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Discussion Starter · #21 · (Edited)
The dvr system is a paid service, simply streaming the live channels by the public is free (to the public). That plus the 'reverse' retransmission fees is what powers LocalBTV. Stations get their signal out to to a much broader market, IF without that system a wide enough audience is unable to recieve those channels, either through ota, or reasonable cost cable/satellite or other means. This was the flaw in LocalBTVs expansion throughout 2020-21. It seemed none (or few) of those markets had extensive numbers of viewers that met enough of those demographics.

For years the way the broadcast licence laws were written from the 1920s through the 1950s, retransmission of signals on the public airways through any medium was allowed within certain restrictions, which aereo and later locast believe they were within. The fact that some shaving of those laws were done in the 90s, which were never tested in the supreme court (and which lower courts have made decisions on without any guidance on whether the original laws from earlier decades could be thrown out or mangled) simply shows that neither aereo or locast had the money to take the case(s) forward, which shows the biggest flaw in the american legal system: those with the gold get the real final decision, or no real decision. And the broadcasters who now make more from their retransmission consent instead of adverts, have the illgotten gold (thanks to congress passing potentially unconstitutional laws, never tested by the Supremes, which remain in force).

So the entire American broadcasting regime, supposedly built on 'public' airways, is down a rabbit hole which will take some billionaire or two to dig it out of. If ever. An entire couple of generations of community resources which were dedicated to bringing distant signals to far flung communities have now been lost. New technologies could help bring it back into balance, but not if it keeps getting strangled in the crib.
 

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The public airwaves are still public, open and free. The broadcast license does not cover alternative means of delivery. SCOTUS did rule on that. The supreme court ruling is the reason why we have the permissive laws we have today that allow rebroadcast of local TV within certain restrictions. Without those permissive laws there would be no rebroadcast. Retransmission would simply be banned. The permissive laws were the remedy (the alternate remedy would be getting the agreement of every content owner before retransmitting their content).

Granting a broadcast license does not obligate a TV station to allow their signal to be retransmitted. If you want to change that, Congress is that a way. Ignoring all laws since the 1950's is not the solution since that would lead to no rebroadcasts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Sorry but you're dead wrong. It's of no use trying to argue on the internet, but I've been a broadcast engineer for over 40 years and one of my aunts is a retired federal judge, and my father helped establish many community cable systems in the pacific northwest from 1950 onwards.

You cant refuse (okay, on the internet you can) the facts. Others can do the public research and come to the same conclusions as I; the system as we have it now is rigged, and will take a huge effort to return the system to benefit the real owners, the american public.
 

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I believe you may have forgotten some of the history over the years. Feel free to check the case laws, supreme court decisions and history of the laws that now allow retransmission.

Early "CATV" was community antenna TV systems (some may call them common antenna TV). The earliest systems were very basic ... OTA signals were received on a tall tower or hill (or a combination of the two) and amplified and distributed via coax to homes. The most basic level of CATV was just a shared antenna that allowed people to receive the signals without putting up their own antennas on towers or moving to a hill. The more advanced systems would shift channels from their original channel frequency to another frequency (6 MHz block down conversion). I visited one community cable head end in the 1990s that still had block down conversion equipment (not a receiver connected to a modulator passing composite signals but an all RF signal path).

Regulation was minimal ... whatever the CATV company could receive they would transmit. There was no requirement to carry a minimal number of local channels. The system could pick and choose what was carried. The first CATV system I watched was the amplified antenna variety (no channel conversion). Nothing on that system originated from outside what today would be called a "DMA".

After spending time out of the country I returned to a different city. This second CATV system served three communities 25 miles apart. The head end in the eastern city could pick up stations 100 miles away and the three systems were linked via microwave. We had the major network stations from three DMAs on our local cable plus the channels from 100-125 miles away that carried their local major sports teams.

None of the stations were protected ... it was up to the cable system to decide whether or not to carry each channel. And while one can spout altruistic messages about "helping" local stations reach viewers in their market, these systems were also "helping" competing stations.

Imagine if you had the best engineered station in town with the clearest signal and furthest reach. The next station in town got a full power but lower coverage license. With no "help" from CATV your signal would reach "East Rural Podunk" and the other station would not. So while you are thanking CATV for reaching people who would rather pay to be on a shared antenna than put up their own system, save a sarcastic "thank you" for delivering your competitors signal.

Consider the second CATV system that had competing network signals. If you work at a network affiliate ask how much your station pays for the "exclusive" rights to that programming and then tell me you are happy that some CATV system is providing channels from three areas ... providing competition to your station. How about the syndicated programming your station pays for? Do you want that to be delivered to your viewers via some other station's feed (with the other station's advertising being seen instead of yours)?

While stations complained about the other stations CATV delivered the problem became greater when "CATV" became "Cable TV" in the 1980s. National cable channels were created and delivered to CATV systems via satellite providing additional competition to the local stations.

The biggest insult that stations suffered was watching cable become profitable. Instead of being city operated CATV systems run on a "not for profit" basis, stations were seeing commercial companies turn a profit on rebroadcasting content without sharing that profit with the stations.

"1950's regulation" was not working for the stations ... They sued. They won. Copyright law was applied to the station's feeds. Congress reacted by creating a series of regulations that would ALLOW the rebroadcast of stations within certain limits. Cable companies were required to set aside a percentage of their channels for local stations and offer carriage to all stations within their market until that threshold was met. Stations could claim out of market communities as local and force cable companies to carry their signals (if space was available on the system). And stations could choose whether their station must be carried (without compensation) or whether the cable system must compensate the station for the signal.

Nearly all of the laws I can find have been PERMISSIVE ... allowing cable and satellite to deliver signals that they would not be able to carry without such laws. Yes, there are severe restrictions on what the law permits ... but no new laws would mean no carriage for most stations.
 

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The dvr system is a paid service, simply streaming the live channels by the public is free (to the public). That plus the 'reverse' retransmission fees is what powers LocalBTV. Stations get their signal out to to a much broader market, IF without that system a wide enough audience is unable to recieve those channels, either through ota, or reasonable cost cable/satellite or other means. This was the flaw in LocalBTVs expansion throughout 2020-21. It seemed none (or few) of those markets had extensive numbers of viewers that met enough of those demographics.

For years the way the broadcast licence laws were written from the 1920s through the 1950s, retransmission of signals on the public airways through any medium was allowed within certain restrictions, which aereo and later locast believe they were within. The fact that some shaving of those laws were done in the 90s, which were never tested in the supreme court (and which lower courts have made decisions on without any guidance on whether the original laws from earlier decades could be thrown out or mangled) simply shows that neither aereo or locast had the money to take the case(s) forward, which shows the biggest flaw in the american legal system: those with the gold get the real final decision, or no real decision. And the broadcasters who now make more from their retransmission consent instead of adverts, have the illgotten gold (thanks to congress passing potentially unconstitutional laws, never tested by the Supremes, which remain in force).

So the entire American broadcasting regime, supposedly built on 'public' airways, is down a rabbit hole which will take some billionaire or two to dig it out of. If ever. An entire couple of generations of community resources which were dedicated to bringing distant signals to far flung communities have now been lost. New technologies could help bring it back into balance, but not if it keeps getting strangled in the crib.
I have the app on my roku and the DVR is free. Local BTV is technically all free in Philly. The intent was for them to get agreements with all major networks and then start charging. The problem is they haven't made agreements with the networks and just have some independent stations.

In Philly, the valuable channels are WPHL (primary signal), Antenna TV off its subchannel, and Cozi TV off of WCAU, get TV, and one non PBS non commercial educational station off WLVT that isn't blocked by PBS negotiations. They also have NewsNet but that's available free elsewhere.

They have some other channels that are mostly infomercial. I'd delete the app but like the few channels listed above.
 

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The SLC market is large, but a lot of that area isn't populated.
Population is the only consideration. Land area doesn't much figure in but it helps gather population when the area covered is greater than that of New England.

Population-wise, SLC-Ogden-Provo is ranked #27 of the 210 markets at a little under 2.1 million.
 

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It appears that Local BTV lost the Nexstar channels after losing PBS. In Philly, this includes WPHL 17 primary and Antenna TV. In NYC, it means Antenna and Rewind TV are gone. One nicety is being able to record classic tv using its dvr.

Local BTV still has Cozi and getTV though, but it's usefulness is getting diminished. It still has NHK World from my local PBS, NewsNet and a few other smaller networks that are nice but it lacks too many of the other digitnets that are available over the air.

Also from touting they will be getting all locals to losing locals isn't a good sign. I'm surprised it managed to get a deal for Cozi via NBC but it might NBC is allowing just the local feeds not the national feed being distributed free.

I like Local BTV's guide and picture in picture availability, and wish frndlyTV or Philo would adopt Local BTV's EPG.
 

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It appears that Local BTV lost the Nexstar channels after losing PBS. In Philly, this includes WPHL 17 primary and Antenna TV. In NYC, it means Antenna and Rewind TV are gone. One nicety is being able to record classic tv using its dvr.

Local BTV still has Cozi and getTV though, but it's usefulness is getting diminished. It still has NHK World from my local PBS, NewsNet and a few other smaller networks that are nice but it lacks too many of the other digitnets that are available over the air.

Also from touting they will be getting all locals to losing locals isn't a good sign. I'm surprised it managed to get a deal for Cozi via NBC but it might NBC is allowing just the local feeds not the national feed being distributed free.

I like Local BTV's guide and picture in picture availability, and wish frndlyTV or Philo would adopt Local BTV's EPG.
Any danger of Local BTV losing Decades or MeTV?
 
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