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  • Judge halts over-the-air TV streaming by Locast

    Home Forums AskWoody blog Judge halts over-the-air TV streaming by Locast

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      • Brian Livingston
        AskWoody MVP

        ISSUE 18.35 • 2021-09-13 PUBLIC DEFENDER By Brian Livingston A nonprofit organization that uses the Internet to stream live, over-the-air television s
        [See the full post at: Judge halts over-the-air TV streaming by Locast]

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389407
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Damn greedy TV stations!   Absent pure greed, one would expect they would welcome wider dissemination of their content because the more eyes that see it, the more they can charge for their ads.

        Since you mentioned “cutting the cable”, I looked into doing so but it did not make sense for me.   First, if I cut the cable, bye, bye, internet service because the cable company is my ISP.  Yes, I could get DSL from the ILEC  but it would cost more for less bandwidth.  Second, I’d need to purchase additional bandwidth because I do not want to blow through my 1.25TB cap.  Remember the old days when cell phone plans included a set number of minutes per month – and when exceeding that quota cost a fortune?  Cable data is about the same way.   Then there’s the matter of lining up a content provider, like the one mentioned in the article.  Those are not free.

        When the dust settled, I would still have been stuck with prefined content packages, including stuff of absolutely zero interest, and not much less expensive than the packages I have with the cable company.  I’d have some sort of jury-rigged way of getting local stations, which we watch a lot, that might or might not work on all my TVs.  Lastly, the cable company’s DVR is very nice and holds a lot.

        In short, I would save relatively little each month and have a less convenient “solution” to watching TV, which, after all, is not supposed to be an exercise in technology mastery.

        • #2389494
          anonymous
          Guest

          You can get internet-only cable service. And you can buy your own DVR to save over-the-air broadcasts.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2389555
            MHCLV941
            AskWoody Plus

            You can get internet-only cable service. And you can buy your own DVR to save over-the-air broadcasts.

            I am well aware of this.   Assuming you are correct that I could buy a DVR for over-the-air broadcasts, the recordings would only be available on the TV to which it was attached.   That is not acceptable.

            I will restate my bottom line on “cutting the cable”: it does not work for me for a variety of reasons that are sufficient to me.   Your evaluation may indeed be different for your own reasons.  Good luck with it.

            • #2389590
              rc primak
              AskWoody_MVP

              the recordings would only be available on the TV to which it was attached.

              Really? Tell that to Sillicon Dust (HD Home Run makers)

              Home v2

              -- rc primak

              2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2389901
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          About Livingston’s mention of  “cord-cutting” as a useful thing more people are increasingly doing, meaning the idea of streaming TV content over the internet rather than getting it from cable, and what is in it for me, OscarCP: In my case, it is possible to stop receiving TV and continue to have internet access, because mi ISP is Verizon and now, where I live, landline telephone, TV and internet service are all connected to the rest of the world over the same fiber-optic cable, not cooper wire or coaxial cable anymore, except for the distances between the ONT box installed on a wall inside a closet in my apartment and my telephone, TV set and Internet router, still all copper. So the internet, cable TV and land line telephone service arrive into the ONT box, all three together, over the same optical fiber cable, but are separate services offered independently of each other. Besides the internet, I also want to keep my landline telephone service. But even while Verizon would agree to a telephone-and-internet-only deal, after much harrumphing about it, it turns out that a TV-cutting deal would cost me more than keeping the TV service, something I am doing now even if now very rarely watch TV. It is a ripoff, someone might reasonably argue, but is some $50 a month, or $600 a year ripoff that I can well afford, even if I don’t like it, as the no-TV alternative would be a still bigger one. So I just knuckle under and I live with it, because such are the times we are in, and because I also have other and better things to do than to fight “The Telephone Company” on my own.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389434
        anonymous
        Guest

        Looks like the creators of Locast didn’t do their due diligence before launching.

        Two similar services were shut down by the courts in 2014 (aereo) and 2015 (FilmOn).

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aereo#Legal_challenges

        Alex

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2389448
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          This judge was wrong and, assuming the cases from 2014 and 2015 really are similar, the judges in those cases were wrong, too.   Locast was increasing these stations’ viewer numbers; isn’t this was TV stations are trying to do all the time?   Seems pretty stupid to me that they would even kick.  After all, they already give away their content for free to anyone with an antenna.

          • #2389591
            rc primak
            AskWoody_MVP

            I disagree. Longer post in a separate sub-thread here.

            -- rc primak

      • #2389461
        anonymous
        Guest

        I subscribed to LoCast for one reason – it allowed me to watch Jeopardy while commuting. I don’t have a TV in my car so no antenna would ever help, but with LoCast I could play along while making that 4:30-5:00 drive so much better.

        • #2389558
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          I subscribed to LoCast for one reason – it allowed me to watch Jeopardy while commuting. I don’t have a TV in my car so no antenna would ever help, but with LoCast I could play along while making that 4:30-5:00 drive so much better.

          You are frightening!  I sincerely hope you live someplace that gets snow so you are not a danger to me or my family and friends.   For this one application, I am happy Locast is no more.

          2 users thanked author for this post.
          • #2389640
            anonymous
            Guest

            It may not be that bad.  I can stream espn for F1 races. I can cord it to my sound system and listen(keyword listen) to it in my car.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
            • #2389664
              OscarCP
              AskWoody Plus

              And as it seems to happen when people who are driving hear the commentary of a car race, or on their way home after watching one, you start going a bit faster  …

              Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

              MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
              Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
              Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

              • #2389705
                Alex5723
                AskWoody Plus

                I listen/watch live concerts on my car’s infotainment system while driving 🙂

            • #2389670
              MHCLV941
              AskWoody Plus

              At least your eyes are presumably still on the road, even if your mind is at the track!

              1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389471
        anonymous
        Guest

        On Sling Orange versus Blue, it seems to be Blue not Orange that omits the sports channels.  I was checking into this a few days when I was considering a subscription in order to watch the US Open.  See: https://www.businessinsider.com/sling-tv-channels#sling-blue-35month-2

         

         

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389546
        anonymous
        Guest

        ? says:

        what ever happened to “Must-carry.” oh, was it “Retransmission consent?” ever actually try to watch Locast w/o donating to the cause?

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389592
        rc primak
        AskWoody_MVP

        “Due to the rising cost of satellite and cable, I am unable to afford even the basic package and have no other way to watch the local news. Without Locast, my family would not have known about the tornado and flood warning in my area on 02-06-2020.”

        In many markets served by Locast and Aereo before them, this statement is simply not true. Local broadcasters offer their news and emergency broadcast streams free over normal Internet connections, through any web browser on a Windows PC or laptop, or to any Android or iPhone smart phone.

        Where Locast and Aereo got into trouble is that they competed with the local broadcasters’ streaming services, which are totally free of charge.

        So don’t go whining to me about Locast providing a service which was not otherwise available in many of the same markets. This just simply was not and is not true.

        It doesn’t take a lot of revenue to make a few pirates wealthy. And it doesn’t take a lot of pirates to operate a local or global retransmission service. Even with pirated Guides.

        That’s what Locast and Aereo were doing. Nothing more. And nothing less.

        The rulings were correct in both cases. The two cases are not identical, but sufficiently similar to be treated as essentially the same violations. Not one penny of the revenues from either project went to offset the loss of advertising revenues when the local stations did not get paid for the content which was being retransmitted. Yes, the ads ran, but no, the broadcasters did not get paid for them. That represents a loss of operating revenues from the broadcasters without compensation. In other words — theft of services.

        The “rabbit ears” straw-man argument is simply not true, for the reason that free streams are available for local content, at least news and emergency broadcasts, from nearly every local broadcaster in the US.

        Sling TV and Pluto TV have contracts with those broadcasters and cable channels whose content they stream. Literally Apples and “Orange”.

        While I subscribe to TiVo and have a TiVo Stream and a Chromecast dongle, I have also used a Sling Box when I had AT&T’s UVerse service. These and the current Sling TV option are just a few among many ways to legitimately get the fullest range of available streams in uyour market. The article has some very good information on these options. Combined with a good old PC or laptop (or iPad) these options should cover almost everyone in most US markets.

        But novel technologies have a way of disrupting even the largest empires. We haven’t seen the end of this movie.

        So true, so very true! And as long as the revenue streams are clearly defined and point to proper compensation to broadcasters and content owners (and actors and other performers), I have no problem with progress.

        -- rc primak

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2389608
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          Where Locast and Aereo got into trouble is that they competed with the local broadcasters’ streaming services, which are totally free of charge.

          So don’t go whining to me about Locast providing a service which was not otherwise available in many of the same markets. This just simply was not and is not true.

          Not one penny of the revenues from either project went to offset the loss of advertising revenues when the local stations did not get paid for the content which was being retransmitted. Yes, the ads ran, but no, the broadcasters did not get paid for them. That represents a loss of operating revenues from the broadcasters without compensation. In other words — theft of services.

          You make a couple of rather breathtaking assertions.  Provide documentation for both.

          • #2389823
            rc primak
            AskWoody_MVP

            Neither service had any contracts with local broadcasters. How else will they repay the advertising revenues lost by the local stations?

            -- rc primak

      • #2389609
        JohnW
        AskWoody Plus

        The judge’s argument sounds pretty weak to me. In my opinion, Locast might be able to win on appeal, but sadly, it sounds like they are through either way. Never tried Locast, but it sound like a good idea!

        Anyway, I have been successful more or less, in receiving OTA (Over-The-Air) DTV for the past 16 years. In other words, no cable TV, and I just pay for cable internet service.

        I stream select paid premium services over the internet, but the OTA DTV fills the gap for my live local TV.

        OTA is good if you are close enough to a transmitting tower to lock in a good signal. The RF (radio frequency) signal used for DTV is line of sight only, so you can quickly get out of range, and obstacles like hills, tall buildings, trees, walls, etc., can interfere with reception. If you are in a situation where you can put up an outdoor antenna, that is optimal. But if like me, you are in a condo or apartment, the reception with an indoor antenna can be a real challenge!

        I started with an antenna and an internal PCI TV tuner card, but that requires a dedicated PC. I eventually found a USB receiver dongle that can tune 2 channels at the same time, and feed them into any PC or laptop running the tuner drivers. And for the more tech inclined folks, it is relatively easy to dedicate a spare PC for a roll-your-own DVR to record programs.

        This is what I’m running now. https://hauppauge.com/pages/products/data_dualhd.html

        WinTV-dualHD TV Tuner
        Dual tuners: watch one channel while recording another, record two programs at the same time, have picture-in-picture or two complete TV windows!
        WinTV-dualHD: Two TV receivers with picture-in-picture
        WinTV-dualHD: Two TV receivers with picture-in-picture
        click to enlarge
        For Windows and Plex based systems (Windows and Linux)

        Includes the Hauppauge WinTV v10 application for Windows. Or get the latest version of Plex Media Server, which supports the WinTV-dualHD for TV recording on Windows and Linux.
        For free over-the-air ATSC HD TV and clear QAM digital cable TV

        Plug the WinTV-dualHD into a USB port on your Windows PC or laptop and you can watch, pause & record two channels of ATSC and clear QAM High Definition and Standard Definition TV. WinTV-dualHD has two compete TV tuners so you can:

        Record one TV program while watching another
        Record two TV program at the same time
        Have picture-in-picture
        Or have two complete TV windows on your PC screen at the same time!

        3 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2389610
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        I disagree. Longer post in a separate sub-thread here.

        You’re welcome to your opinion.  I do not share it.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389614
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        the recordings would only be available on the TV to which it was attached.

        Really? Tell that to Sillicon Dust (HD Home Run makers)

        Home v2

        I looked at the Dust products and none are suitable for my purposes.  I am not interested in collections of boxes that do various things because my wife would not stand for it.  And I am much more interested in her happiness than yours.

         

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389618
        JohnW
        AskWoody Plus

        I am not interested in collections of boxes that do various things because my wife would not stand for it. And I am much more interested in her happiness than yours.

        Ah, the wife acceptance factor (WAF). Very important with tech stuff. Happy wife, happy life! 🙂

        5 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2389622
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        I did not know about the story with local-over-the air commercial stations’ content being streamed by someone else. Properly implemented, I suppose it might be a good idea in places where there are many people living far from the local stations but with Internet access, or those without it where satellite or rebroadcast tower transmissionss are blocked by the terrain in some mountain areas at higher latitudes.

        Living in the USA and with sufficient access to the Internet and with a serious distaste for every-ten-minutes commercials, I do stream radio and TV programs — except for special things such as national elections-related events publicly available from private TV channels — only from public NPR radio stations and PBS TV stations: a radio network and a TV network created by law and partly supported by the US Government, an arrangement somewhat like the one of the BBC in the UK, but only partly, as the stations need to get the rest of their funding from donations by listeners (no TV tax exists here) and sponsorships from private companies, so they include segments of soft advertising. In other words: a non-profit, public-private partnership.

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

        MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
        Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
        Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

        • #2389626
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          I did not know about the story with local over the air commercial stations’ content being streamed by someone else. Properly implemented, I suppose it might be a good idea in places where there are many people living far from the local stations, particular those with limited or, for some reason, no access to the Internet.

          You spotlighted something that nagged at me from the initial post about needing Locast because nothing else was affordable by the poster: if you don’t have an internet connection of some sort, you cannot steam anything.  From this perspective, Locast makes a lot less sense than it initially seemed.

          Lack of access to the internet is not at all uncommon in the United States.  When schools went to remote learning last year and scrambled for Chromebooks and the like for students without computers at home, they quickly found out that those same students didn’t have internet service, either.  In urban areas, these students were ones living at poverty levels or even somewhat above.

          In rural areas, the problem is not necessarily money, though poverty/low income is not restricted to cities.   It is that there simply is no internet service.  There is no economic incentive for ISPs to extend their coverage when the “last mile” may actually be tens of miles to reach just one customer.   Electric and telephone services did not get to folks in the hinterlands because power companies and telcos are more high-minded or big-hearted than are ISPs but because various programs, many of them government or government-supported, absorbed the cost of doing.   To date, there seems to be nothing similar for internet services, though, at the moment, Congress seems to be playing around with some.

          3 users thanked author for this post.
          • #2389633
            OscarCP
            AskWoody Plus

            MHCLV941 : You are quite right: the needs of country folks often seemed to be an afterthought, if that, of those in government — including judges making broad-reaching, precedent-making decisions, it would seem — and those of the poor, anywhere, even more so.

            And a special request for a favor: please, don’t you drive while watching TV, OK?

            Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

            MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
            Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
            Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389625
        JohnW
        AskWoody Plus

        Living in the USA and with sufficient access to the Internet, I do stream radio and TV programs — except for special things such as national elections-related events publicly available from private TV channels — only from public NPR radio stations and PBS TV stations: a radio network and a TV network created by law and partly supported by the US Government, an arrangement somewhat like the one of the BBC in the UK, but only partly, as the stations need to get the rest of their funding from donations by listeners (no TV tax exists here) and private companies, so they include segments of soft advertising. In other words: a non-profit, public-private partnership.

        I was surprised to discover that with my Roku streaming device, I could pick up my live local PBS station. Nice!

        And they have a decent back catalogue of PBS network programs like Nova, Frontline, and PBS Newshour available for easy streaming access! Which is good thing, because my OTA reception of PBS is a bit iffy where I live! 🙂

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2389630
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          JohnW: I am glad that my comment has been beneficial to you, but less so that you have quoted my comment removing the brief explanation of the simple and not exclusively mine reason of why I don’t watch commercial TV, over-the-air or not, and only public stations. Without that quite personal motivation explained, I might appear like some anti-commercial-TV, anti-business, anti-capitalism-in-any-form, obsessive. When one does such editing, the thing to do is to indicate that there is more in the original not included in the quote with three dots:” … ” in the place where the omission has been made.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2389636
            MHCLV941
            AskWoody Plus

            MHCLV941 : You are quite right: the needs of country folks often seemed to be an afterthought, if that, of those in government — including judges making broad-reaching, precedent-making decisions, it would seem — and those of the poor, anywhere, even more so.

            And a special request for a favor: please, don’t you drive while watching TV, OK?

            Last item first.  I do not drive while watching TV.  I was quoting an anonymous post (#2389461)  

            subscribed to LoCast for one reason – it allowed me to watch Jeopardy while commuting. I don’t have a TV in my car so no antenna would ever help, but with LoCast I could play along while making that 4:30-5:00 drive so much better

            My post back is:

            You are frightening!  I sincerely hope you live someplace that gets snow so you are not a danger to me or my family and friends.   For this one application, I am happy Locast is no more.

            Now that we’ve established I have no desire to kill myself or anyone else on the road, part of me agrees that poor and rural tend to be less than top-of-mind.  To be honest, I have a lot less sympathy for rural folks who are not also poor.

            Such people have made a decision that they want to live in the “country” because they like it there and don’t like it in the “city”.   It does not seem that my tax dollars should go towards providing them with selected amenities that are more-or-less commonly available in the “city” which they otherwise avoid.   Living in the country is like living in the city.  There are good things about both and bad things about both.   One lives where the “goods” outweigh the “bads” and that’s perfectly fine as long as one does not expect others to underwrite mitigating the “bads” out of their pockets.

            • #2389645
              OscarCP
              AskWoody Plus

              MHCLV941: “To be honest, I have a lot less sympathy for rural folks who are not also poor.

              Well, there are more than rich and poor in the countryside and in villages without a local TV or radio station, or a good enough Internet connection, so let’s spare a thought for the ones that are neither and are not there purely by choice, but because that is their home patch, where, as much as some of them might travel the world, they really belong on this world.

              And by the way, on something that has come up earlier here: I am not dead-set against commercial TV’s commercials, only the peculiar way they are distributed here in the USA. I have lived in countries where the commercials are presented in blocks between programs, as is in the case of Public Radio here, or at the very beginning, as in the case of Public TV. I much dislike watching a dramatic comedy when romance, that has been circling the lead couple from high above for the last 20 or so episodes, does a final approach and is about to touchdown on the runaway of life with a mighty kiss, when … someone starts cleaning a toilet, right there and then, and informs me that I better get SuperToiletClean XYZ with powerful nasty things exterminator W, and use it right away if I want to prevent catching, me and my loved ones, some awful toilet-transmitted disease.

              And would I be correct in guessing that the “anonymous poet” you were quoting is no longer with us?

              Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

              MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
              Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
              Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

              1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2389654
            MHCLV941
            AskWoody Plus

             I might appear like some anti-commercial-TV, anti-business, anti-capitalism-in-any-form, obsessive.

            All I got was that you like commercials as much as most folks…

            1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2389646
        JohnW
        AskWoody Plus

        JohnW: I am glad that my comment has been beneficial to you, but less so that you have quoted my comment removing the brief explanation of the simple and not exclusively mine reason of why I don’t watch commercial TV, over-the-air or not, and only public stations. Without that quite personal motivation explained, I might appear like some anti-commercial-TV, anti-business, anti-capitalism-in-any-form, obsessive. When one does such editing, the thing to do is to indicate that there is more in the original not included in the quote with three dots:” … ” in the place where the omission has been made.

        Just trying to be concise. You have already expressed your opinion, and I just wanted to quote the part that I was responding directly to. No slight intended.

        A pet peeve of mine is those that quote entire threads, rather than focusing on a specific point.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2389651
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          And would I be correct in guessing that the “anonymous poet” you were quoting is no longer with us?

          Well, he/she was still a menace to traffic about 10 hours ago when the past was made.  I hope the only casualty – aside from him/her/it – is a light post and not a school bus.  I don’t wish this person ill, just that the only damage such stupidity will cause is limited to that fool.

          That’s the wonder of a DVR – fast forward through commercials… And the mute button in the off chance we’re watching in real time.

        • #2389652
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          A pet peeve of mine is those that quote entire threads, rather than focusing on a specific point.

          One person’s desert is another person’s moldy cheese…

      • #2389659
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        As to being too far from the nearest station, a recollection others of the right age group (and I hope nobody who is younger) might share with me:

        When I was a boy, where I lived then, TV (Black and White) reached us from far away: 200 km away, to be more precise.

        Never mind that: our native ingenuity solved the problem and every house with a TV set had this some 10-15 meters high antenna on the roof, with a big amplifier booster and impedance matching gadgets placed between the Yagi (*) feed line and the TV set, and we would watch wonderful, more or less snowy shows all the time that we could watch anything. The town looked like a science-fiction movie-set with a forest of these strange contraptions raising from the houses to the sky.

        While this could be one way around for getting TV in places with no nearby station, I would think that a better way would be something like those “Fernsehtürme” ( “See-Far (i.e. TV) Towers”) they had in Germany back in the 80’s, when I lived there. Some even had revolving restaurants at the top where one could have a meal and at the same time contemplate the place below in the round.

        (*) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yagi%E2%80%93Uda_antenna

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

        MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
        Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
        Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2389668
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          I only lived that far away from a city about 50 years ago when I was stationed in Del Rio, TX.  San Antonio was not only the nearest large city, about 150 miles away, it was the closest place bigger than 4 bars and two gas stations.

          I don’t know the history of it but the down had a “community antenna” that carried all the San Antonio stations.   It looked a lot like very early cable TV but carried only the San Antonio local stations, which may have been all there was to carry back then.

          Somehow or other I could connect my TV and, lo and beyond, there was the 5 O’clock San Antonio gore score.  (The city had a higher daily body count than Vietnam did at the time)

          I don’t recall if I paid anything for the service or not, but that was the only way one could watch TV in Del Rio (in English anyway; I’m not sure about Mexican stations in town across the border, which was only 5 minutes away).

          1 user thanked author for this post.
          • #2389672
            OscarCP
            AskWoody Plus

            MHCLV941: “I don’t know the history of it but the down had a “community antenna” that carried all the San Antonio stations.

            Same idea as the one behind those transmitter TV towers in Germany, connected by coaxial cable, or microwave link, to the not necessarily nearby broadcasting stations’ signals, except that the one you mentioned was clearly not as fancy. This kind of tower still could be useful for local and also not local TV, only over-the-air in particular, to reach people over a much larger area poorly served by cable, or not at all, if most of it is relatively flat terrain. Perhaps not all that great over 200 km, although now days this might work OK most of the time thanks to the current use of digital TV signals and all the fancy pre-processing and filtering that goes on in the newer receivers.

            Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

            MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
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            Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2389806
        anonymous
        Guest

        ? says:

        community antenna television (CATV) in Del Rio, Texas (WOAI, KENS) came from San Antonio via Uvalde, Texas microwave retransmission provided by Benjamin J. Conroy, Jr. in my area of the weatern US Bill Daniels, Gene Schneider, and Bob Magness brought broadcast tv to the hinterlands in the same fashion.

        https://www.inventionandtech.com/content/birth-cable-tv-1

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2389825
        rc primak
        AskWoody_MVP

        There is much fanfare, though little substance yet, surrounding the coming of fixed 5G wireless Internet and TV services. This would allow rural deployments along the lines of T-Mobile’s rural low-band 5G towers, and in more built-up areas, local high-band (mm wave) 5G neighborhood antennas.

        The support boxes for these antennas can include recycling bins (Big Belly Recycling) and other secondary amenities. Edge processing allows content to be cached and retrieved very near where people live.

        Pricing would be far more affordable than Elon Musk’s satellite based system, and equipment would be more affordable as well. 5G fixed wireless isn’t here yet, but when it arrives, it could be a game changer.

        Add to 5G basic internet some streaming services and local station live streams, a decent D-I-Y DVR, and you’re set. As long as the broadcasters and content owners get paid, there should be few if any non-technical issues.

        Subsidies could make a rollout more atracttive in rural areas and places where people are not rich.  Poorer households could also apply for grants and credits for their Internet service and equipment costs.

        The future is arriving sooner than some folks might think.

        -- rc primak

      • #2389854
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        There is much fanfare, though little substance yet, surrounding the coming of fixed 5G wireless Internet and TV services. This would allow rural deployments along the lines of T-Mobile’s rural low-band 5G towers, and in more built-up areas, local high-band (mm wave) 5G neighborhood antennas.

        The support boxes for these antennas can include recycling bins (Big Belly Recycling) and other secondary amenities. Edge processing allows content to be cached and retrieved very near where people live.

        Pricing would be far more affordable than Elon Musk’s satellite based system, and equipment would be more affordable as well. 5G fixed wireless isn’t here yet, but when it arrives, it could be a game changer.

        Add to 5G basic internet some streaming services and local station live streams, a decent D-I-Y DVR, and you’re set. As long as the broadcasters and content owners get paid, there should be few if any non-technical issues.

        Subsidies could make a rollout more atracttive in rural areas and places where people are not rich.  Poorer households could also apply for grants and credits for their Internet service and equipment costs.

        The future is arriving sooner than some folks might think.

        This sounds way too much like a marketing pitch for T-Mobile.  Assuming one tower could cover enough customers to make it economically viable, what would it use for backhaul?  Presumably not the bandwidth it is supposed to be using for the paying customers?

        It’s not cheap to get into Musk’s system because someone has to foot the bill for the ground terminal, but it does work.

        I’d be very leery of T-Mobile.   I switched to it from Verizon because, despite being in a major metropolitan area, I was in such a dead zone that Verizon loaned me a wireless extender.  T-Mobile is a lot cheaper than Verison but that’s also “you get what you pay for”.  Despite my phone getting a strong 5G signal, the internet-using apps on my phone run far better when I let the phone use my Wi-Fi.     Further, I talked to T-Mobile about their home internet offering and found the rep incapable of answering any technical questions, such as whether I could use my own firewall and WAP rather than whatever what in their modem.  Not only could the rep not address the question, but the website reference I was told had also such answers were as clueless as was the rep.   Lastly, my S20 FE 5G will not allow an IKEv2 VPN tunnel from my laptop when it’s a hotspot.  Frankly, I’d go back to Verizon.

      • #2389857
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Neither service had any contracts with local broadcasters. How else will they repay the advertising revenues lost by the local stations?

        Why should they have to repay anything?   Somehow TV stations manage to eke out a living broadcasting their content to all in range for nothing.  People watching that same content on Locast see the same ads and there is nothing so far as I know that reduces the effectiveness of an ad when it gets to one TV set over a wire as opposed to an antenna.  Also, I’ve long been under the impression that the more eyes watch any given content, the higher the cost to put an ad in the middle of it.

        2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2389858
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Auditory distraction causes crashes too.

        Indeed it does but not nearly so much as not watching where one is going.

      • #2389872
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        Now this conversation has entered what to me is very interesting territory, thanks rc primak!

        This raises both the issue of the allocation of frequency bands throughout the finite useful radio spectrum, and of the use of space to re-transmit Internet to the world below.

        In these two respects, both the proposed and some of the actually being deployed new telephony and Internet services over-the-air, or via large satellite constellations, are liable to rise my remaining hairs.

        Fortunately, 5G is not one of these, because its allocated frequencies are much higher than those of GPS, for example. But 5G is only one component of the ongoing fight to get more bandwidth for telephony regardless of the needs of reserving some of this for essential services to function: a case of the man sitting on a branch and sawing happily away between himself and the trunk.

        Unfortunately, this might also be a problem with the attempts to extend over-the-air TV using something like TV towers, so one has to be very carefully chosing which frequencies would be used for such transmissions.

        Starting with over-the-air wide-band cell phone transmissions:

        The frequencies assigned in at least one case to a company called by different names over the years, as it has been in and out pf bankruptcy, and now going by “Ligado” and owned by someone that also owns a hedge fund and that will not be deterred by anything as meh! as reason when he feels he really wants to do something, has been pushing, and got just this close thanks to Ajit Pai’s FCC of very dark memory, to realizing his plan to cover the continental USA from coast to coast and from its Mexico to Canada’s borders, with cellphone towers that will be transmitting at right above the higher frequency of the much weaker GPS signals:

        https://www.c4isrnet.com/battlefield-tech/2020/05/06/the-pentagon-had-made-its-case-against-ligado-what-comes-next-isnt-clear/

        While the “official” band of his proposed network signals ends right on the upper edge of the main GPS band, any radio transmission has, because of inevitable non-linearity in the transmitter, upper and sub harmonics, the later estimated to fall, not just smack in the GPS band, but with much greater power even with a realistically realizable preventive filtering. This interference is bound to disrupt many uses of GPS (and also of the other three GPS-like systems from the EU, Russia and China, the EU’s “GALILEO” being the biggest concern, as it is already used here and presents no international policy issues) over much of the USA. And it is more than cell phones, it is also the electrical grid, where the power coming in from different stations has to be synchronized precisely in frequency, or else: zap! crash! blackout!, and here the ultra-precise atomic clocks that drive the signals of GPS come decisively in to play. And so much more, from land surveying to precise real-time positioning of satellites and airplanes carrying sensors that are used for scientific and engineering applications that depend on their positions being known very precisely, and they are, thanks to GPS. Not to mention the Department of Defense complaints, joined repeatedly in its dire warnings by the Department of Transportation, NASA and a group of makers of GPS receivers and scientists and engineers that depend on clean GPS data for their work, some of fundamental nature, such as establishing and maintaining the International Terrestrial and Celestial systems of coordinates used in all things where position is needed to be defined very precisely (and also happens to be the sort of thing I have worked on for close to thirty years).

        Now there is also Leon Musk’s deployment of its Starlink constellation of, eventually, thousands of satellites at altitudes of around 500 km, to disseminate the Internet signals the world over.

        A noble idea, indeed. Just two problems with this:

        https://www.cnet.com/home/internet/starlink-satellite-internet-explained/

        (I) No one has ever managed anything remotely like this in the unforgiving environment of outer space. And this means that there will be inevitable clashes of some of these satellites with orbiting space rubbish and perhaps also with other satellites, either way with the potential to increase exponentially the present cloud of destructive bits and pieces hurtling along chaotic orbits at more than twenty times the speed of sound. (“Gravity” anyone?);

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kessler_syndrome

        (2) The satellites reflect the sunlight right into the lenses and mirrors of the powerful optical telescopes, down here on Earth, being used to explore the universe from red to ultraviolet frequencies and this has raised, understandingly, the alarm among astronomers. Compromises have been reached and future satellites will have some ways of minimizing the reflections. But these compromises are definitely not perfect, so they come at a cost to the other party, and that other party, ultimately, is our knowledge of the universe:

        https://www.cnet.com/news/spacex-starlink-satellites-have-astronomers-amplifying-cosmic-alarm/

        It would be possible to put these satellites in much higher orbits, where much fewer wold be needed to service the whole world and the risks of collision would be much less, high above most satellites and the orbiting junk. But that will introduce several hundreds of a second delay, and we cannot have that.

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

        MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
        Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
        Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

        • #2389880
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          My apologies for several typos: “Leon Musk” indeed!

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2389934
        wavy
        AskWoody Plus

        Ajit Pai’s

        Good works just keep going on. Another Trum Pet who’s dark works will affect us for a generation.

        🍻

        Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2390011
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          Last week, I think it was, I read in the Washington Post (paywalled to those not subscribing, so can’t put a generally useful link here, sorry) that a compromise in Congress has been agreed on a law or regulation that says that Ligado can go ahead and use its allocated frequencies for whatever, but if this causes problems to others because it screws up the useful use of their GPS receivers, then Ligado has to pay compensation to those afflicted as a result of that.

          A Salomonic judgement, I would think, except it is not yet clear if it merely threatens to split the baby in two, or has actually split the baby in two already. Time will tell, perhaps the hard way.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2390002
        wavy
        AskWoody Plus

        I just checked to see if I could get NBC to stream on my PC. I right away asked for what TV provider I used. What is the benefit of a live stream if I can just turn on my TV and use my local TV service? And re the use of OTA antennas, the range doesn’t get me a usable signal (unlike in the analog days). Locast could have provided audience numbers for tv shows and the networks could have gotten compensation from their advertisers just like they do for tv watched via cable. I think they were aware of legal issues that might have ensued with the cable companies who are made to pay for the privilege.

        I do get an add for sling on the NBC site but of course that is another paid service.

        🍻

        Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
      • #2390006
        JohnW
        AskWoody Plus

        I just checked to see if I could get NBC to stream on my PC. I right away asked for what TV provider I used. What is the benefit of a live stream if I can just turn on my TV and use my local TV service?

        I’m not running into that issue here. The TV provider link is required for unlimited NBC access, but you can still watch the live stream, or select full episodes or clips without supplying a provider.

        • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by JohnW.
        • #2390075
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          What I’ve been told by the stations in my local area is that I can live stream their newscasts but not any other content.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2390296
          wavy
          AskWoody Plus

          I’m not running into that issue here. The TV provider link is required for unlimited NBC access, but you can still watch the live stream, or select full episodes or clips without supplying a provider.

          Maybe I will need to try on a different PC that is not known to the network.

          🍻

          Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
      • #2390008
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        Wavy: “I just checked to see if I could get NBC to stream on my PC. I right away asked for what TV provider I used. What is the benefit of a live stream if I can just turn on my TV and use my local TV service? And re the use of OTA antennas, the range doesn’t get me a usable signal (unlike in the analog days).

        Riddle me this: Either you are within the normal range of local TV stations and can manage with just a simple rabbit-ears antenna on the TV set, or you are not and then those re-transmitting antennas already discussed here could get the signal to you, and yes they could be used for that, at least with digital TV signals and digital-capable TV receivers, but perhaps not if one still has one from the 1980s or even earlier; in which case, if the demand were big enough to have them, then there would be enterprising people making and selling settop boxes one could buy for those older TV sets. And even some of those in need of such boxes could make their own, if kits for that were also available, for example.  Another thing: the way I read your comment, you seem to be saying there that you are close enough, but not close enough to a local TV station. I am sure this is not what you meant to say in the passage I quote above, so some clarification would be appreciated.

        I agree that Locast should have provided the numbers of people subscribing to it to the stations/networks, so these could charge, according to the real total number of potential listeners, for carrying their ads. Does anyone else here knows why Locast did not do that? This has not come into this conversation until Wavy just mentioned it.

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

        MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
        Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
        Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

        • #2390076
          MHCLV941
          AskWoody Plus

          I recall from my childhood that one could get good reception quite a distance from the transmitter with an antenna on the root (frequently attached to the chimney).  This was back in the analog days, literally before cable tv in any form had been invented.

          I don’t have any first-hand experience with digital antennas for my research found that there are actually a number of classes of digital antennas that have different reception capabilities.  Close-in ones are pretty inexpensive and can be put on a wall or window.  The longer-range ones cost more (surprise!), have to be mounted outside and have additional installation requirements.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2390322
          wavy
          AskWoody Plus

          And re the use of OTA antennas, the range doesn’t get me a usable signal (unlike in the analog days)

          Wavy: “I just checked to see if I could get NBC to stream on my PC. I right away asked for what TV provider I used. What is the benefit of a live stream if I can just turn on my TV and use my local TV service? And re the use of OTA antennas, the range doesn’t get me a usable signal (unlike in the analog days).

          Riddle me this: Either you are within the normal range of local TV stations and can manage with just a simple rabbit-ears antenna on the TV set, or you are not and then those re-transmitting antennas already discussed here could get the signal to you, and yes they could be used for that, at least with digital TV signals and digital-capable TV receivers, but perhaps not if one still has one from the 1980s or even earlier; in which case, if the demand were big enough to have them, then there would be enterprising people making and selling settop boxes one could buy for those older TV sets. And even some of those in need of such boxes could make their own, if kits for that were also available, for example.  Another thing: the way I read your comment, you seem to be saying there that you are close enough, but not close enough to a local TV station. I am sure this is not what you meant to say in the passage I quote above, so some clarification would be appreciated.

          I agree that Locast should have provided the numbers of people subscribing to it to the stations/networks, so these could charge, according to the real total number of potential listeners, for carrying their ads. Does anyone else here knows why Locast did not do that? This has not come into this conversation until Wavy just mentioned it.

          that would be exactly what I meant

          And what did the stations do before smart TVs were around?

          the cable boxes are way smart enough, too smart IMHO.

          How does one saves money buying bundles from several companies?

          I had the cable vision TV ISP phone bundle for years w/o use of the phone part and it was cheaper than the separate prices. Now I am FI OS and saving $70 a month.

          🍻

          Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
      • #2390073
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Last week, I think it was, I read in the Washington Post (paywalled to those not subscribing, so can’t put a generally useful link here, sorry) that a compromise in Congress has been agreed on a law or regulation that says that Ligado can go ahead and use its allocated frequencies for whatever, but if this causes problems to others because it screws up the useful use of their GPS receivers, then Ligado has to pay compensation to those afflicted as a result of that. A Salomonic judgement, I would think, except it is not yet clear if it merely threatens to split the baby in two, or has actually split the baby in two already. Time will tell, perhaps the hard way.

        No, actually it’s a stupid one, about par for the course for Congress these days.  Such problems can cause an airplane to crash, a ship to run aground or a car’s navigation system (especially in the self-driving ones) to not know where it is and crash.

        It would be interesting to see how such a claim for compensation would work and how much an A380 or 787 full of people is worth.

        • #2390331
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          MHCLV941: ” It would be interesting to see how such a claim for compensation would work and how much an A380 or 787 full of people is worth.

          So you think the baby has been split already. Well, I am for waiting and seeing, because (a) this brilliant idea might not get passed into law and then not vetoed when it gets to Biden, or (b) it might become law and then deter Ligado’s owner (and investors) from going ahead with their plan and, instead, with the gentleman in question deciding to go back to managing his hedge fund full-time.

          Otherwise, yes, it will get interesting:

          Let’s say that Ligado’s signal undertones derail the use of GPS to synchronize the frequency of the power utilities’ juice going into the grid, and a blackout ensues, big enough to put Texas’ last winter one to shame. Then many parties sue to collect damages, get paid, and Ligado continues as usual, interfering with GPS; then, after the next blackout, car crash, or an IoT crash somehow causes the smart locks of the house to prevent those living there from running away when a fire starts inside the living, another set of law suites ensues, another payment for damages … A recurring catastrophe story ready-made for a movie, for real.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2390074
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        I agree that Locast should have provided the numbers of people subscribing to it to the stations/networks, so these could charge, according to the real total number of potential listeners, for carrying their ads. Does anyone else here knows why Locast did not do that? This has not come into this conversation until Wavy just mentioned it.

        Why should it have to?   TV stations somehow figure out how many people are watching what it broadcasts, i.e., no cable or service involved, so they should be able to do the same with anyone watching on Locast.   At most Locast should provide information on where it has customers for the station so they can adjust their ouija boards accordingly.

        • #2390139
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          “TV stations somehow figure out how many people are watching what it broadcasts”

          I suppose this must be true, but I have trouble following this, because I wonder how “somehow” works. Maybe those smart TV sets babble to them who is watching, or send reports to a server where they are tallied and the respective tallies sent to the stations? But if this is so, how about counting all those who still watch in old-school idiot boxes? And what did the stations do before smart TVs were around?

          By the way, back to my own comment, I have been considering the possibility that Locast did not tell anything to the TV stations about how many subscribers they had because they were concerned about what the stations would do when they learned that from them. As the stations, or their networks, did later on when they found out in other ways.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2390089
        JohnW
        AskWoody Plus

        I don’t have any first-hand experience with digital antennas for my research found that there are actually a number of classes of digital antennas that have different reception capabilities. Close-in ones are pretty inexpensive and can be put on a wall or window. The longer-range ones cost more (surprise!), have to be mounted outside and have additional installation requirements.

        I have used antennas for digital HDTV for 16 years. The antenna itself is still an analog RF antenna (UHF/VHF, so you can still use those antique rabbit ears), but the digital TV signal is transmitted digitally (ATSC with 8VSB modulation here in the US https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ATSC_standards) over a traditional RF radio frequency carrier.

        So the same old RF reception rules still apply here, as in the old analog TV days. The higher the antenna, the better reception from the rooftop, etc.

        The big difference is the capability of the DTV receiver to lock onto the DTV signal. With weaker signals, instead of snow like in the old days, you just get no picture, or a blocky, pixelated, unusable mess.

        With a small indoor antenna, you might pick up a couple of your closest stations, if the transmission towers are within a 10-20 mile radius, or less. YMMV. I had to experiment with a lot of indoor antennas to get to a satisfactory result with my indoor setup. Stations at 30 miles are very iffy, and frequent adjustments with a directional antenna are necessary to get them.

        Enter your zip here to see the local stations and their distance in your area: https://www.antennaweb.org

         

        • This reply was modified 1 week, 5 days ago by JohnW.
        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2390105
        Cybertooth
        AskWoody Plus

        But even while Verizon would agree to a telephone-and-internet-only deal, after much harrumphing about it, it turns out that a TV-cutting deal would cost me more than keeping the TV service, something I am doing now even if now very rarely watch TV.

        Some years ago, I was shocked at the price increases for our cable TV service from Comcast, so I called them and asked for ways to pare down the cost. The customer service rep suggested that we purchase a “triple play bundle” of TV, Internet, and telephone.

        I replied that we were happy with our phone and Internet service from Verizon and were interested mainly in cutting down the cost of cable TV. And besides, what would we do with the Comcast router?

        “You don’t have to plug in the router,” said the rep. “You can put it away and just hook up the cable TV. Then keep getting your phone and Internet from Verizon. You’ll be getting what you’re looking for and end up paying less.”

        They’d rather sell you a bundle of services than individual services. But buying bundles from different companies and then using just the services you want from each may be a way to turn their predilection for bundles into a cost savings for us.

         

        • #2390134
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          Cybertooth, you write: “But buying bundles from different companies and then using just the services you want from each may be a way to turn their predilection for bundles into a cost savings for us.

          How does one saves money buying bundles from several companies? Not using part of their bundle seems to be what the rep. was telling you to do, which is fine if you prefer not to use it, being a free agent. But don’t you still have to pay all the same for their whole bundle, so the price stays the same? I don’t watch TV and still have to pay for it as part of my bundle. The price does not change whether I watch or not. Is yours some kind of metered service where you pay for actual minutes or GB used?

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2390135
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Cybertooth, how does one saves money buying bundles from several companies? Not using part of their bundle seems to be what the rep. was telling you to do, which is fine if you prefer not to use it, being a free agent. But don’t you still have to pay all the same for their whole bundle, so the price stays the same? I don’t watch TV and still have to pay for it as part of my bundle. The price does not change whether I watch or not. Is yours some kind of metered service where you  pay for actual minutes or GB used?

        Bundles have no apparent sense, but I have had the exact same outcome with Cox Cable.  When I called to see about lowering my cable bill (one has to get to customer retention before the good deals come out), I found I could lower my bill by adding a sports channel package.  Similarly, I was told my bill would go up if I dropped telephone service.

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        • #2390141
          PKCano
          Manager

          Did you check to see if your “deal” was for a limited time (6 months, 3months?) and then it would go to the standard fee (after you got used to the reduced rate and stopped looking)?

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      • #2390138
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        “You don’t have to plug in the router,” said the rep. “You can put it away and just hook up the cable TV. Then keep getting your phone and Internet from Verizon. You’ll be getting what you’re looking for and end up paying less.” They’d rather sell you a bundle of services than individual services

        I had the same sort of experience with telephone service from Cox Cable.  Keeping it was cheaper than dropping it.

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      • #2390140
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        I suppose this must be true, but I have trouble following this, because I wonder how “somehow” works. Maybe those smart TV sets babble to them who is watching, or send reports to a server where they are tallied and the respective tallies sent to the stations? But if this is so, how about counting all those who still watch in old-school idiot boxes? And what did the stations do before smart TVs were around?

        Keep in mind we are talking about people watching tv stations’ broadcasts directly (normally using an antenna), not through any intermediary like cable, Dish or a streaming service.   This means even the smartest TV is not telling the tv station a thing, just like 50 or 60 years ago, before any of these intermediaries exists (or were even technologically possible).

        There are companies, Nielsen may be the best known/largest, which ask people what they watch.  Nielsen literally pays people to keep a log of what shows they watch and return the logs to Neilsen.   It also has ways of collecting data when intermediary services are involved, but if you watch TV using an antenna and you don’t tell anyone what you watch, no one knows but you.

        • #2390312
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          I know about Nielsen and its ratings of individual programs, something that goes beyond who is watching which station.

          But does Nielsen also ask people living in farms and small villages?

          And, by the way, living in the suburbs of the Washington DC Metropolitan Area, after many years of watching TV, and now not watching it anymore, but still connected to “cable” in the form of Verizon’s TV-over-fiber, I have never been called by Nielsen asking me what I am watching right then or what I watch most often, or which stations do I watch, etc.

          Has anyone here?

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

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          • #2390323
            wavy
            AskWoody Plus

            But does Nielsen also ask people living in farms and small villages?

            The Portable People Meter (PPM), also known as Nielsen Meter, is a system developed by Arbitron (now Nielsen Audio) to measure how many people are exposed or listening to individual radio stations and television stations, including cable television. The PPM is worn like a pager, and detects hidden audio tones within a station or network’s audio stream, logging each time it finds such a signal.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portable_People_Meter

            But does Nielsen also ask people living in farms and small villages?

            🍻

            Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
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      • #2390143
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Did you check to see if your “deal” was for a limited time (6 months, 3months?) and then it would go to the standard fee (after you got used to the reduced rate and stopped looking)?

        Yes, I did check and no, these bundles are not time-limited.  I also have some discounts that are time-limited and reminders on my calendar to have another chat with the retention department before they do.

      • #2390147
        Cybertooth
        AskWoody Plus

        How does one saves money buying bundles from several companies? Not using part of their bundle seems to be what the rep. was telling you to do, which is fine if you prefer not to use it, being a free agent. But don’t you still have to pay all the same for their whole bundle, so the price stays the same? I don’t watch TV and still have to pay for it as part of my bundle. The price does not change whether I watch or not. Is yours some kind of metered service where you pay for actual minutes or GB used?

        No, no metered service.

        The price of the Comcast Triple Play bundle was less than the price of Comcast cable alone. The rep’s suggestion was to buy the bundle and then make use of only the TV portion. The effect was to get the same stuff we were getting, but at a lower price.

        In addition, we looked into buying a Verizon TV/phone/Internet bundle to then make use of only the phone and Internet portions. But we already had a “double play” bundle (phone + Internet) from them, and that was good enough.

         

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        • #2390160
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          As Verizon does it, definitely a bundle with more is cheaper than a smaller one with less, but it is far from cheap even so. In fact, because changing to less will cost me more, is why I am keeping the bundle even when I do not watch the TV that comes with it. I have read here and there that if one gets tough with Verizon and tells the representative answering your complaint call this, or that, or the other, Verizon will cave in and give you what you want. Well, maybe, who knows. I’d rather keep on paying the protection money so I can go about my business without having to worry about any dire consequences.

          On the other hand, over-the-air TV is still free and available, and as I live close enough to the local stations, I could watch it, if I were still watching TV. I’d rather stream TV with my computer, that does a more convenient and better job of showing a program than my old cathode-ray tube TV, although that is the one that gets hundreds of programs through a Verizon set top box. Truth be told, I have never cared much for TV (it’s a family thing) and only used to watch very selectively what was in there, most of which I still can watch by streaming.

          But if I lived far from any TV stations and with a poor internet service, then watching TV through a re-broadcaster, like Locast was, would be more of a necessity, as it would be the main way to get the news, if nothing else (AM radio might or might not have good enough reception far from a radio station, for the same reason that over-the-air TV does not).

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      • #2390324
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        But does Nielsen also ask people living in farms and small villages?

        Why would it not? People living in “farms and small villages” actually have electricity, running water and most importantly in this context. money.

        I have never been called by Nielsen asking me what I am watching right then or what I watch most often, or which stations do I watch, etc.

        Has anyone here?

        As fas I as I know, they don’t call anyone, most certainly not anyone who has not already agreed to talk to them.

        • #2390328
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          MHCLV941:

          (1) “Why would it not? …  “: That could be a justification for going out and sampling farms and small villages, not a confirmation that Nielsen actually does that, everywhere, enough of the time. Or at all.

          (2) “As far as I know … certainly not anyone that has not already agreed to talk to them.

          First of all, I asked if someone here has actually had a call from Nielsen, starting with one to ask if they want to participate — or if they got any call at all.

          Second of all: I am still waiting for an answer to that.

           

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

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          • #2390340
            MHCLV941
            AskWoody Plus

            NO. Feel better now? I have had mail solicitations from Neilson, but never a cold call.

      • #2390325
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        And re the use of OTA antennas, the range doesn’t get me a usable signal (unlike in the analog days)

        Wavy: “I just checked to see if I could get NBC to stream on my PC. I right away asked for what TV provider I used. What is the benefit of a live stream if I can just turn on my TV and use my local TV service? And re the use of OTA antennas, the range doesn’t get me a usable signal (unlike in the analog days).

        Riddle me this: Either you are within the normal range of local TV stations and can manage with just a simple rabbit-ears antenna on the TV set, or you are not and then those re-transmitting antennas already discussed here could get the signal to you, and yes they could be used for that, at least with digital TV signals and digital-capable TV receivers, but perhaps not if one still has one from the 1980s or even earlier; in which case, if the demand were big enough to have them, then there would be enterprising people making and selling settop boxes one could buy for those older TV sets. And even some of those in need of such boxes could make their own, if kits for that were also available, for example.  Another thing: the way I read your comment, you seem to be saying there that you are close enough, but not close enough to a local TV station. I am sure this is not what you meant to say in the passage I quote above, so some clarification would be appreciated.

        I agree that Locast should have provided the numbers of people subscribing to it to the stations/networks, so these could charge, according to the real total number of potential listeners, for carrying their ads. Does anyone else here knows why Locast did not do that? This has not come into this conversation until Wavy just mentioned it.

        that would be exactly what I meant

        And what did the stations do before smart TVs were around?

        the cable boxes are way smart enough, too smart IMHO.

        How does one saves money buying bundles from several companies?

        I had the cable vision TV ISP phone bundle for years w/o use of the phone part and it was cheaper than the separate prices. Now I am FI OS and saving $70 a month.

        Children, children. TV stations had ratings long before cable, streaming or any other technology but a TV sitting on a table connected to an antenna, either indoors or outdoors, depending on how far away one lived from the transmitter towers.

      • #2390327
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        But does Nielsen also ask people living in farms and small villages?

        The Portable People Meter (PPM), also known as Nielsen Meter, is a system developed by Arbitron (now Nielsen Audio) to measure how many people are exposed or listening to individual radio stations and television stations, including cable television. The PPM is worn like a pager, and detects hidden audio tones within a station or network’s audio stream, logging each time it finds such a signal.

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Portable_People_Meter

        But does Nielsen also ask people living in farms and small villages?

        And before that, it was a paper logbook. Literally.

        TV has been deployed since the 1950s (I recall being bored with the 1952 presidential conventions, carried on all THREE stations so it was unavoidable!); decades before cable, the internet, streaming, satellites or any of the other technologies that participants in this discussion clearly have no memory of never having had.

        • #2390330
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          To clarify how the People Meter works: it is kept in the house of the people who have agreed to be in the “Nielsen Panels”, that are made of those who keep a diary of what they are watching and then calling in, or mailing their watching logs to Nielsen. With the People Meter, that is kept at home, the gadget identifies the station and time when the TV is receiving from it by means of inaudible tones that are uniquely characteristic of a given station embedded in the station programs’ audio. The gadget may also be set up to call Nielsen by phone and send it the viewing information that has collected, so there is no problem with people not keeping a proper log of their watching, or forgetting to send it in etc. A new model being tried is small enough for a person to wear on:

          The new PPM Wearable can also be worn in a variety of ways, including wristbands, clips and pendants, …

          https://www.tvtechnology.com/news/nielsen-to-deploy-new-wearable-people-meters

          None of this answers my question on whether Nielsen is actually tracking the viewing of enough of those living far away from the TV stations, out in the middle of the countryside. Otherwise, a company like Locast would have to tell the stations how many of their subscribers have been watching what and when. One must keep it mind that what happened to Locast when the stations, or more to the point, their networks, found out it was re-broadcasting their programs for free, was not very good for Locast. Or its subscribers. Or, long-term, not too good for the stations themselves, or for its networks. The compensation the station/networks got paid was one-time only; the ability of getting the information on folks out there, beyond their radar, was not there anymore and they had to pony up and build their own capability, or coax Nielsen to expand its own.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

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        • #2390334
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          … decades before cable, the internet, streaming, satellites or any of the other technologies that participants in this discussion clearly have no memory of never having had.

          Well, I have no memory of something that never happened to me with Nielsen, regardless of technology. And about remembering not having technologies at my disposal, or choosing not to use them: I am pretty sure that Telex was one I never used, but I do remember using courier pigeons! And of not using semaphores, nor naval signaling flags! And also of not using fires at a series of mutual line-of-sight signalling posts on top of hills, or jungle drums, or smoke signals, or clay tablets. So: there!

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
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      • #2390333
        Cybertooth
        AskWoody Plus

        None of this answers my question on whether Nielsen is actually tracking the viewing of enough of those living far away from the TV stations, out in the middle of the countryside.

        The following might help (emphasis added):

        The Nielsen ratings system determines ratings by monitoring the television viewing habits of thousands of households in the United States and more in other countries. These households are selected on the basis of the degree to which they represent all television-viewing households. The Nielsen organization studied the overall population of television-viewing households and determined what characteristics make them different from non-viewing households. Then the organization selects households distributed among geographical locations in urban and rural areas so that the proportions in each area match census data as closely as possible.

        (Source: https://www.infobloom.com/how-are-households-selected-to-be-a-part-of-the-nielsen-ratings-system.htm)

         

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      • #2390335
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        None of this answers my question on whether Nielsen is actually tracking the viewing of enough of those living far away from the TV stations, out in the middle of the countryside.

        The following might help (emphasis added):

        The Nielsen ratings system determines ratings by monitoring the television viewing habits of thousands of households in the United States and more in other countries. These households are selected on the basis of the degree to which they represent all television-viewing households. The Nielsen organization studied the overall population of television-viewing households and determined what characteristics make them different from non-viewing households. Then the organization selects households distributed among geographical locations in urban and rural areas so that the proportions in each area match census data as closely as possible.

        (Source: https://www.infobloom.com/how-are-households-selected-to-be-a-part-of-the-nielsen-ratings-system.htm)

         

        Seems to me you’ve answered your own question. I’m reasonably sure Neilson is aware that there are people living outside the city limits and proceeds accordingly.

        • #2390358
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          I did not answer my own question: actually, after copying my comment (first short paragraph), Cybertooth copied the second, long one, from elsewhere, by way of explaining to me what I was wondering about. Check it out. Thank you, Cybertooth.

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      • #2390337
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Well, I have no memory of something that never happened to me with Nielsen, regardless of technology. And about remembering not having technologies at my disposal, or choosing not to use them: I am pretty sure that Telex was one I never used, but I do remember using courier pigeons! And of not using semaphores, nor naval signaling flags! And also of not using fires at a series of mutual line-of-sight signalling posts on top of hills, or jungle drums, or smoke signals, or clay tablets. So: there!

        You should re-read your own posts because you clearly don’t imagine a world with television but without the internet, cable, satellites and so forth.

        • #2390342
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          Well, yes, I do imagine such a world just fine, as that is exactly the world I was born into and spent my earliest years in. And a world without television, to boot. Or computers. Or electrical washing machines. Or with ice blocks in lieu of fridges. A world where teletype, telegraph (including the intercontinental one, with submarine cables), telephone (with operators handling manual switchboards), radio, the windup phonograph and the movies (in the pre-widescreen format) were the highest tech. All of which, I suppose, says something about my age.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
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      • #2390339
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        So you think the baby has been split already. Well, I am for waiting and seeing, because (a) this brilliant idea might not get passed into law and then not vetoed when it gets to Biden, or (b) it might become law and then deter Ligado’s owner (and investors) from going ahead with their plan and, instead, with the gentleman in question deciding to go back to managing his hedge fund full-time

        Contrary to you, I think this is the stupidest thing Congress has done (might do) in a long, long time. And that is a very high bar. I also think the FCC selling that bit of spectrum in the first place over the objections of every agency that has an opinion, none of which are competitors with this guy, is one of the stupidest things to come out of the FCC since they canceled net neutrality.

        I do know a little bit about spectrum management and this is frighenting.

        • #2390341
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          MHCLV941 write: “Contrary to you, I think this is the stupidest thing Congress has done (might do) in a long, long time.

          Contrary to me? No, I think it is stupid all right. That was what I meant with that Judgement of Salomon analogy (with a little question mark as to its final implementation). It is just that sometimes stupid ideas work for the better in unexpected, indirect ways, and clever ones, for worse in unexpected ways too. In other words: guessing from presently known facts to what might happen later, is complicated.

          Not that I hold much hope as to what is likely to happen now. It would seem to me, in my less optimistic days, that mankind progresses by learning how to do right, through catastrophes, what it could have figured out without much trouble, by thinking.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

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        • #2390360
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          Usually unnecessary clarification: “brilliant idea.”

          I was using irony; but I am old school, so do not use emojis to slam the point home.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
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          • #2390433
            wavy
            AskWoody Plus

            😁😏😣😴😬🍜🍾🍻
            This gonna get dumped but u might get my point b4 it does
            🤨

            🍻

            Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
      • #2390430
        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        First of all, I am sorry that I have asked an unexpectedly disruptive question that has only momentarily, I hope, derailed an interesting and also, in my opinion, important discussion on Livingston’s article.

        But since the question has not yet been answered, while, also in my opinion, it is pretty close to the heart of the matter that, as I understand it, is the topic of this thread: how the broadcasters of over-the-air TV reacted when they learned that someone was running a service that streamed over the Internet their transmissions without telling them about it (which would have been good form). Prompting with their exaggerated reaction, driven by no more than garden-variety greed, it would seem, the court proceedings settled by a judge in a remarkably unsatisfactory way with a potentially (and troubling) precedent-setting decision (if the TV networks and other media giants may have anything to say about it, at a later date).

        So let me spell out my question in further, and I hope sufficient, detail:

        Does anyone here who lives, or has lived, far from over-the-air TV stations, but receiving the signals OK, maybe with large dish antennas, subscribing to Locast, of by other means, been provided by Nielsen of a People Meter or is keeping and regularly submitting a log to Nielsen of what he’s been watching,? Or has a friend, relative, or acquaintance who has? Or can anyone here provide an URL link to a journalistic report from a credible Web site dedicated to media issues, where a reporter through interviews, or by direct personal observation, or having access to relevant information (perhaps from peeking into some papers, now under seal), produced during discovery at a trial where Nielsen was being charged of failing to properly inform their customers of the number of people watching their shows — hypothetically speaking, of course), and is such a report, at such a Web site, written about what has been consequently found out, clearly and in plain language, about what Nielsen actually, and not just saying so, does, or does not do, to monitor what people watch in distant locations from over-the-air broadcasters?

        So framed, and I hope understood, this might well be a question no one here (or even anywhere) is in a position to answer, as nobody might have such kind of evidence at hand; but even if unanswerable right here and now, it is a question that I think is at least worth asking. Because the right now unanswerable questions are, sometimes, the important ones (e.g., is there life elsewhere in the Cosmos?). If nothing else, they prompt us to think harder on things that matter. There, I wrote it. And this is my very last comment on this unexpectedly trouble-making question. I’ll continue to comment on the topic of this thread, of course, when I have anything to write that I believe to be relevant enough to let you all know about it.

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

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        • #2390438
          wavy
          AskWoody Plus

          So what was the question???

          🍻

          Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
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          • #2390440
            OscarCP
            AskWoody Plus

            Well, Wavy, that is why this happens to you: you reply before I finish editing my comment. Which I usually take quite a while doing. You should really don’t do that. (Imaginary smiley here).

            Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

            MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
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            • #2390613
              wavy
              AskWoody Plus

              I try to keep ahead of things 😎

              🍻

              Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
              • #2390643
                OscarCP
                AskWoody Plus

                Wavy, well, now you know what it is like with me, so take it easy.

                For the record: in my comments I normally only edit minor things that, I think, would make them ready to be read, but do not change the meaning, such as typos, incorrect use of some word, bad grammar. If I change anything significant — something I very rarely do, as the text comes out of my head fully developed, as Pallas-Athena (a.k.a “Minerva”) was famed to have come out off (a.k.a “Jupiter”) Zeus’ head — I do make a note there, in the comment itself, and also mark it as “commented”, so people know.

                Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

                MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
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      • #2390441
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Usually unnecessary clarification: “brilliant idea.”

        I was using irony; but I am old school, so do not use emojis to slam the point home.

        This is your first use of the phrase brilliant idea.

        So you think the baby has been split already. Well, I am for waiting and seeing, because (a) this brilliant idea might not get passed into law and then not vetoed when it gets to Biden, or (b) it might become law and then deter Ligado’s owner (and investors) from going ahead with their plan and, instead, with the gentleman in question deciding to go back to managing his hedge fund full-time.

        There are no emojis or any other indication that you were, as you claim, being sarcastic.

        • #2390442
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          I wished people read my relevant comments before criticizing. First, see here, then, cry: #2390331

          I also have explained already in my last comment last night, that I never use emojis; for further clarification: assuming that people are smart enough to distinguish irony from a straight statement, when given in a fairly clear context, as it was the case there, even to one that merely scanned the whole comment first.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
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      • #2390443
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        I wished people read my relevant comments before criticizing. First, see here, then, cry: #2390331

        I already x that I never use emojis, assuming that people are smart enough to distinguish irony from a straight statement, when given in a fairly clear context, as it was the case there, even assuming one just scanned the whole comment first.

        First, where do think I got the text I quoted?

        Second, there is nothing ironic about what you wrote. You may have meant it that way, but that is not the way it reads. Perhaps the assumption about “smart enough” reflects on the writer’s failure to coherently convey his/her/its intent.

        • #2390445
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          No further answers or comments on this type of annoying personal inquisition.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2390446
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        Well, Wavy, that is why this happens to you: you reply before I finish editing my comment. Which I usually take quite a while doing. You should really don’t do that. (Imaginary smiley here).

        FYI: This site sends notice of a new post as soon as the post is submitted the first time and includes the text of that post. It does not send follow-on notices if/when a post had been updated nor is there any indication on the site itself that a post one is reading may also be being edited.

        I have gotten bit both ways (updating a post and responding to one) for just these reasons.

        2 users thanked author for this post.
        • #2390447
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          I know. Not my problem.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2390448
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        No further answers or comments on this type of annoying personal inquisition.

        Excellent! We now know you can dish it out but cannot take it.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2390449
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        OscarCP wrote:
        Well, Wavy, that is why this happens to you: you reply before I finish editing my comment. Which I usually take quite a while doing. You should really don’t do that. (Imaginary smiley here).

        I know. Not my problem.

        Right, it’s clearly Wavy’s problem.

        • #2390451
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          Please, see answer here: #2390445

           

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

      • #2390572
        Cybertooth
        AskWoody Plus

        So let me spell out my question in further, and I hope sufficient, detail: Does anyone here who lives, or has lived, far from over-the-air TV stations, but receiving the signals OK, maybe with large dish antennas, subscribing to Locast, of by other means, been provided by Nielsen of a People Meter or is keeping and regularly submitting a log to Nielsen of what he’s been watching,? Or has a friend, relative, or acquaintance who has? Or can anyone here provide an URL link to a journalistic report from a credible Web site dedicated to media issues, where a reporter through interviews, or by direct personal observation, or having access to relevant information (perhaps from peeking into some papers, now under seal), produced during discovery at a trial where Nielsen was being charged of failing to properly inform their customers of the number of people watching their shows — hypothetically speaking, of course), and is such a report, at such a Web site, written about what has been consequently found out, clearly and in plain language, about what Nielsen actually, and not just saying so, does, or does not do, to monitor what people watch in distant locations from over-the-air broadcasters?



        @oscarcp
        , I happened upon your post more than seven hours after the post time, so presumably there is no question of further editing of it and what I have quoted above is the current, final version.

        Your question reads like a lawyer’s brief (or a EULA) and is desperately in need of simplification. Among other things, there is a hanging closing parenthesis and it is unclear where the parenthetical remark begins. Would you be so kind as to pose your question in ten words or less, please, so that readers who might still be inclined to try to help might figure out what you want to know?

         

        • #2390581
          OscarCP
          AskWoody Plus

          Cybertooth, It reads like an EULA as intended, because I wrote that to stop people from saying that they were answering my question, when, in fact, they were answering some other question, not mine.

          Now: ten words or less? Not a chance. I need to make my question so complete that there is no chance the people think they are answering it when they are not. But I’ll give it a go at cutting it down and simplifying it, without making it even harder to understand by cutting down and simplifying it too much. So here it goes:

          =0=0=0=0=0=

          Has anyone watching TV far from over-the-air stations been contacted by Nielsen and received from them one of those People Meters, so they can report on what are watching on TV, and do these people also know of others who have been given a People Meter and live also far from over-the-air stations? Or can someone provide an URL link to some article in a reputable publication, where a reporter has written about how effectively Nielsen tracks what people are watching far from the stations –and if at Nielsen they track that at all?

          0-0-0-0

          I added that maybe nobody can answer my question, because there is not enough information to give as an answer — but that is OK, because some questions that do not have a known answer, sometimes, are important enough to be worth keeping in mind (is there life elsewhere in the Cosmos? What is time? being two examples.)

          =0=0=0=0=0=0=0=

          Enjoy!

          And I going back to listening to Hilary playing Beethoven’s violin concerto Number his only one, that right now, surprisingly enough, is more interesting  to YT than the Nielsen ratings.

          Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

          MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
          Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
          Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

          • #2390670
            Cybertooth
            AskWoody Plus

            This page isn’t exactly what you ask for, but it is definitely from an authoritative source (the horse’s mouth, so to speak) and at least it will provide additional detail on Nielsen’s process for selecting the participants who go into constituting the TV ratings.

            Note particularly the sections titled, “How are participants selected?” and “How do we ensure accurate representation of ethnicities?

            In principle it shouldn’t be difficult to find descriptions from actual participants as to how the process works and addressing your specific concerns. Unless, of course, participants are asked to sign an NDA or something along those lines.

            The section, “How Nielsen families are selected” on this other page adds a bit more information about the selection process.

            And I going back to listening to Hilary playing Beethoven’s violin concerto Number his only one[…]

            OT, but this week I finished making my way through a collection of Mozart’s symphonies. Except for Nos. 40 and 41, it turned out to be an educational experience rather than an enjoyable one. His violin concerti give me a much greater return of delight per note.

             

            • #2390689
              OscarCP
              AskWoody Plus

              Cybertooth: OK, I looked in that Website when looking around for information on Nielsen, but it was not quite on point for an answer to my question, as you said. Probably good for adding some clarity to the question of how the Nielsen scoring works, or should, if they actually did as explained: that’s their plan, in theory —  whether they collect enough, or any, information in far off places for real, is something else.

              As a brief aside on a more pleasant issue, at least to me and, it would seem, also somewhat of interest to you, as you have actually listened to 39 of Mozart’s symphonies in one go, missing just the last two (three symphonies are dubiously all his and one is known to have been a total ripoff of another by his friend Haydn, except for the opening bars: “I was in a big hurry, so-very-sorry!”). Have you listened to the pianist Lili Kraus’ collection of all of the Mozart piano concerti (in three separate videos: his young, middle and last years’ works) and of all his piano sonatas, both available in YT? She was really good. (See? I was afraid to be taken for a snob, and have been writing “concertos” in the “Classic”, Part I and II threads, but now you have set me in the correct and proper path and really given me permission to write the Italian plural right: concerti. So: concerti!, concerti!!, concerti!!!)

              Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

              MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
              Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
              Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

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              • #2390697
                Cybertooth
                AskWoody Plus

                Yes, if/when I get the chance to, I’m thinking of doing a Web search for people who actually used the Nielsen meters. In theory at least, it sounds like a participant could be from Manhattan, New York or Manhattan, Kansas.

                One things that puzzles me a little is why a TV station would object to a service like Locast. Assuming that all that Locast does is a straight streaming of the whole broadcast, then that would appear to increase the total audience for the commercials shown on the station, thereby tending to increase the advertisers’ return on their investment. Over time, this would be bound to increase demand for those stations’ commercial time and thus to raise the rates they can charge for ads. Not sure why this is such a horrible prospect as to demand legal or regulatory action against a service like Locast.

                I apologize for not being clear enough in describing my Mozart symphony “project.” What I meant was that I did listen to every last one of them, but only #40 and #41 turned out to be enjoyable. Except for the odd movement here or there, I found most of the rest to be largely fluff and hardly memorable. A little disappointing, actually. I’d always wanted to do this and I’m glad that I did, but I doubt I’ll be slogging through that whole collection again.

                Thanks for the tip on Lili Kraus, I was not aware of her but will definitely check out her Mozart performances.

                 

              • #2390698
                OscarCP
                AskWoody Plus

                One things that puzzles me a little is why a TV station would object to a service like Locast.

                “Greed, blind greed” is the easy answer. But maybe not the whole story, perhaps just a part of it. Who knows? Be that as it may, the decision of the judge is an awful one that could very well have bad repercussions for a long time to come, if the big media companies try to make hay of this sort of thing at every opportunity to squish any incipient effort to distribute their product not exactly the way they like it. Being unable to even consider no being the uncontested and all-powerful rulers of the game might have something to do with it, as well, and not necessarily their carrying out some mysterious and clever ploy.

                By the way: “Elvira Madigan”, No. 21, is the second in the third, “late period” set of Mozart’s piano concerti. But Lili and the orchestra did a very good job with the whole lot. Just as with the symphonies, some of the works are more interesting than others.

                Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

                MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
                Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
                Waterfox "Current" and (now and then) Chrome. also Intego AV and Malwarebytes for the Mac.

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              • #2390702
                OscarCP
                AskWoody Plus

                And, on further reflection, this judge’s decision might conceivably be used, on grounds of some perverse legalistic arguments, as one of the various levers that big distributors of content, from big book publishers to streaming giants, to big movie studios and more, could use to shift the definition of “fair use” for their own benefit — and our own grief.

                Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

                MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
                Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
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                1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2390661
        wavy
        AskWoody Plus

        as the text comes out of my head fully developed,

        well lucky you 😜 I am mostly only somewhat coherent but i must say i do admire you very coherent posts, althooough theeey maaybee a bit annoying at times. But don’t go anywhere now. 😲
        I gather you know by now I really like emojis, the written language is not always up to the task in an ordinary writer.

        🍻

        Just because you don't know where you are going doesn't mean any road will get you there.
        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2390707
        MHCLV941
        AskWoody Plus

        One things that puzzles me a little is why a TV station would object to a service like Locast. Assuming that all that Locast does is a straight streaming of the whole broadcast, then that would appear to increase the total audience for the commercials shown on the station, thereby tending to increase the advertisers’ return on their investment. Over time, this would be bound to increase demand for those stations’ commercial time and thus to raise the rates they can charge for ads. Not sure why this is such a horrible prospect as to demand legal or regulatory action against a service like Locast.

        That’s the thing that totally stumps me for the same reason. So long as Locast (or its successors, if there are any) tells each station the areas it services, the station has exactly the same information basis for surveys as it does for its viewers watching OTA.

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