In the wake of the month-long blackout that affected 3 million CBS viewers in several major cities and Showtime subscribers nationwide, Congresswoman Anna Eshoo of California has drafted legislation that would give the Federal Communications Commission the authority to prevent blackouts, and give consumers the right to decide whether or not they want to pay for watching broadcast networks on cable. [More]
A scream of rage goes up, a long howl filled with frustration. You forgot to set the DVR to tape the latest episode of Breaking Amish: L.A. But there’s hope yet for cable and satellite customers, as video on demand programming has been improving through the years, and is now available to 60% of American TV households. [More]
Sad that the summer holiday season is ending? Or maybe you’re burned out and cash-poor from going out too frequently? If you’re stuck inside this weekend, you might as well close the curtains, crack open some snacks and binge-watch entire seasons of shows like Orange Is the New Black, The Fall, and Vikings. The folks at AVclub.com have curated a list of 26 shows you could cram into a weekend (not at once, unless you are able to watch several TVs simultaneously without losing your grip on reality), along with info on where to stream each show. [AVclub.com]
I’m no weathervane (or AM I?!?) but it seems the wind is shifting in the land of TV content and Internet streaming. Sony and Viacom are reportedly close to a deal that would allow network programs from MTV, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and the like to be carried on a system Sony’s working on. [More]
Even if you’ve never watched a single episode of “Breaking Bad,” the greatest show on television might make your life better. That’s because
Walter and Skylar White are AMC is sponsoring free car wash events in eight cities in honor of Sunday’s premiere. The businesses will rebrand themselves as the show’s fictional A1A Car Wash. Octopus Car Wash, the real-life Albuquerque business that stands in for the fictional A1A, will not be participating. If you live in Denver, Washington D.C., Detroit, Cleveland, Los Angeles, San Diego, Dallas, or Houston and have a dirty Pontiac Aztek, drive it on over there. [AMC]
Even while it’s being sued by all the major broadcast networks, video-streaming service Aereo continues to expand into new markets with the announcement today of launch dates for customers in the Miami, Houston, and Dallas/Ft. Worth areas. [More]
Consumerist reader “A” works at Best Buy and sees a lot of customers buying large TVs. He also sees many of those TV-buying customers making the same mistakes when it comes time to take that new set home. [More]
Whether you’ve still got an older box TV or a flat panel mounted on a wall, a new study says falling televisions present a very real danger to young kids. Thousands of injuries resulting from tippy TVs have been reported every year, say researchers, and the numbers coming out of emergency rooms related to tipping TVs are only going up. [More]
Remember the days when basic cable was considered a joke and all the real shows were on the broadcast networks? Back in those days, it sort of made sense that the FCC might care about things like bad language, nudity (and supposedly violence, though that never really seemed to be an issue) on network TV. But now, with the majority of viewers spending their TV-watching time glued to basic cable shows featuring loudmouthed, obnoxious, hateful, “real” people shouting at each other in between commercials, the networks are asking the FCC to lighten the heck up. [More]
Right about now, we imagine Aereo is doing a happy dance and singing a little “na na na na na naaaa!’ in the general direction of the major TV networks. See, broadcasters were ticked off that Aereo’s customers could stream their shows from the Internet using the Aereo system, and claimed that the company infringed on their copyrights. But the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the networks’ plea to shut down Aereo.
For years, Hollywood studios have been tossing piles of cash at Facebook in the hopes that getting people to “like” a movie or TV show would somehow translate into box-office returns or high ratings. But some studio executives are reportedly wondering if this might be a waste of money. [More]
Price-fixin — it isn’t just for book publishers anymore (not that it ever really was unique to that industry, but you get the point): China fined Samsung and LG Displays a total of $35 million charging that the companies fixed the prices of LCD panels that were then sold to TV manufacturers. And if the TV makers are shelling out more for parts, guess who that raised price gets passed on to? Yup, all of us. [More]
Over the New Year’s holiday, a tantalizing rumor spread across the interwebs. Intel is preparing a new set-top box to compete with the relatively unsuccessful Google TV and the relatively successful Apple TV. Yawn: what’s so interesting about that? Word was that their ultimate goal was to make à la carte cable a reality. That’s a utopian concept of sorts where consumers choose and pay for only the channels they’re interested in. Could Intel make it a reality? No, probably not, because the content providers stand in their way. You know, the companies that make big bucks selling their channels to cable providers, who in turn charge to beam them into the homes of people who didn’t want them in the first place. [More]
Warner Bros. is betting that you really like Gossip Girl, The Vampire Diaries and The Big Bang Theory. It seems that way at least, as those are the only three shows it’s currently offering through its new Day After TV app for iOS (only in the U.S.), which allows users to watch episodes the day after they air. At least they’ve got the attention of my 19-year-old female cousin. Damon is pretty darn dreamy.* [More]
When a company or an individual spreads misinformation, we like to think that it’s out of ignorance instead of greed or malice. Such as the Charter Cable customer service representative who told reader Paul that he shouldn’t cancel his cable because later this year, over-the-air broadcasts will end and he will need cable or satellite service to keep watching TV.
This might be a great argument for convincing people not to cancel their cable. The problem is that it is not, strictly speaking, true. [More]
Renato bought a 50″ Sanyo LCD TV at Walmart with the understanding that he’d be able to use a DVI adapter and the audio port instead of the HDMI port that his computer doesn’t have. This would have been true had the TV’s audio port been working. He called Sanyo’s tech support for help, only to discover that their tech support staff knew less than he did about how audio and video ports work. They were, however, pretty good at reading the manual.
For the last few years, TV manufacturers have been pushing 3D technology to consumers as a great new way to view television, but broadcasters have been slow to provide enough content to make the switch worthwhile. Here’s a look at some of the numbers that highlight the problems.