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Television service 
10th-Jul-2012 04:18 pm
snowflake 8 - by theidolhands
I was reading a blog post about the dispute between DirecTV and Viacom about the cost of carriage rights or something like that. It seems these disputes pop up every few months between one network and one or more cable or satellite companies. I noticed a lot of people in comments saying they don't subscribe to either cable or satellite anymore, and I know a few people on my flist who don't either. I was just curious what the people here might have to say about that. Please feel free to elaborate in comments about anything related or unrelated to this issue. ;)

Poll #1853050 Television

Do you have cable TV or a satellite service for television shows or do you rely on Netflix, Amazon Prime, or a la carte (Amazon, iTunes) or downloading to watch shows?

cable
31(29.0%)
satellite
12(11.2%)
Netflix and similar services for streaming
27(25.2%)
I download shows from the internet
18(16.8%)
I don't watch most TV shows
14(13.1%)
Something else
5(4.7%)

If you have cable TV or satellite TV, do you subscribe to any premium channels

Yes
16(32.0%)
No
27(54.0%)
I used to, but I don't anymore
4(8.0%)
Something else
3(6.0%)
Comments 
(Deleted comment)
10th-Jul-2012 10:58 pm (UTC)
Yeah. My husband likes U.S. football, so he subscribes to the football package from DirecTV. I was reading today that we could get that package on a Playstation without going through DirecTV. I hadn't heard of that before. I wonder if the soccer channel is available like that as well? Even so, we don't own a Playstation, but it's nice to see that there are options.
10th-Jul-2012 09:55 pm (UTC)
I don't know what the difference is between cable and satellite, but I just plug my TV into the wall and turn it on. There's nothing to pay for except electricity. (although I do also stream shows online via the network sites/Hulu for anything I miss)
10th-Jul-2012 10:51 pm (UTC)
I think it depends on where you live. In the U.S. cable means it comes from the cable company (who use satellites). Satellite means you have your own satellite dish on your house or attached to your building somehow. Back many years ago, people actually had giant satellite dishes in their yards, but now the dishes are relatively small and usually attached to the house or building.

If you just use over-the-air television, usually you'll have an antenna on your TV or a large antenna on the roof. It would mean you didn't get any of the cable channels, though.

This is how it works in the U.S. If you're not in the U.S., I'm not sure how it works.
10th-Jul-2012 11:39 pm (UTC)
Yep, that's me, the lifelong (U.S.) antenna holder (at this point I've whacked mine around so many times it's bent in all kinds of ways it probably shouldn't be...but it's working nicely for the moment). I really didn't know the difference between cable and satellite until this comment, though. Nicely explained.
12th-Jul-2012 04:24 pm (UTC)
Thank you. We mostly did not have cable TV until about 1998, but everyone we knew had it back in the 80s. Most of the places we lived didn't have it available and/or we couldn't afford it at the time. I remember the days of whacking the antenna around. When I was a kid, we often had metal coat hangers instead of an antenna. hehe You had to turn it one way or another way and still the picture would often be fuzzy.
(Deleted comment)
10th-Jul-2012 10:56 pm (UTC)
I think a lot of people do this. I don't think I would like to watch on the network sites, because they always make you watch ads which I don't like, but it does sound more convenient and less expensive than paying for a bunch of channels I never watch anyway.

Just a few years ago, I had one favorite show and it was the only show I watched. Then I got a DVR and it became so easy to set it to record shows, so I recorded a few, then more, now lots. I rarely watch random stuff on television, and I rarely watch anything live. I don't even know when shows are on most of the time. I just watch the recordings at my own convenience. I also use Netflix and Amazon Prime to catch up on older shows. I don't like watching on the network websites, because they force you to watch commercials.
(Deleted comment)
10th-Jul-2012 11:05 pm (UTC)
Sorry I said that twice. I meant to delete it one of the time when I realized I wrote it twice.

Yeah, I don't think it's a huge deal, but it's just one of those things that turns me off a bit, so I'd rather watch a recording where I can skip over the ads. But I was just thinking how having the convenience of the DVR has actually encouraged me to watch more and more TV, simply because it's there. *g* When I had to figure out when shows were on and actually pay attention, that was too much trouble, so I rarely did it. I like the idea of being unencumbered with all this stuff (both the shows and all the electronic stuff) even though I love all the gadgets. :)
10th-Jul-2012 11:49 pm (UTC)
If you live on an island with less than 300 people satellite is the only way. We have only 3 local channels. We watch maybe 3 hours of TV a night - catch the news and maybe something else - or not. Husband may catch a baseball game. Sometimes I wonder if it's worth it.
11th-Jul-2012 01:03 am (UTC)
As of last Friday I have DirecTV. It's mandatory / "included" in my new apartment's rent, so it'd be stupid not to have them hook it up since we're paying for it anyway. But it's so weird. I've always only had antenna TV. Why do people think they need this many channels?
11th-Jul-2012 01:28 am (UTC)
Thumbs up for this comment! It's pretty easy to find a use for all those channels if you want to (I had cable in my college dorm), but I definitely don't feel like I'm missing anything without it.
12th-Jul-2012 04:15 pm (UTC)
Nobody needs all those channels. Way back when cable TV first started, it was a requirement to have local access channels I guess to make sure the local community had access to media, and those were bundled into the basic package whether you wanted them or not. They still follow that model and all sorts of random channels are bundled into packages with the channels you actually want. But those "channels you actually want" are different for everyone, I suppose. Some people want all the kids channels, some like the science and history channels, some want the local channels, etc. It would be nice if you could just pay for the channels you want, but it doesn't work that way.
11th-Jul-2012 08:14 am (UTC)
I rarely watch any series these days. Most I watch is either documentaries on the Public channels(phoenix, 1+, arte..) or Sports. (which I also use the internet for , such as Eurosportplayer for example) I have got a sat dish but i don't have any subscriptions to premium channels or Pay -TV

Edited at 2012-07-11 08:16 am (UTC)
11th-Jul-2012 09:46 am (UTC)
i miss Cox. DirecTV fucking SUCKS!! i miss my DVR
12th-Jul-2012 04:17 pm (UTC)
Aw. Cox Cable is in the area just north of here, but we can't get it where I live. We're stuck with a tiny cable company that is very unreliable or DirecTV (or possibly also Dish). We can't even get FIOS here. I still get internet from the cable company, and they are still unreliable.
11th-Jul-2012 02:36 pm (UTC)
We just have antenna TV, but I do have a girlfriend that has one of those boxes (I forget what they're called) that she plugs into her satellite and it sends the information to a website, so they can watch their shows anywhere. She lets me use it to watch my college basketball games!

For cable series and movies, we just borrow full seasons from the library. Which usually makes us a season or 2 behind, but whatever. It's free.
12th-Jul-2012 04:19 pm (UTC)
Is that a Sling box? I don't have one, but I think that's how they work.

Our local libraries don't have a lot of DVDs, but I often catch up on series from Netflix
12th-Jul-2012 04:22 pm (UTC)
Sling box, yes! Thank you. That's been bothering me since I posted it that I couldn't think of it (and heaven forbid I google it, LOL)
12th-Jul-2012 01:57 am (UTC)
I use a friend's HBOGO access, but I have to torrent or stream Doctor Who and Dexter.

Edited at 2012-07-12 01:57 am (UTC)
13th-Jul-2012 01:10 am (UTC)
I check out TV show DVDs from the library. So that means I'm always at least a season behind for my favorite TV shows.
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