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Old 02-15-2012, 07:17 PM   #1
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On, or after, March 15 2012, Funimation (channel 262) will be removed from the FiOS TV® lineup and you will no longer be able to view this content.

They claim to be discontinuing it due to "very low viewership". We need to show them otherwise! Sign the petition to save Funimation!



http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/savefunimation/

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Old 02-15-2012, 08:48 PM   #2
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They have statistics on what these STB's are tuned to. So if what they say is true, unfortunately a petition will do absolutely nothing. I cant imagine it having lower ratings than CSPAN though. Why there are 3 CSPANS I could never understand.

They should also get rid of the music channels and make it all streaming music channels, think its a total waste of space
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Old 02-16-2012, 09:00 AM   #3
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They have statistics on what these STB's are tuned to. So if what they say is true, unfortunately a petition will do absolutely nothing. I cant imagine it having lower ratings than CSPAN though. Why there are 3 CSPANS I could never understand.

They should also get rid of the music channels and make it all streaming music channels, think its a total waste of space
As a C-SPAN viewer, I couldn't let this outrage sit . In all seriousness, I do watch C-SPAN. Ok, I never watch C-SPAN3 (it's all historical stuff), but come election time, I tune regularly in to the first 2. Granted, I may be one of all of 4 people in the US who actually cares about following the Canadian election returns (yes... I did watch those a couple years ago), and I make my wife wonder about my sanity on some of those - a few years ago she came into the living room, asking what I was watching on TV. I said 'C-SPAN... they're doing live coverage of the British parliamentary elections...' She shook her head and left the room. In my defense I yelled out 'what... this is an important election!' She responded with 'they're ALL important elections...' Meaning, that's what I always say.

I have to say, the music channels streaming idea does have merit. There are issues with it, to be sure - it wouldn't work if you didn't have an ip-enabled box, e.g. If I just had one of the digital adapters on my TV, I couldn't get the feeds. But if they offered up a true streaming service for it - e.g. running to my computer, or streaming to a third-party device (add it to their channels available via Xbox), it would be a good comprimise - especially if they also made it available via streaming to their ip-enabled boxes (maybe make it a widget, like I Heart Radio). Heck, to make it streaming they wouldn't have to work that hard anyway - Music Choice already offers a streaming option, but Verizon isn't a carrier of that.

On the downside, the MC channels take up very little space. I believe all of them come in on the same QAM channel. Get rid of the linear channels, and you free up enough room for two more HD channels. But then again, they take up so little room because they require so little bandwidth - which makes them ideal for streaming.
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Old 02-16-2012, 09:52 AM   #4
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How could all those music channels fit into one QAM channel? They all have running video, dont they? I thought it was 8 SD channels per virtual channel. I just counted 47 MC channels. I was under the impression that this could free almost 6 QAM channels.

In addition, I always thought the spanish stations were a waste of space as well. They should have one feed for the video with a language setting for the user.

Obviously theres some I dont understand regarding the architecture.
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Old 02-16-2012, 09:58 AM   #5
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Edit : misread.
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:17 AM   #6
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How could all those music channels fit into one QAM channel? They all have running video, dont they? I thought it was 8 SD channels per virtual channel. I just counted 47 MC channels. I was under the impression that this could free almost 6 QAM channels.

In addition, I always thought the spanish stations were a waste of space as well. They should have one feed for the video with a language setting for the user.

Obviously theres some I dont understand regarding the architecture.
The MC channels don't really have video - what you see is a single image that changes periodically (that's why they don't come up instantly when you tune to the channel and hear the audio first), so each MC channel doesn't need much bandwidth to download those images and the audio feed, versus a regular HD channel. Last I read the MC channels are only 192kbs audio, so they pack alot of them on a single QAM.
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:24 AM   #7
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How could all those music channels fit into one QAM channel? They all have running video, dont they? I thought it was 8 SD channels per virtual channel. I just counted 47 MC channels. I was under the impression that this could free almost 6 QAM channels.

In addition, I always thought the spanish stations were a waste of space as well. They should have one feed for the video with a language setting for the user.

Obviously theres some I dont understand regarding the architecture.
Standard SD channels run at 4 - 5 Mbps, peak. Since a QAM runs about ~40Mbps, that means that Verizon puts 8 to 9 SD channels in a QAM. The Music Choice channels are primarily audio. Yeah, they have screens of information, but note at how rarely they change - they're not video in the strict sense and require very little bandwidth to transmit (with digital you only send bits corresponding to the parts of the screen that actually changes - if you have a static image, then you don't continually send those bits). As such, those channels take up a fraction of the bandwidth that traditional SD channels do.

It's also why the sound quality on those channels is much better than the other music channels they used to have (forgetting the name of those right now). With those other channels, they squeezed some 54 or 55 music channels into the same space where MC puts 47. That led to pretty spotty audio quality. But even with 47 channels, there's more than enough room to have all feeds in a single QAM, while maintaining good audio quality (ok, it's not the best, but definitely passable, and I listen to them all the time - the light classical is a favorite for me when I don't feel like watching anything, and I just want to read - it's great background music, especially when it's fed through my stereo system).

As for the Spanish channels - I guess that all depends. The Spanish version of those channels are more than just the same as the English version with a Spanish overdubbing. They are separate channels. Also, there are some duplicates - channels that exist in both their standard tiers and their Spanish package. But just because they take up two slots in the guide doesn't mean that they take twice the bandwidth to carry. They carry the channel once, and just map it to two different channel slots. It doesn't require any additional bandwidth to do that.

All in all, they have to do something. They're up against the wall on space, and they need to make some changes. And no matter which way they go, they're going to piss someone off. I like the idea of migrating MC to a streaming feed. I think that makes some sense, and frees up enough space to add a couple HD channels.
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Old 02-16-2012, 10:49 AM   #8
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One (or two) other point with the C-SPAN channels. First, they're free. Verizon pays nothing to carry them. Well, in a sense that's not totally true. The cable industry pays for the production of those channels, so in a very small sense, Verizon does pay for them. They just don't pay to carry them, like they do with traditional cable channels. And if they're going to pay to produce them anyway... may as well carry them. But it costs Verizon almost nothing. Heck, you can view them on line.

Next, they count as public service channels, and all cable systems are required, by law, to carry so many of those. That's one reason you see them carrying those religious channels too. They also count.
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Old 02-16-2012, 12:42 PM   #9
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Not trying to take away your CSPAN JPL, I was talking about actual ratings. hahahaha

Thanx for the info.

The answer to all of Verizons problems is converting to IPTV. Tune to a channel, and it should instantly start up an on-demand feed. At the very least, start doing this for the channels with lowest viewership.

Since audio takes such little space, I also wish they would start carrying DTS surround as well. They have bigger fish to fry, but there are quite a few audiophiles out there. I dont think any other provider carries it.

Wheres the 1080p on-demand? They have large pipes, why dont they carry this? Theres millions upon millions of 1080p sets out there, and is only utilized via blu-ray and gaming. Would make for good marketing if their HD on-demand was 1080p.
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Old 02-16-2012, 01:59 PM   #10
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Not trying to take away your CSPAN JPL, I was talking about actual ratings. hahahaha

Thanx for the info.

The answer to all of Verizons problems is converting to IPTV. Tune to a channel, and it should instantly start up an on-demand feed. At the very least, start doing this for the channels with lowest viewership.

Since audio takes such little space, I also wish they would start carrying DTS surround as well. They have bigger fish to fry, but there are quite a few audiophiles out there. I dont think any other provider carries it.

Wheres the 1080p on-demand? They have large pipes, why dont they carry this? Theres millions upon millions of 1080p sets out there, and is only utilized via blu-ray and gaming. Would make for good marketing if their HD on-demand was 1080p.
Good... glad we're settled on the whole C-SPAN thing - me and their 5 other viewers of the channel thank you . As for IP, I know that was their plan. They were supposed to roll it out a year ago. They had many of the updates needed in their architecture rolled out set to handle it. And then they shelved it. I don't know why. I understand they hit some issues. That caused some scrambling on their part.

I BELIEVE it's still their long-range goal, but they need to do something in the meantime to free up space. One thing that they've done is that they've moved some HD feeds to 3:1 compression. They can get away with it because channels like HBO are fed to Verizon in mpeg-4 format. Verizon converts to mpeg-2, but because mpeg-4 is more highly compressed, Verizon gains nothing by having that channel take up half a QAM.

They did something similar with the Rainbow channels (AMC, e.g.). Rainbow started feeding their channels to all providers with a 4:1 compression. Verizon took advantage of that - again, doing 2:1 with those channels buys Verizon nothing.

Still, they have more work to do. One possible avenue - migrate to mpeg-4 themselves. It's a much more efficient compression algorithm, which would allow them to carry 50% more in the same space with virtually no loss of PQ. The problem with that approach - their older boxes don't support MPEG-4 (the SD boxes don't, and the 6xxx HD boxes don't).

Even if they migrate to IP, they still have some stuff to work out. For example customers with the digital adapter would lose those channels, since they can't handle IP. But since they would get the most bang for the buck by going IP with the HD channels anyway, they COULD migrate HD channels to IP without affecting those users. But then you have the issue of cable card users. They would have to provide a mechanism for those customers to get those channels.

There are lots of permutations they can take - move the lowest viewed channels to IP... move only new channels to IP (that way you don't cause someone to lose a channel)... move the premiums to IP...

Then there's the possibility of going 1GHz QAM, which has all sorts of other issues - not the least of which is the fact that their ONTs don't run up that high, and their STBs aren't spec'd for it.

No matter what they do, they're going to disrupt some customer base. But they have to do something. Of all the approaches, the least costly and least disruptive is probably the mpeg-4 conversion. That could be a good short-term fix, and then you follow it up with a migration to IP. Or something like that.
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Old 02-16-2012, 02:02 PM   #11
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Oh, and I agree with your comment about 1080p VOD. What's the deal with that? Why not offer it up?
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Old 02-16-2012, 03:27 PM   #12
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I really dont think cable card users is a big deal. If they lose channels, oh well. They really make up a tiny minority of users. In 4 years installing FioS, I had FOUR installs with cable cards.

Anyone with DCT's could be given STB's at DCT price.

IPTV is an absolute must, the possibilities are endless. Its really a shame they didnt go that route from the start. I dont think Verizon wants to go the cable co. route and start over compressing. They want the reputation of having the best PQ. Perhaps a bigger issue with IPTV is how many streams can go at the same time? Would cause big issues for people with a lot of STB's. Obviously MoCa has its limits as well, we cant install 150/65 internet with it.

AT&T Uverse got it partially right at least. They just need FiOS's pipe. Theyre also exempt from franchise agreements, another +


The real problem here are all those people with CRT's. Buy new TV's already so we can scrap SD channels and get everything in HD !
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Old 02-16-2012, 08:09 PM   #13
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The thing is, with cable cards, there is a way to do it. TiVo has been asking for upstream functionality to be an FCC requirement for a while now. That's really the sticky point with it - but the technology is there to do it. Also, it's not the number of folks that's the issue. The FCC has a separable security requirement - meaning that the security mechanism for receiving a channel has to be separate from the set top box. I THINK they've toned that original requirement to be honest (or they couldn't still offer the 6xxx boxes, the digital adapters, or the SD STBs), but they have come down on cable providers who've gone the SDV route because they see that as a violation of that separable security requirement (meaning if I have a cable card, I couldn't get those channels fed via SDV either), resulting in fines to the cable companies.

I agree with you about the need for IP. They do have the pipe to handle it. They just need to move forward with a strategy.
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Old 02-16-2012, 08:12 PM   #14
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Oh and as for the issue of concurrent IP streams, yeah that is a limitation. However, I think you can get around it. Consider this - they have 870 MHz of QAM spectrum that they currently use for their linear TV feeds. What if they took a chunk of that - say 10 QAM's worth (enough for 20 HD channels) and used that as a multi-feed spectrum for IP. You could then have 20 concurrent HD feeds without eating further into your internet bandwidth - you would be using that space of QAM to send your IP stream. Sort of like what they do with SDV. I think there are definitely architectures that let you get around the issue. Maybe that's what they're shooting for?
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Old 02-17-2012, 03:30 PM   #15
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...but they have come down on cable providers who've gone the SDV route because they see that as a violation of that separable security requirement (meaning if I have a cable card, I couldn't get those channels fed via SDV either), resulting in fines to the cable companies...
People that use the Ceton Cable Card Tuner have been able to use it together with a Tuner adapter to access the SDV channels. I believe at first there were some issues, but it had more to do with Ceton's firmware then the adapters.

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