioning Complaints

Your written complaint addressed to the video programming distributor must provide specific information about the closed captioning problem and should include:

* the television channel number and call sign or name (e.g., Channel 22 WZZZ, Channel 106 The Story Channel);


Note: The following channels are all being sent in an MPEG4 transmission format.
http://www.dishnetwork.com/content/our_products/dish_hd/programming/index.shtml

Dish Network VOOM Channels which do NOT contain Closed Captions in the original programming (or on the guide);
http://www.voom.tv/
9474 Animania HD
9471 Equator HD
9472 Gallery HD
9479 Guy TV HD
9482 HD News (I thought ALL news channels were mandated to contain captions)
9480 Majestic HD
9481 Monsters HD
9470 Rave HD
9476 Rush HD
9478 Ultra HD

Dish Network HD Channels which show "CC" (Closed Captioning) in the guide, but do not display them.
9419 Arts & Entertainment
9421 Discover HD
9427 Universal HD

Dish Network Local Channels which show "CC" (Closed Captioning) in the guide, but do not display them. Also, the "Standard Definition" MPEG2 versions of these channels DO display the Captions on these channels, which confirms that Closed Captioning IS contained in the original programming.
http://www.dishnetwork.com/content/our_products/dish_hd/programming/locals/index.shtml

6438 (local 7) KGO
6439 (local 5) KPIX
6440 (local 11) KNTV
6441 (local 2) KTVU

The consensus here, is that Dish Network / Echostar has switched to the newer MPEG4 method of compression/transmission technology, in order to be able to transmit more information along the same feed using the same or less bandwidth, but has delivered faulty, or otherwise non-conforming receivers to their customers, which prevent the Closed Captions from being displayed on their monitors or televisions. This includes the Dish 211 and Dish 622 HD receivers http://www.dishnetwork.com/content/our_products/dish_hd/receivers/index.shtml , but may include others. They required the customers to upgrade from older receivers like the 811, because those older receivers did not support the new MPEG4 format they are transmitting. And, the customers pay more per month for this additional prgramming!

Also, it appears like they are progressively switching channels to the newer MPEG4 format. A cited example is the Arts & Entertainment HD channel 9419 listed above, is a recent upgrade as of 02/22/2006. It has been viewable in Standard Definition, with Closed Captions, since I first subscribed in 2005, but the new HD version does not display those Closed Captions. Thus, I see a progressively worse situation developing, where more and more channels will be broadcast in HD, but the receivers will not be able to provide the display with Closed Captions present in the program and the transmitted signal!

* the date and time when you experienced the captioning problem;

Since the beginning of my new upgrade contract with Dish Network in December 2006 thru the present February 2007. It is and has been "ongoing"!

* the name of the program or show with the captioning problem;

Listed above.

* a detailed description of the captioning problem;

Listed above

* a specific reference to the FCC's closed captioning rules ("47 CFR Part 79.1");

Note: To my knowledge after researching - Dish Network / Echostar does not show as having filed a petition for exemption nor do they have an exemption from providing Closed Captions. And according to the Rules (a) (ii) their provided receiver is supposed to be able to present Closed Captioning to the end-user television. The following rules apply;

Closed Captioning Rules and Regulations - 47 C.F.R. § 79.1

(a) Definitions. For purposes of this section the following definitions shall apply:
(2) Video programming distributor. Any television broadcast station licensed by the Commission and any multichannel video programming distributor as defined in § 76.1000(e) of this chapter, and any other distributor of video programming for residential reception that delivers such programming directly to the home and is subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission. An entity contracting for program distribution over a video programming distributor that is itself exempt from captioning that programming pursuant to paragraph (e)(9) of this section shall itself be treated as a video programming distributor for purposes of this section. To the extent such video programming is not otherwise exempt from captioning, the entity that contracts for its distribution shall be required to comply with the closed captioning requirements of this section.

(ii) Video programming first published or exhibited for display on television receivers equipped for display of digital transmissions or formatted for such transmission and exhibition prior to the date on which such television receivers must, by Commission rule, be equipped with built-in decoder circuitry designed to display closed-captioned digital television transmissions.

(b) Requirements for closed captioning of video programming.
(iv) As of January 1, 2006, and thereafter, 100% of the programming distributor's new nonexempt video programming must be provided with captions.

(c) Obligation to pass through captions of already captioned programs. All video programming distributors shall deliver all programming received from the video programming owner or other origination source containing closed captioning to receiving television households with the original closed captioning data intact in a format that can be recovered and displayed by decoders meeting the standards of part 15 of this chapter unless such programming is recaptioned or the captions are reformatted by the programming distributor.


* your name, street, city, state and zip code, and other contact information such as a phone or TTY number or email address.

[Your Info Here]

* If the video programming distributor fails to respond to your written complaint or a dispute remains after the time allowed for the distributor to respond, you may send the complaint directly to the FCC by mail, fax, or email, as indicated below.

Dish Network customer support failed to provide me with an address, fax number or otherwise where I could submit this complaint.

Also, per the FCC website http://www.fcc.gov/mb/facts/ccfactsh.html "Dish Network" is specifically mentioned!!!

Q: Who is required to provide closed captions under the new rules?

A: The rules require people or companies that distribute television programs directly to home viewers ("video program distributors") to make sure that those programs are captioned. Video program distributors include local broadcast television stations, satellite television services (such as DirecTV, Primestar, and the Dish Network), local cable television operators, and other companies that distribute video programming directly to the home. In some situations, video program providers will be responsible for captioning programs. A video program provider could be a television program network (for example, ABC, NBC, UPN, Lifetime, A&E) or other company that makes a particular television program.

Please addresss this problem as soon as possible.

Thank You and Best Regards,
--------

Below is the original online FCC complaint form outline;



Filing Closed Captioning Complaints

For captioning problems during non-emergency programming, the FCC's rules require that consumers first complain in writing to their television distributor (i.e., your cable or satellite TV service, or the TV station if you do not pay for cable, satellite or another subscription video service).

The FCC rules establish specific time limits for filing closed captioning complaints. Your written complaint to the distributor should be sent before the end of the calendar quarter following the calendar quarter when the problem happened.

For example, if the problem occurred on May 3, 2006 (2nd quarter), your complaint must be filed by September 30, 2006 (end of 3rd quarter). The TV distributor must respond in writing to your complaint within the time period established in the FCC's rules at 47 CFR Part 79.1(g)(3) -- that is, within about 45 days of receipt of your written complaint.

Your written complaint addressed to the video programming distributor must provide specific information about the closed captioning problem and should include:

* the television channel number and call sign or name (e.g., Channel 22 WZZZ, Channel 106 The Story Channel);

* the date and time when you experienced the captioning problem;

* the name of the program or show with the captioning problem;

* a detailed description of the captioning problem;

* a specific reference to the FCC's closed captioning rules ("47 CFR Part 79.1");

* your name, street, city, state and zip code, and other contact information such as a phone or TTY number or email address.

If the video programming distributor fails to respond to your written complaint or a dispute remains after the time allowed for the distributor to respond, you may send the complaint directly to the FCC by mail, fax, or email, as indicated below.

When forwarding your complaint to the FCC, you must send an original and two copies within 30 days of the deadline for the TV distributor to respond -- that is, within 30 days after the 45 day period in which the TV distributor should reply to your written complaint.

Your complaint to the FCC should include a signed letter from you showing that you first sent a written complaint and supporting facts or evidence to the video programming distributor. Also, you must mail a copy of the complaint and supporting evidence that you send to the FCC to the video programming distributor (to let the distributor know you have now complained to the FCC).

Supporting evidence may include videotapes, copies of schedules showing the CC logo for programming that was shown without closed captioning, or other material. You may file your complaint by:
 
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