Interesting article in the New York Times about how FOX and Univision are considering leaving the public airwaves over their loss in the Aereo lawsuit.
For those of you not keeping up, Aereo is a company backed by Barry Diller that streams over-the-air broadcasts for a fee to New Yorkers. It allows subscribers to view live broadcasts and record them for later viewing. Doesn’t sound that much different than TiVo other than they are streaming over the internet instead of using a cable or satellite system or OTA antenna.
It’s been nearly six months since I discontinued my Dish service and I have no complaints. I still don’t have time to watch all the programming that’s available to me and my bill has gone from $55/month to $15.98/month ($7.99/month each for Netflix and Hulu Plus). I actually rent a few new releases now and then from my local video store and from iTunes. I probably spend less than half what I used to spend on Satellite even with those expenditures. I miss sports a little, but I go out and mingle with actual human beings when there’s an OSU or Thunder game that I absolutely must see.
If FOX went off the air, I could still get The Following and Touch off of Hulu Plus and I don’t watch Univision; same with the other broadcast networks. I’m already trying to wean myself off all the cop shows on CBS in favor of having access to a large chunk of foreign and silent films on Hulu Plus. It’s sort of like the New York Times thinking my life is incomplete because I’m not giving them $35/month; my life is pretty complete as it is and I can always read a book. I have options.
Sure, I might miss the local storms coverage, but I seem to recall that there are at least half a dozen tornado apps available for my iPhone and I’m not sure the local FOX affiliate has a meteorologist on staff. So go ahead, make my day: release that broadcast spectrum back to the government so that it can be auctioned off, potentially providing better wireless internet and helping to reduce the deficit.