[opendtv] Re: FCC seventh further notice of proposed rule making

  • From: Tom Barry <trbarry@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 26 Oct 2006 12:07:22 -0400



Manfredi, Albert E wrote:
> Whenever I hear talk about eliminating OTA TV, it sounds like people
> calling for elimination of the public beaches in California (for
> example). Who could possibly want that, unless for his own personal
> gain? It doesn't make sense otherwise. If politicians call for
> elimination of OTA TV, my immediate reaction is that the guy is on the
> take.

I don't expect OTA broadcasters to be eliminated by Congress. I'd more expect them to be done away with by the networks. As affiliate contracts come up for renewal the networks have to consider the value added by having a local OTA broadcaster and how that affects ad revenues. Eventually some breaking point will be reached where the broadcasters cut a deal with the local cable companies directly, or else with a local non-OTA non-broadcaster agent of some sort that just adds some local content and ads and then negotiates very cheap retrans consent with the cable companies. Note the big networks don't have to rely on must-carry.

I truly believe local OTA broadcasters will be competing with these agents in the future if the cable companies don't/can't do it themselves.

- Tom



Tom Barry wrote:


But the real question in the future may be "Who needs
Broadband?".  If the answer to that is going to be
"everybody" then you might have to explain how you can
get broadband without having some sort of TV substitute
anyway.

Remember, as currently bundled on Comcast broadband I
actually pay a negative amount for lifeline cable,
including the HD OTA channels.  It is currently bundled
to be cheaper than 'free'.


I agree completely in principle. As an intellectual exercise, you have
to wonder why you need multiple pipes for these wideband services.
Eventually, the IP pipe itself could provide all you need. I'm with you
there, on a purely technical plane.

Interestingly enough, the same person who is all excited about his newly
discovered DTT reception got FiOS service from Verizon for his Internet
broadband. Except he did not want to pay for, and be beholden to, the
FiOS IPTV for his TV channels. The price structure is not as you
describe with Verizon, apparently. In your case, I'd say Comcast has
made it so attractive that people can't help but "get hooked." Then the
rates will creep up and up because they have you by the ... .

OTA TV, as long as it's "free," is still the only way to receive TV that
is intrinsically competitive. You get multiple networks over the same
publically owned medium. So, while you are going to be beholden to a
single private company for your two-way comm link, you can avoid
becoming dependent on a single provider for the one-way comms. Not
technically mandatory, I agree.

Whenever I hear talk about eliminating OTA TV, it sounds like people
calling for elimination of the public beaches in California (for
example). Who could possibly want that, unless for his own personal
gain? It doesn't make sense otherwise. If politicians call for
elimination of OTA TV, my immediate reaction is that the guy is on the
take.

Bert
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-- Tom Barry trbarry@xxxxxxxxxxx Find my resume and video filters at www.trbarry.com


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