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Why did none of the non-Big 4 stations join the lawsuit?
What exactly is the non-Big 4 stations you are referring to?

As James said and it states in the article at the top of this thread: "Locast has lost the courtroom skirmish started by CBS, ABC, NBC and Fox"
 

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"If" they are collecting that much money from 3 million subscribers. No one said they are. They have to pay salaries and operational purposes. I am assuming. I don't think you broadcast television service and not have any overhead expenses. However way they are broadcasting their service.
 

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The paperwork filed with the court stated their revenue and expenses.
 

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It may be oversimplifying, but I would wager that any station that chose to opt out of must-carry would be part of the lawsuit.
"Must carry", etc, are FCC rules for cable and satellite that have no bearing on this case. Any station management not asking the court to be included in the suit would be excluded from any settlement. This is not a class action suit.
 

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"Must carry", etc, are FCC rules for cable and satellite that have no bearing on this case. Any station management not asking the court to be included in the suit would be excluded from any settlement. This is not a class action suit.
As clearly stated, cease and desist is the goal. Stop people from rebroadcasting stations without permission or compensation. The settlement they seek is for Locast to be treated like a MVPD that needs to ask and pay for permission (which would help non-big 4 stations to the same extent that it helps big 4 stations).
 
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"Must carry", etc, are FCC rules for cable and satellite that have no bearing on this case.
My point is that these stations want people to use cable or satellite, where they can charge for retransmission. They want to shut down other options where they don't get paid. Stations on must-carry probably don't care how their broadcast gets out as long as it is intact.
 

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As clearly stated, cease and desist is the goal. Stop people from rebroadcasting stations without permission or compensation. The settlement they seek is for Locast to be treated like a MVPD that needs to ask and pay for permission (which would help non-big 4 stations to the same extent that it helps big 4 stations).
I agree, bur if the courts award any monetary damages for past actions, only those included in the lawsuit will share in them.
 

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Lawyers can be expensive. These battles are typically fought by the big four networks or the big four networks and their affiliates. The "if" on the courts awarding a monetary fine is big. The "if" on Locast being able to pay any monetary damages is even bigger. $0 divided by hundreds of carried stations that were illegally carried is not a big number.
 

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All this talk is simply trying to figure out a way to get around people who simply move the goal posts with their billions spent on shady lawyers and bought off judges. The first thing I learned in broadcast engineering class 50 years ago, was that a federal license was, in essence, a licence to print money. No matter what the law says, or how it is 'interperted', at the end of the day those with huge monetary incentive to keep things exactly the way they are will use any argument, no matter how convoluted or nonsensical, to maintain that flow of cash into their back pocket. That is the 'American Way'.

So, what has to be found is a way to interrupt that flow, of which there are two main sources. One of those, the retransmission fees, is already under pretty significant challenge and has been for several years by the satellite folks in particular. Cable, not so much, as they must figure they have a captive subscriber base, especially with the increasing number of renters in US society that can't simply bolt a dish to their home. However, in the near future, wireless internet from cellular companies may make some inroads.

But their other income source, advertisements, is based on, to me over the years, figures that mostly come from one company, that even to the big networks has been shady at best (as they keep suing this company every few years for more clarity in their figures). Its easy to simply total up the cable and satellite subscriber households and present those as the numbers who are watching the adverts, and come up with rates that make sense. But wait, what about antenna folks, or the numbers of households that, to quote Sheldon, are unable to recieve those signals due to Physics? And then there are the hoa's that ban antennas, or the communities that insert anti-antenna ordinances into property deeds?

Well, this company simply assumes that all those households that don't subscribe to the companies paying retransmission all have the ability to recieve via antenna, realistically or not. That keeps the viewership numbers, and resulting advert rates, nice and high. Simply take the census numbers from any dma and that gives them the result they want.

Don't think that's what is done? Even those big networks can't get the real numbers, Comcast/NBC Universal is still trying to pry how the numbers don't make sense from this company. I think EFF should join in that lawsuit, if for anything, to look under the rock and see what crawls out.
 

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How come when you subscribe to cable, they charge extra for locals, but don't allow you to opt out? Seems rather shady. I was checking Xfinity, and they charge $14.95 on top of their "cable package" price for locals, but dont let you opt out. Seems like false advertising. They should have to include EVERY CHANNEL you cannot opt out of getting in their "package price", no small print that its plus $14.95 for locals, and plus $8.00 for the RSN channel, plus tax plus plus plus
 

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Cable is required to include locals in their lowest level (and all levels above). Satellite does not have that restriction.
The marketing could be better but the fees vary by market and Xfinity wants to have "national" prices like the other national providers.
 

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Cable is required to include locals in their lowest level (and all levels above). Satellite does not have that restriction.
The marketing could be better but the fees vary by market and Xfinity wants to have "national" prices like the other national providers.
OK, so if it is required, why do they hide the extra charge in their package price, and only include the extra $14.95 monthly charge in the fine print you wont see until after you sign up? I was trying to compare charges, and honestly, after reading all the fricking fine print, I couldnt even tell how much it would cost me a month for a cable tv package. There were so many charges, so many credits for this and that (that only kick in 3 months later), and other BS, it was a total nightmare compared with the flat rate streaming services. I dont see how anyone deals with them.
 

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They hide it for the obvious reason, and why cablecos are, for just shy of 100% of the citizens, the most despised corporate entities in the country. What one might ask is why the broadcasters aren't as universally hated, since they are the ones taking the public airwaves, that are by law supposed to be free, and monitizing them. We all know why; greed and able to shift blame.

Then again, why do people watch them? Most of these 'local' stations are now owned by conglomerates, many of which are in turn owned by billionaires who are easily shown to be unamerican at their core. Congress and the fcc allowed this concentration to happen, and it's going to take a huge effort to turn it around. Programming, compared to 10 or 20 years ago is filled with 'reality', unscripted trash. Most of the scripted shows are derivatives of popular programs of many years past. Cheap is the word.

The community programming of years ago has mostly dissapeared from the local 'news', replaced by slickly produced regional fare usually from the other side of the country, pushing ideas complely foreign, at least in my neck of the woods, to those in the west. Except maybe in the compounds of northern idaho where bombers, bank robbers, and vigilantes hang out.

So it's like a lot of problems, fed by years of neglect with only one idea being pushed: maximum return on investment.

But one only has to look at real statistics, and they show broadcast tv is actually falling down in viewership so fast its whiplash time, despite what the main 'national' ratings service says. If these folks eventually see reality, they may just wake up, but if they don't pretty fast they may be doomed.
 

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As I recall, Dish broke out the locals as a separate line item on our bills so we could see what we were paying for them before they started offering the opt-out option.
 

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Lets see here.... DFW Market (#5):
  • ABC (WFAA) - Tegna Inc.
  • CBS (KTVT) - CBS O&O
  • NBC (KXAS) - NBC O&O
  • Fox (KDFW) - Fox O&O
Sacramento Market (#20):
  • ABC (KXTV) - Tegna Inc.
  • CBS (KOVR) - CBS O&O
  • NBC (KCRA) - Hearst Television
  • Fox (KTXL) - Nexstar Media Group
It's all part of the Retransmission content which was passed in 1992 as part of the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act which was veto-ed by President Bush on October 3rd, 1992, only to have the veto overridden two days later by both legislative chambers. As local advertising revenues have dried up, the stations have been looking to make up that income through retransmission fees, partially because the stations have to pay the networks for carriage. (And, ages ago, the networks paid the stations for carriage. Blame the increasing sports rights costs.)

Should the fees be broken out? Yes. Will they? Probably not due to contractual restrictions.
 

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Lets see here.... DFW Market (#5):
  • ABC (WFAA) - Tegna Inc.
  • CBS (KTVT) - CBS O&O
  • NBC (KXAS) - NBC O&O
  • Fox (KDFW) - Fox O&O
Sacramento Market (#20):
  • ABC (KXTV) - Tegna Inc.
  • CBS (KOVR) - CBS O&O
  • NBC (KCRA) - Hearst Television
  • Fox (KTXL) - Nexstar Media Group
It's all part of the Retransmission content which was passed in 1992 as part of the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act which was veto-ed by President Bush on October 3rd, 1992, only to have the veto overridden two days later by both legislative chambers. As local advertising revenues have dried up, the stations have been looking to make up that income through retransmission fees, partially because the stations have to pay the networks for carriage. (And, ages ago, the networks paid the stations for carriage. Blame the increasing sports rights costs.)

Should the fees be broken out? Yes. Will they? Probably not due to contractual restrictions.
Dish breaks out the charge to subscribers for the locals package that can be opted out, not the actual cost per station. I expect the local stations are not getting paid for those subscribers that opt out.
 

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As I recall, Dish broke out the locals as a separate line item on our bills so we could see what we were paying for them before they started offering the opt-out option.
DISH's breakout is a national rate. It costs the same for locals in NY and LA where there are multiple channels to uplink as it does in smaller markets where there are only five or six channels to carry, That does not show the cost of the locals on a per market basis. We can see what we are paying DISH for the locals but we cannot see what DISH is paying the stations for carriage rights.

The breakout has provided DISH the same benefit Xfinity and other providers have ... the ability to advertise a lower price. In DISH's case it is legal for them to make locals optional. Although they are required to offer carriage to all local stations in all markets, they are not required to force their customers to subscribe to local channels. They are required to sell the locals as a group (can't sell Sinclair separate from Gray separate from Tenga). Due to "lifeline service" laws passed decades ago, cable companies ARE required to force their customers to subscribe to local channels.

Neither cable or satellite are required to accept any carriage deal offered by a station that chooses "consent to carry". The station could request a penny per subscriber per year and could be refused carriage if the cable/satellite company does not want to pay. Based on industry reports it is more likely that most network stations are charging over $1 per month and looking to raise that fee as high as the market will bear. When a carriage agreement cannot be reached or expires carriage ends.

I *HOPE* that stations are not getting paid for DISH customers who opt out but I can see the major conglomerates asking for such a fee. Most stations do not care whether or not their signal reaches the subscribers - they just want to be paid for those subscribers so asking for a fee based on the total number of DISH subscribers in a market instead of the number of local channel subscribers in a market would not surprise me.
 
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