[opendtv] Re: M/H, Free OTA and Its Programming

  • From: "John Willkie" <johnwillkie@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 29 Jul 2008 09:12:45 -0700

If everything you say is true, it can't be the end of FOTA broadcasting.  To
keep the transmitter going, one program service has to be sent in the clear,
with quality at least equivalent to NTSC.


Let me put it this way: you can't do UDTV within 19.39 mb/seconds, and you
might not be able to do 3-D HDTV within that bit rate either.


There are interesting times ahead.  Did you notice the report mentioned
radio in the title?   M/H would seem to be perfect for radio-type services.


John Willkie



De: opendtv-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:opendtv-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] En
nombre de dan.grimes@xxxxxxxx
Enviado el: Tuesday, July 29, 2008 8:55 AM
Para: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Asunto: [opendtv] M/H, Free OTA and Its Programming


Clearly, broadcasters are looking to M/H as a viable market for fee based
offerings.  It is currently my understanding that FOTA must be provided by a
broadcaster, although this only needs to be one programming stream and the
quality is not regulated. (I say "my understanding" because many things that
I thought were true have been effectively countered on this forum.) 

If M/H for a fee happens on OTA broadcasts, I am betting that the free
portion becomes nothing more than an infomercial channel with ads, promos
and possibly some news (it is largely that today).  There might be some
programming but most programming is already laden with over 20% of the time
spent in commercials.  And the quality will become little more than a
thumbnail's version.  No, once broadcasters get the taste of income from
fees for their broadcast, there will be very little incentive to keep the
quality of FOTA up. 

Now, I'm not saying this is good or bad, I just think it will effectively be
the end of FOTA.  I also think that the contract between the citizen/people
and the broadcaster (FCC/broadcaster) will effectively be forgotten, whereby
the OTA broadcaster will not provide the programming promised in exchange
for the frequency spectrum.  (Of course, this is all predicated on my belief
that there is a contract between the people and the broadcaster, which many
will probably argue does not exist.) 

While I would be tempted to rally the citizens to file complaints against
the broadcaster to go back to providing what they owe the community, I doubt
it would do much good.  No, the less than 14% of us that use FOTA services
will largely be forgotten or overridden in the society that is driven by and
considerably controlled by money. 

Just my opinion, which is certainly not based on a deep understanding of the
broadcaster's political environment. 


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