How do you receive your television programming?

Denver, Colorado
July 21, 2012 2:21pm CST
I am a DirecTV user and the recent financial bullying by Viacom over the channels they provide to satellite companies was quite disturbing. I knew when Viacom took over the control of some of the channels they would use their position in the matter to try and drive the non-cable companies out of business. I viewed what they were doing as a form of extortion. I admit the cable company in my area tries hard to get you to believe that they are the ONLY reliable source for television viewing, but having had both, I still prefer satellite to cable. There are some inherent problems with both systems, but I've had less outage with satellite than I had with cable. In my part of the world, where there are mountains and cable can't be laid, this cable company extortion was crazy. Cable cannot provide for all locations and their attempts to deny alternative television providers access to channels they are willing to pay a reasonable fee for was nothing more than a monopolistic play. What is you situation and how do you receive your television programming?
4 people like this
10 responses
@burrito88 (2779)
• United States
22 Jul 12
Right now, I think I am stuck with cable. I also live in the mountains where it can be tough to get broadcast TV by antenna. The cable company is relatively local and gives me all the Scranton stations, two from Allentown, and some from New York and Philadelphia. So far the one station conflict we had was when the Scranton Fox channel forced the cable company to drop the New York Fox station. That may not sound like much but it means local New York Giant fans miss games when Scranton broadcasts the Eagles instead. I tried switching to Direct TV at one point but the trees in my yard blocked to signal for the local Scranton stations which would have eliminated my network TV options. I'm not sure if I would miss the Viacom stations much but I do occasionally watch Spike and a few others. I considered Dish Network, but they long ago dropped SNY New York so that I couldn't watch the Mets. Now they are in a disagreemnt with AMC that has caused them to drop that channel. I wish Congress would pass a law making ala carte TV the rule that way we could pick (and pay for) what channels we really want on cable or satellite TV which might cue the providers into knowing what we really want to see. I for one, could easily live without all the music-only channels they run to build up their channel totals. The battles with satellite providers could be predicted based on the fights the cable outlets were having in the New York area.
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
I know how it is to be blocked from a satellite signal. My hubby used to work for DirecTV and he hated telling people they couldn't get a signal. In several cases he told customers to install a pole, where to install it, what kind to use and then call him back so he could install it. In most cases, the poles were a distance away from the home but cable could be laid from the dish to the house easily and buried. However, he did tell them don't expect it to be installed and buried in the winter when the ground was hard and wouldn't allow the cable to be buried. But it happens that there are cases where it just can't be done and it was in most cases on homes located in mountain regions. Like you, I'd love to be able to chose which channels I get, but I can block the ones I don't want to see in my television guide and when scrolling through channels. Unfortunately, until there is a change, I'll be paying for many I do not watch and that I've blocked. Here the battle is not only between satellite providers, but cable verses satellite. Now days, I also use TIVO and I can get many channels from them without either cable or satellite, just internet access.
@burrito88 (2779)
• United States
22 Jul 12
I think I might be able to get Direct TV now. If they put a short pole near the street in front of my house, it would be in front of the trees. Also, the house across the street has burned down, so that would also clear a path. I don't know if they would have to bury the wire here (going under my driveway) or if they could because of how rocky it is. What TV channels do you get with a TIVO? I've thought about buying a used one just to try it out. Doesn't that also require a subscription?
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
The first thing to remember, DirecTV won't install the post. You will have that responsibility including sinking it in concrete. TIVO charges different rates depending on where you are and what is available. I do get local channels, and I get Hulu Plus, Netflix, YouTube, and several others I haven't chosen. The receivers they have you pay for either through the subscription or independently. Just don't buy one through other sources where it may well be stolen. The receivers can be refurbished or new. They do have an online site that can tell you what it would cost. Hulu Plus, Netflix and others have a separate fee that pays directly to them depending on what your subscription entails. TIVO runs on a High Speed internet connection and must have above a certain speed to function. My receiver is part of the subscription for the first year, and after that it is another rate. You can check it out on their website. Remember, if that property gets rebuilt, you won't have satellite. Good luck with your research before you buy anything. You also might like to check out ROKU. They are also an internet based receiver.
@blue65packer (11835)
• United States
22 Jul 12
I have cable for my tv programming. I also have my phone and computer service through my cable company. I had it all bundled. I decided to do this becasue I was getting sick of paying a seperate bill for phone/internet and cable! It is a little cheaper having it all bundled through my cable company. I get all the channels I want and have not had any problems.
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
Glad the bundling is working for you. I may change mine over to that type of package with satellite. Thanks for your response.
@burrito88 (2779)
• United States
23 Jul 12
Ultimately, I am considering bundling if I can keep down the extra cable charges.
@Fishmomma (11467)
• United States
5 Aug 12
We had a couple options when we moved in last year, but decided to stay with Time Warner for cable when it was going to cost less to bundle television, internet and phone. The other companies couldn't offer a better price. I'll admit if we just had cable costs, then it would have paid off changing; however, did save money by dumping the costly Verizon. Our telephone bill is about 50% less, so it was a great change. The part that is hard to believe we have Vonage and the Time Warner phone and the bill is that much less. If I didn't need a work phone it would have been about 75% less.
@clrumfelt (5424)
• United States
22 Jul 12
My satellite service provider is Dish Network. I'm pretty happy with them. We also use Netflix streaming video and that helps to broaden our choices when the regular programming isn't stuff we like.
• Denver, Colorado
27 Aug 12
Thanks for the response. In our area, Dish is not the preferred provider. I've had many friends change to DirecTv because they had very bad experiences with Dish. Glad you are happy with your provider.
@stealthy (8188)
• United States
22 Jul 12
I have Comcast cable. A long time ago I just used rabbit ears and had Comcast for Internet. Than they came out with a plan where if you added basic TV, the whole package of both Internet and TV was cheaper than Internet by itself. I have been fairly happy with it even after going through some problems when they switched to totally digital for TV(they sent conversion boxes for free). They also have a lot of TV on the Internet that can't be found elsewhere. I also have a small TV in the bedroom that I don't use often that is a digital TV and I use rabbit ears on it. For one station the rabbit ears have to be turned just right to get it.
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
I had Comcast for years because my ex husband worked for them and we got it for free. Of course, once divorced, I had to choose who to use. Comcast is not cheap here and actually more expensive than what I have now. I still have an exterior antenna if necessary for local channels that is digital. A small handheld tv can be hooked to its cable and the signal received even without electric since the tv is also battery powered along with electric. I do remember the rabbit ears but here unless the rabbit ears have been modified for the new digital signal along with the tv, you won't get anything with any quality if you get a signal at all. Thanks for the response.
@shibham (17025)
• India
22 Jul 12
Hi cotruelove... In my locality, we have both cable and dish facilities for viewing TV programs. Most often the cable viewing is disturbing as the pictures are not crystal clear. Hence i have dish connection to view first class pictures with digital sound. It is costlier than cable but no disturbance at all. Have a nice time,.
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
One of the primary reasons I quit cable was quality and constant problems just getting a signal. Don't know why we had so many outages, but it was far more frequent than the ones I get on satellite due to weather and lasted far longer than a thunder storm. I can deal with winter and the satellite dish easily by installing a warming unit on the dish, but I was really tired of having no signal for days due to freezing cable lines or connectors. Thanks for your response.
@bostonphil (4402)
• United States
21 Jul 12
I am bundled with my cable company which is Time Warner Cable. My service is pretty good but I believe that it is way too expensive for what I get. I have digital TV with HBO. I pay $170 every month for my TV, internet and home land line. It is not entirely my cable companies fault. A lot of the cost is due to fees and taxes but I am always looking at other options. The programming is just so - so. I find myself watching a lot of programs on just the regular network channels. I love watching a good movie but I often can not find one that fits my taste.
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
Yep, it is expensive. Even when I add up all the services I have, it is about the same price you pay when I consider phone, internet and satellite. The taxes are crazy. Thanks for your response.
@dragon54u (31636)
• United States
21 Jul 12
When I first moved here I found, to my dismay, that reception was nearly impossible. Rabbit ears were not enough and many people had those huge, tall tower antennas or the big ones on the top of their houses. So I got DISH and it was always being interrupted by winds, storms, solar flares, etc. As soon as I heard that U-Verse was available I jumped on it. Mainly because I got $350 in gift cards to sign up! But everything is underground fiber optic stuff and I'm so very pleased with the service. Not the price, though. When I move again I don't know what I'll get but it won't be a satellite provider. I'm really content with just network TV but I'll be living with my son who likes more variety. I've come to like it, too. I don't like paying all that money but since I don't go to movies or anything else I can justify the expense.
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
Sounds like you found something that works good for you. Congratulations. Like you the cost of television, no matter how you get it, has become a big expense for most of us. Thanks for the response.
@starrm (124)
• United States
21 Jul 12
I have Verizon Fios and I love it. My ex-girlfriend had and still has Direct Tv and I'd only switch to it for the Sunday Ticket/NFL package and even that is now available on streaming devices like the Playstation 3.
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
Thanks for your response. I'll have to check into Verizon Fios. I know from my TIVO, I can get streaming on many programs easily and cheaply.
• United States
21 Jul 12
I hav cable vision right now. In a week I will be moving and I will be watching tv on the computer. I will be doing this for a few months. to see how much I can save and how long I can go without tv.
• Denver, Colorado
22 Jul 12
Let me know how that works out. I can appreciate reducing the expense. But, the hubby primarily pays for television and I'm willing to let him. Thanks for your response to the post.