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UPN and Direct TV


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21 replies to this topic

#1 of 22 OFFLINE   Jeremiah

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Posted August 20 2001 - 04:42 AM

Hello everybody, I was thinking about getting Direct TV for the upcomming football season but I wouldn't get UPN and was wondering if anyone knew when UPN was going to be part of Direct TV local programming in Los Angeles? I need to have my Seinfeld so the desicion is tough. Thank you.
I have seen Larry David in action, and that man is an animal, and he has to be stopped.

#2 of 22 OFFLINE   DeborahK

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Posted August 20 2001 - 07:40 AM

Hi,

We had a discussion about this very thing here just a few months back. To my knowledge, there are no plans yet to add UPN to DirecTV 's local lineup in L.A. My understanding is that the bottom line for DirecTV in adding locals is sports, i.e. they will add first and most quickly those locals that carry local ball games and such,which is how we come to have channel 9 but no channel 13 (UPN) on DTV in the Los Angeles market.

Since you are a potential customer, it might help if you called DTV's sales people and tell them your dilemma. As I understand it, DISH is offerering a superstation package that includes UPN, tho' for how long is unclear.

Eventually, of course, the satellite carriers are suppose to carry *all* the local channels (by 1/02 I believe) but I have also read that they are challenging this requirement in court. I have been wondering if the recent purchace of UPN by the people who also own FOX might change the UPN situation in L.A. at all, as the FOX affiliate is carried here. But, who knows?

Deborah in L.A.


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#3 of 22 OFFLINE   Evan A

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Posted August 20 2001 - 02:35 PM

Up here in Sacramento I talked to the local UPN programing director. (just had to use the phone real easy) I asked her what was going on and she said that it is a matter of just filing some papers. In sac they are filed and I get UPN in next 6 months! hehehe you need to move!

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#4 of 22 OFFLINE   Wayne Bundrick

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Posted August 20 2001 - 02:58 PM

"Must carry" rules go into effect January '02. The satellite companies are challenging it in court, the general belief is that they will not win because the cable companies are subject to the same rules and they couldn't beat it in court either.

Wayne Bundrick

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#5 of 22 OFFLINE   Dave Morton

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Posted August 21 2001 - 01:02 AM

For what it's worth, I have dish network and get the local channels for the chicagoland area. I get chicago's UPN station as part of my local channel package.

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#6 of 22 OFFLINE   Jeremiah

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Posted August 21 2001 - 02:16 AM

Thanks for everyones input, I still am not sure if I will get it until I see how UPN comes in when I use just the antenna. Thanks again.
I have seen Larry David in action, and that man is an animal, and he has to be stopped.

#7 of 22 OFFLINE   DeborahK

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Posted August 21 2001 - 04:33 AM

Hi, Wayne,

I think the sats will lose in court too, but fear they may be able to delay the implementation of carrying all the locals for a considerable amount of time (years maybe?) while they fight the battle.

Deborah

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#8 of 22 OFFLINE   DeborahK

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Posted August 21 2001 - 05:09 AM

Dave,

I bet your UPN station carries local baseball games and the like. In Los Angeles, our WB station does this, along with another unaffiliated local and DTV carries both of these in our locals package. As far as I can tell the only sports our UPN affiliate has is that smackdown wrestling thingy (is wrestling of this sort really a sport?) so no UPN here as of yet. Alas, I can not receive off the air programing where I live, because of the sky scrapers in downtown L.A., so I am stuck with the crappy cable that is supplied by the townhome association where I live for my UPN delivery. This did not make any difference to me until BUFFT The VAMPIRE SLAYER (to which I am addicted) moved from the WB to UPN. Sigh.

Deborah

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#9 of 22 OFFLINE   Bob Jackson

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Posted August 21 2001 - 01:35 PM

Just remember that the UPN station has to request Must Carry to be carried on 1/1/2.

If they requested Retransmission Consent (say becuase they think DirecTV will pay to carry them now that Buffy in on the station) then it will be carried whenever the two parties come to an agreement.

[Edited last by Bob Jackson on August 21, 2001 at 08:36 PM]

#10 of 22 OFFLINE   Tommy G

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Posted August 22 2001 - 12:36 AM

Jeremiah, you might want to look into Dishnetwork instead of DirecTV as you will be able to get a couple of UPN's. I live in Massachusetts and I get the Boston one as well as Chicago. I did a lot of research before I bought either one and Dishnetwork came out on top due to the UPN deal as well as being able to get all my favorite sports teams local channels for cheaper than DirecTV sports packages.
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#11 of 22 OFFLINE   Ken Chan

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Posted August 22 2001 - 10:15 AM

Quote:
that smackdown wrestling thingy (is wrestling of this sort really a sport?)

No -- they admitted that a while back, it's staged entertainment (as if there was any doubt). I believe they were trying to avoid some rules or regulations regarding legitimate competitions.

On a mostly unrelated tangent regarding digital TV: UPN13 must be the worst DTV station in L.A. Not much of a concern before, but now that Buffy and Roswell are on UPN....

//Ken

#12 of 22 OFFLINE   Dave Morton

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Posted August 23 2001 - 12:59 AM

Deb,

I don't think that the chicago UPN carries baseball games. That is for WGN or FOXsports channel. But I may be wrong. But I do think that they carry some college football and basketball from time to time. Typically, I don't watch that station (or any station) because I'm too busy chasing around an 8 month old that is very mobile. Posted Image

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#13 of 22 OFFLINE   DeborahK

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Posted August 28 2001 - 10:11 AM

Dave,

Chasing after an 8 month old is a live sport all on its own! Posted Image

Deborah

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#14 of 22 OFFLINE   Keith Mickunas

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Posted August 28 2001 - 01:21 PM

I may be missing something hear, but why are the satelite companies fighting having to carry the locals? I thought they had to go to court in the first place to get them because that was their biggest drawback. I recently got Dish and I wish I could get a few more of the channels, its a nuisance trying (and failing) to get these on an antenna. I'll be real happy when Dish starts to carry everything down here.

#15 of 22 OFFLINE   DeborahK

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Posted August 29 2001 - 04:20 AM

Hi, Keith,

The sats fought for the right to carry the big 4, i.e., CBS, NBC, ABC and Fox but, since the FCC requires the cable companies to carry *all* the locals in a given area, they are requiring the same of the satellite providers as well. So, the right to carry the "big" locals came with the burden to carry all the small ones, including any public access stations, as well. This is tremendously expensive, to say nothing of complex, and the satellite companies want to be exempted from this rule. This would, of course, put a burden on the cables that the sats wouldn't have so it is unlikely that they will win in court. Los Angeles has twelve or more local stations, for example, but DTV presently only carries six of them and UPN is not one of them. Every area is different and has different a constellation of locals. Individual carrying agreements (at a price, of course) must be struck with each station in each market. So, you can see the problem.

Hope that helps,

Deborah

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#16 of 22 OFFLINE   Keith Mickunas

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Posted August 29 2001 - 06:43 AM

Yeah, I got to thinking about it more and it does make sense that its a problem for them. The more stations they carry, the more bandwidth on the satelites they need. Plus, their forced to carry the station, and the station sets the price. That's a raw deal in my book. The FCC should step in and provide some regulation on that. After all, if the station is being broadcast over the satelite, that means more viewers for them, thus potentially more advertising dollars. It almost seems like the situation should be reversed and the station pay the cable and satelite companies for the privilege of being carried.

#17 of 22 OFFLINE   Michael St. Clair

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Posted August 29 2001 - 08:18 AM

Quote:
Yeah, I got to thinking about it more and it does make sense that its a problem for them. The more stations they carry, the more bandwidth on the satelites they need. Plus, their forced to carry the station, and the station sets the price. That's a raw deal in my book.

Actually, a station requesting must-carry cannot ask for compensation.

Off the top of my head, the following apply

1) The DBS provider is already carrying other stations in your area.
2) Your station must be classified as full-power.
3) You must provide a 'good quality' signal to the DBS provider (the DBS companies are trying to require a fiber connection in hopes of scaring stations away).
4) You cannot request compensation from the DBS provider.



#18 of 22 OFFLINE   DeborahK

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Posted August 29 2001 - 08:54 AM

Michael,

Thanks for the clarification. In the case of a station like UPN in a market such as L.A., I can see number 4 above as being a sticking point. I am sure that they would rather be carried with a negotiated $$ deal than request that the sats carry them for nothing. Also, number 3 may be a problem as someone else here mentioned that they have rather poor signal quality. So, who knows how long this could take, in this or any other given market?

Deborah

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#19 of 22 OFFLINE   Keith Mickunas

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Posted August 29 2001 - 11:49 AM

Michael,

I had heard a few years back from a friend at a cable company that they were required to carry the locals and pay for them. I had assumed this was still true and is being applied to the sats also. If its not, can you explain the current Dish Network situation? They've cut a local in Nashville and in San Francisco (one is NBC, the other ABC I believe) because the owner of those two is wanting a large sum for the right to carry an LA station, so they're being forced to not carry the other two unless they dish out the cash for the LA station. They've got info on their website if you want to check it out.

#20 of 22 OFFLINE   Michael St. Clair

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Posted August 29 2001 - 04:30 PM

"Must Carry" only applies if the station invokes it! This does not prevent the station from refusing to allow DBS to carry it and to ask for cash!

"Must Carry" goes into effect on January 1, 2002.

"Must Carry" makes financial sense for all stations that qualify, because they can raise their ad rates on the basis that more people can watch the station.

However, some stations have decided that DBS needs them badly enough that they are trying to get money from DBS, to eat their cake and have it too! If they go this route, "Must Carry" is moot.

DBS does NOT want "Must Carry", and is fighting it. They do not want to give up the transponder space.

If "Must Carry" goes into effect as scheduled, DBS may drop LIL (Local in Local) in some cities and/or their picture quality may get even worse! If it does go into effect, DBS will probably have to give equal bitrate to every station that it carries in a given market.

KCOP (UPN in LA) is full-power, so it meets at least that requirement.

[Edited last by Michael St. Clair on August 29, 2001 at 11:30 PM]




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