Friday, March 5, 2010

Will FCC Get Involved in Cablevision ABC Mess

It seems Senator John Kerry remains tired of these negotiations between broadcaster and cable company. "As Chairman of the Commerce Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet, he just weighed in on Cablevision negotiations that could leave 3.1 million Cablevision customers without ABC's Oscars broadcast on Sunday. In a letter to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski Kerry urges Genachowski to push both parties to keep WABC on air during negotiations."

Is it now time for the FCC to have an opinion on all negotiations regarding broadcasters and cable companies? Should government get involved or let competition determine outcome. As there are other means to get these signals, the best advice for the consumer could just be to switch providers.

Tivo Building Box to Work With Cable Companies

Tru2way, cable's architecture to assure the security of its programming, has not been well received by TV manufacturers. Notice that most new TV sets come with internet connects and not Cablecard slots. Well Tivo wants to play nice in the sandbox. "TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO) says it's building a tru2way version of its new interface for Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) and other cable operators, but it's also pitching major MSOs on using the company's new "Premiere" boxes -- unveiled Tuesday night -- as their primary DVR for cable subscribers." Quickly please!

I hate my Motorola DVR, but I need the cable box to get on demand. The Tivo interface, search features, and other differences makes it the best DVR box out there today. And it seems Tivo is finally modifying its strategy to gain new business. "While selling DVRs remains a core part of TiVo's business, (CEO Tom) Rogers said the company remains focused on generating revenue from the software for its user interface." The sooner Tivo software is added to my DVR box, the happier I will be.

The public has no idea what a Cablecard is and the cable companies do little to promote them. Tivo boxes need a card to access all the scrambled/digital channels. Ask a CSR about them and you get confusion; go online and you get little or no information, especially on the MSOs' own websites. It remains an uphill road but I am feeling hopeful.

Lastly, what great news to hear that Dish has lost yet again in their lawsuit with Tivo. You steal, you pay the price!