Over the last several weeks and into the summer, Charter Communications is converting its hybrid analog system to an all-digital encrypted system. This change will have a big impact on many consumers of cable television in two ways: 1) All subscribers will now need to lease a box/device to receive any programming from Charter; and 2) Community access channels will no longer be carried in an analog format in the 90s. Subscribers will find them in the 980s only.
SOME CONSUMERS GET A FREE CABLE BOX FOR AWHILE
The Federal Communications Commission ruled in October of 2012 that video providers could encrypt all-digital systems. This means all programming on all-digital systems is scrambled making cable company-provided cable boxes or CableCARD devices necessary to view programming. Cable companies are allowed to charge consumers for the lease of these boxes and devices. However...
Time Warner customers to become Charter subscribers
As many have predicted, to prepare for the merger with Time Warner, Comcast is selling the Time Warner properties it would own in Wisconsin to Charter. The swap will help keep Comcast's subscriber numbers under 30% -- a number the FCC suggested in a case some years ago in order to prevent monopolistic practices. Here are a few articles from today covering the buy:
Since 2008, the State of Wisconsin is in charge of cable television regulation. Wisconsin cities no longer have any jurisdiction. Oversight of video providers is now split between the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection and the Department of Financial Institutions.
The state is funneling all complaints through DATCP and will forward complaints as appropriate to DFI.
Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection 2811 Agriculture Drive, P.O. Box 8911 Madison, Wisconsin 53708-8911, (608) 224-5012
Darling, Riedel, and Bishop Wester receive 2014 WCM Awards
The Most Reverend John Charles Wester, Bishop of Salt Lake City and American Community Television Executive Director Bunnie Riedel have both received the 2014 Friend of Access Award.
The Communications Committee of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, which Bishop Wester chairs, and ACT are leading efforts to pass the Community Access Preservation Act, a bill that would among other things restore dedicated funding for public, education, and government access centers in Wisconsin.
Connie Darling, former director of Fitchburg – FACT will be inducted into the WCM Hall of Fame. Darling managed the City of Fitchburg community access television center for over twenty years prior to her retirement in 2010.