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Thread: Cord Cutters

  1. #41
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Roku a great alternative

    I have two Roku boxes and use Netflix and OTA for locals. Still using magic jack plus for phone service and it works great. Don't let the cable companies gouge you. Bell and Rogers are both overcharging customers , band together and rid yourself of their control over what you watch !!!!

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Online Content is the King of the Castle and I'm the Dirty Rascal

    The content from OTA isn't good enough to satisfy me. Even if I had access to all of the major and minor OTA channels (I rarely get FOX, Bounce or other fringe channels), I would still miss channel surfing with Rogers ... even surfing through just the bunch of channels that come with the the 3 tiers of analogue channels. I use OTA for 16x9 widescreen feeds to avoid Cable's 4x3 "supposed" safe-mode (apparently for suckers like me without an HDTV) and to avoid the simsubs. Other than that, OTA content pales in comparison to the diversity that Rogers used to offer me (yes, even with all the crap that was also included in my Cable bill).

    However, I still prefer downloading the content that I'm in the mood to see, rather than waiting for it to pop up in Canada (whenever and wherever Shakira decides to air it).

    It's very tough to get everything that we're interested in (even if everything was completely FREE), unless perhaps we happen to have very restrictive tastes and only liked watching a specific genre of shows that featured only a handful of our favourite stars. However, if your tastes are anything like mine, there's simply not enough time in the day to keep up.

    Today I had to keep downloading/juggling 8 different files at the same time, to even feel satisfied that I was spending my downloading time "wisely." Nobody said that downloading free content (without using torrents) was going to be easy, but I think my tastes are too varied to ever catch up with what I missed (since I don't have access to DirecTV like I used to when I was younger).

    I've already got enough stored content to last me a few months, but it's hard to stop myself from going after even more. If this goes on for too long, I might have to cut my library cord and take a break from my almost unlimited shopping spree.

    Time is money, so if I end up spending more time downloading content than actually watching it, that content comes with a very steep price. The good news is that I'm having a lot of fun robbing from the rich and giving to the poor ... the bad news is that I'd rather be rich enough to not care about being robbed.

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Why can't Canadian TV be more like the Internet?

    Almost two weeks has passed since my last post in this thread, so I need to blow off some more steam. How in the world have I been so oblivious to the rampant misuse of the Internet? Using it to transmit copyrighted material with no regard for the consequences is actually quite fascinating. Truly bizarre.

    Other countries are blocking "dangerous" websites, can Canada be far behind?

    Even though Google is preparing to alter its search engine to push some of the dangerous websites closer to the bottom of the search results for copyrighted material, I'm still getting better and better at finding what I want to watch (and often stumbling across content that I didn't even know existed -- my jaw drops several times a week).

    If I download and stream countless hours of things that I only discovered by searching the Internet, Canadian Cable TV only has itself to blame.

    Today I went to the library to stream the daily episodes of Reviews on the Run because it seems to have been temporarily removed from the CityTv Toronto schedule due to the Olympics (I no longer have access to the other regional CityTv channels). So, while I was streaming Reviews on the Run online, and searching for links to various US programs that have yet to air in Canada, I stumbled across a bunch of pre-release DVDs and On Demand exclusive movies all for the taking.

    Whenever I see US networks advertising content that's only available on their sister channels (USA, TNT, etc.), I get curious and head off to the library to get my fix. Today I needed an extra fix, so I had to do some after-hour streaming and downloading at Future Shop. So many computers hooked up to the Internet and nobody was using them (except for me). What a waste.

    I'm now more of an Internet addict than ever before.

    The more TV I watch, the more I want to go online and watch American content that either hasn't aired in Canada, or is perhaps several episodes behind the American broadcasts.

    Look at all the content that has available for Americans to stream or download, and then look at the zero content that has for us. It's not fair. Life isn't fair. The Internet isn't fair, nor balanced. iTunes Canada ... another second-rate attempt at parity.

    Isn't it my job to balance it all out? I can't find everything that I'm looking for (hello, G-Spot: Season 3), but it all seems to even out when I uncover great content that I never even knew existed.

    I love searching the Internet for buried treasure, especially because it's often being hoarded or ignored by our Canadian BDUs.

    This is no longer about cutting much of anything, it's actually about reinventing the Internet to better serve the public interest at the expense of the providers.

    Now that the balance of power seems to have shifted to the average Joe, it's only a matter of time before governments are forced to take action and squash this illusion of entitlement. The freedom to choose what to watch and when to watch it, is something that can't be allowed ... especially in this country.

    2012 has been here for a while, and 2013 is just around the corner.

    2013 should be the year of HD. Bugger off, SD.

    In the past, the Canadian BDUs acted as the middle men for access to the US content, but now that the Internet has exploded with an unlimited supply of content, it's much too difficult for me to look the other way at a less favourable and less interesting Canadian entertainment industry.

    Why are we so far behind the Americans? It's an insult to my intelligence to tell me that all is well in Canada and there's no need to desire equal access to content from across our borders. Americans should get equal access to our crap and we should get equal access to theirs (as well as the good stuff).

    As great as Live TV content is, it's time to move the sporting events to the less desirable channels to improve their ratings; send the CFL games to the community cable channels and give the Nascar contract to the CBC; endless delays during Nascar programming will also allow for even more cheap reruns of Being Erica. Curling belongs on OWN (sweeping isn't a sport ... it's women's work) and Lacrosse belongs on APTN (how many times can I watch Speed?).

    Downloading and streaming content long BEFORE it airs in Canada (if it ever airs in Canada) has spoiled me even further.

    It will be a sad day when my free broadband Internet access is restricted enough to make it virtually useless ... much like the state of Canadian television is right now.

    Nothing lasts forever ... not even me. :(

  4. #44
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    An apple a day keeps my hope alive.

    Hmmm. G-Spot Season 3 (eight episodes) is available on iTunes Canada for $18 (in HD).

    Now all I need to do is to get broadband Internet service and an Apple Tv box (or improve my Google search techniques).

    EDIT: I finally decided to buy the SD version of G-Spot Season 3 for $10.99 US (about $12.xx Canadian) from Vudu ... Note: and iTunes US had it for $9.99 US dollars; iTunes Canada for $12.99, but since I didn't want to download the iTunes program or the Microsoft Silverlight program (used for and risk running into possible computer problems (compatibility issues, etc.), I stuck with Vudu and also got 5 free older SD movies.
    Last edited by PokerFace; 10-09-2014 at 03:56 AM. Reason: added EDIT

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Words getting out...

    My apt building's replacing all the windows/patio doors and the guy came to do mine yesterday.

    When he saw my antenna's he thought it was a good idea and remarked "Cable isn't worth paying for anymore".

    He even, sorta, knew about sub-channels since he said "some Tvs have special tuners that can get in different channels".

    I tried to explain more but I knew he wasn't quote getting what I was saying but it's good to see even joe 6 packs are catching on.

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    It's a Pirate's life for me!

    It's close to that 2 week time again, and it now appears that I've gone as far as I need to go ... although since there seems to be more and more websites and search engines that I stumble across almost every week, I doubt that I will ever stop being amazed at the simplicity of being a pirate (I am not a crook).

    Replacing cable/satellite TV with free OTA viewing is not even close to being a proper alternative. Throwing in visits to the public libraries and DVD kiosks for movies and TV series does improve things, but if you haven't explored the Internet lately, you have no idea of what you're missing.

    Download Speed and quality aren't much of an issue for me anymore. Most of the new stuff can be downloaded in 5 to 20 minutes (depending on the size of the content). Whether I want SD 2.0 audio or HD 5.1 audio, the choice is mine.

    Why wait for Showtime (or HBO Canada) to air the latest episode of the TV series Episodes, when you can download it earlier using the BBC as the source file?

    Whether you want the latest (day and date, or next day) Australian TV offering from Australia's Ten channel, etc. (yes, even Australia's Ten channel has some snipes, although they look kind of stylish at times), the latest North American or UK DVD/Blu-ray rips (often a month before street date, although since there are no DVD extras included, I still need to borrow some DVDs from the Public Libraries), or almost anything that is streaming in advance of DVD and theatrical releases, the Internet is the only place that I know of that can offer all of this for free (unless you pay for broadband Internet service at your home).

    Think of the Internet as your own personal On-Demand service with offerings from all over the world (much of which can't be bought or viewed by Canadians any other way) for free (although you still have to buy enough storage devices to hold all that you desire).

    Even with my free access to the Internet's worldly treasures, I still think that there's value in the traditional cable/satellite model. Other than Live TV (which can still be found on the Internet), I still enjoy surfing through a bunch of channels and discovering content that I would have never expected to enjoy and thus would have probably never searched for while I was online.

    I'd put the value of the 50 (or thereabouts) analogue channels on Rogers' three analogue tiers at about $8.50/month, but I would probably pay about $10 plus tax for the privilege of channel surfing.

    Life is too short to be without broadband Internet service, but if you can't or refuse to pay for broadband Internet service at your home ... there are always other ways to get your fix for free like I do.

    Cutting the cord turned out to be one of the greatest things that I've ever done. It forced me to look for other ways to get the content that I was cut off from, without having to wait many months for DVD releases.

    If the Internet suddenly lost the premium entertainment websites that make being a pirate so simple, I would never recover. The emotional abandonment and isolation that I would likely feel from being blocked from viewing fresh new content (especially from foreign content that can't be purchased unless I used a VPN or other sneaky tricks to go around the system -- Canadians love to pay for US-Only iTunes content), would probably force me to try another hobby. I'm at my entertainment peak right now, so I don't want to go back to the way things were before I discovered the pirate way of life.

    I'm not really sure what else needs to be said by yours truly about this topic, but in another 2 weeks, I might feel the need to confess even more sinful behaviour that can't really be defended.

    I still keep pinching myself to make sure all of this isn't simply a glorious dream I've been having while in a prolonged coma, but it appears that I'm actually wide awake (otherwise I would be sleep-posting) in a world where the Internet is at its peak, and the authorities are trying to pull the plug and regain control.

    Disclaimer: Downloading or streaming copyrighted material is perhaps more addictive than cocaine (have a coke and a smile) ... please do not try this at home ... that's what Public Libraries are for.


  7. #47
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    On the cutting edge ... Public Libraries fight the good fight against piracy!

    I'm back much sooner than I thought.

    Do you remember my Disclaimer from my last post? Well, somebody seems to have remembered it. Boom goes the dynamite!

    Disclaimer: Downloading or streaming copyrighted material is perhaps more addictive than cocaine (have a coke and a smile) ... please do not try this at home ... that's what Public Libraries are for.
    I like quoting myself ... it makes me feel like a real reporter (hello, Clark Kent).

    I'm not sure if the cable companies made a formal complaint to the libraries, or it's just a coincidence, but it appears that the Public Library loophole (at least for the big cities) is about to be blocked.

    Starting August 24 (yes, right after my last post -- coincidence? ... Maybe, but it is rather odd timing, don't you think?), some of the premium websites that allow downloading of copyrighted material are now disabled. The download restrictions may have begun shortly after my first post, but the implementation of them will be witnessed this week. How much longer will it take until I'm strip-searched or asked to pee into a cup? I guess it all hinges on this thread. If I think it ... it will happen. I'm going to win $5 million in the lottery (a man can dream, can't he?).

    Since I've always been good at finding cheap (think free) alternatives to whatever I'm currently interested in, I assume that my next hobby will be just as challenging to crack, but eventually I'll knock the walls down and then let the cat out of the bag after I've mastered it.

    I assume that Rogers, Bell, Shaw and the gang will still allow you to access the premium websites (even those with 10MB/sec downloads) from home, but at least if I was downloading about 10GB in 4 hours or less, Rogers, Bell, Shaw and the Gang would still get a cut (even if I was paying for Teksavvy's broadband service).

    Now that I've been reminded of how slow our Canadian channels are to bring high-quality US content to our TV screens, it's very hard to go back to the stone ages.

    Even watching something like Psych on Global will be a painful chore because the USA Network often adds a 30-second blooper reel (called Psych-Outs) to the end of some of the episodes (you can see some of them on YouTube). I like the psych-outs and since Global decided to skip airing In Plain Sight this week (I assume because of a glorious simsub opportunity), I just downloaded the last 3 episodes and then decided to see what Psych would look like on the USA Network. If Global hadn't bypassed an episode of In Plain Sight, I might have never realized that there were basically early looks at the Psych DVD blooper/gag reel (before the DVDs were even released) on many of the USA Network broadcasts.

    Streaming copyrighted material isn't really that big a deal because you can't stockpile an entire season of Anger Management and then take your sweet time to watch it (or god forbid let anybody else watch it with you -- don't worry Bell, I have no friends).

    It will be interesting to see if future episodes of Continuum will be streamable only from the Showcase website while at the library (since the majority of the sites might be blocked by the time it returns -- assuming of course that Showcase doesn't make another Endgame mistake and dump Continuum after one season). If I had a nickel for every mistake that Showcase makes (like airing encore programming before 9pm with bleeps -- hello Slings and Arrows and Billable Hours), I'd be rich enough to afford Rogers' broadband Internet service and download 20GB a day.

    I get a kick out of comparing US, UK and Canadian broadcasts of the same TV episodes (I tried it with Copper) and although I understand that no country wants you to have that kind of access to copyrighted material, it is quite interesting to actually have that opportunity even though my video cord has been cut. I also noticed that Zap2It lists Behind the Badge (Behind the scenes of Copper) as being broadcast by Showcase the week AFTER the first episode airs. Seems kind of weird ... considering I have the BBC America version of it and it mentions that the first episode will premiere Sunday August 19 (so it obviously aired before the first episode). The other odd thing is that the Behind the Scenes special is only about 22.5 minutes long, but Zap2It has it scheduled for an hour. Will Showcase add extra content? Perhaps, or maybe Zap2It has made two scheduling mistakes.

    I wasn't going to bother watching Copper, but it actually looks quite good (I just skimmed through it briefly to make sure everything was playable). Regardless, I assume that the Behind the Scenes episode of Copper might already be available on the Showcase website (or soon will be because I didn't spot it there yet ... unless my dial-up is too slow to show me that it's there) ... but why send me to the Internet even if it was all ready there? You know what happens when I use the Internet, right?
    [Copper needs some polish to bring out its shine]

    But because it debuts in the United States this weekend, Sunday, Aug. 19, on BBC America (why would Canada be later? That always bothers me), and there will be reviews aplenty from American critics, I thought I’d weigh in now with some general thoughts on the ambitious series.
    Copper airs in Canada later because the Americans might have first-run rights, or it just might be because Showcase assumes that Canadians don't really care as much as we do (after all, there's always something called the Internet ... although the Canadian Public Libraries might soon destroy that too).

    Now let me take a poke at the OTT (Over the Top) environment (hello, Netflix). You haven't truly cut the cord until you cut out Netflix, Hulu Plus, iTunes and any other service that you pay for.

    I didn't like episode 3 of Lilyhammer (Netflix series), so I didn't bother downloading any other episodes (I would have streamed it, but it's sometimes easier to download an exclusive item than it is to stream it), but the fact that even exclusive content is available for free (though often of poorer video quality) makes it even easier to cut the Netflix cord.

    Why pay for older content on Netflix when you wouldn't even be able to keep up with all the newer content that is available for free (not counting your Internet broadband monthly fee, of course) elsewhere?

    I'll tell you why it's worth paying for Netflix ... simply because you are rewarding a competitor that is giving "big Cable" a run for its money. Not only that, but you are letting the industry know that if the price is low enough, you're not always going to live the life of a pirate and fill your treasure chest with fresh new FREE content that you will NEVER have time to finish watching, even if you lived to be 100. Many Netflix subscribers are Pioneers ... not Pirates! I'm proud of you all! Keep up the good fight and say NO to Piracy and YES to last year's content (just like most of our Canadian channels do).

    Americans are even sharing their HBOGo passwords with friends and saving a fortune in cable fees; where there's a will, there's a way.
    [Hey, buddy ... what's your HBO password?]

    If you want to really make the BDUs squirm, you're going to have to also cut the Internet cord. If you don't, they will most likely get the last laugh.

    However, he who laughs last, quite often usually laughs best ... unless it's too late to get the last laugh because you already pilfered enough to last a decade ... yet another problem with allowing free downloads at local libraries.

    2012 is a huge year for the entertainment industry. will soon become and by the time 2013 rolls around, I'll be telling the other library patrons about the golden days of actually being able to download almost anything onto a USB thumb drive and then taking all the entertainment home with you.

    What will the future bring, you ask? Well, how about scanners that are able to erase any copyrighted material that you downloaded onto a USB or other storage device ... even as you walk into a Tim Hortons store to use the free Wi-Fi service.

    Ooh, that's vicious stuff ... but if you close your eyes and go to sleep for 5 years, you'll wake up in a whole new world. I pity the fool who spends 3 hours downloading copyrighted material, only to have it erased in a few seconds as he attempts to have a relaxing coffee break.
    [When cord-cutting is better than cable]
    [Cords Are For Cutting]
    [Cutting The Cord With A Dull Knife – The Counterpoint]

    [How Will Piracy Affect Public Libraries?]

    So, if the public library is to remain relevant and useful (and in existence!) it must seek to outsmart the pirates and offer services that cannot be replaced digitally. And most importantly, it must make these offerings widely known.
    Disclaimer: Piracy is too much fun to be legal. If you're warm and happy ... keep your mouth shut.
    [Quotes from the movie Assassins (1995)]

    Once upon a time, there was this little sparrow, who while flying south for the winter froze solid and fell to the ground. And then to make matters worse the cow crapped on him, but the manure was all warm and it defrosted him. So there he is, he's warm and he's happy to be alive and he starts to sing. A hungry cat comes along and he clears off the manure and he looks at the little bird and then he eats him. And the moral of the story is this: everyone who craps on you is not necessarily your enemy, and everyone who gets you out of crap is not necessarily your friend, and if you're warm and happy wherever you are you should just keep your big mouth shut.
    Last edited by PokerFace; 08-25-2012 at 04:36 AM. Reason: I like finding typos

  8. #48
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Cutting the cord is even easier to swallow when you add a DNS service

    By the way, if any of you do decide to ditch cable/satellite in favour of the Internet, you might be wise to read up on DNS vs VPN services. A DNS service seems to be the way to go and although there are many free VPN services out there that I know of, there might also be some good DNS freebies out there as well (although paying only $5/month for a premium DNS service seems like a pretty good deal to me).
    [DNS vs VPN services -- Sidestepping geo-blocking]

    If our Public Libraries' new stance on downloading finally pushes more people to add broadband Internet to their homes, adding a DNS service (or free VPN service) is the next step towards moving to a way of life that gives you even more freedom when you surf the Internet.

    It's clear to me that the Internet is too good to be true ... and yet it is true ... and unless it's eventually tamed ... you can continue to ignore the inane (and sometimes even insane) programming quirks of our Canadian broadcasters and thus continue to watch what you want, when you want to watch it.

  9. #49
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    After feeling the joy of having no Rogers bill for the last 2.5 months or so, I still think that Cable TV is an effective secondary tool that allows me to quickly sample some of the programming that I either missed (it's often harder to find fast download links for older programming -- no Torrents for me), or would normally ignore (flipping through TV channels is a good way to broaden my tastes and also find hidden gems), BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY, channel surfing through 40 to 50 channels is a mind-numbing and sometimes mind-stimulating venture that everybody should have access to when you don't feel like watching something specific.

    Unfortunately for me, I still think that paying more than $20/month for the privilege of channel-surfing is a bit too much to painlessly swallow (even if I had the money to burn), especially since I'll probably be paying about $40 month for unlimited broadband (which will hopefully be fast enough to avoid having to go to the library to get my daily fix of premium content), and of course never having enough time to watch even 40% of what I download each month. By the time I get around to watching some of my downloaded content, my USBs or harddrive may no longer work. Knock on wood ... ouch!

    I don't like the unpredictability of OTA broadcasts (especially using an indoor antenna), nor do I have enough recording devices to keep up with all of the content that I want to watch ... which is now the major reason that I will continue to download or stream the stuff that I want to watch, when I want to watch it.

    Oh, and if I could no longer watch all the fresh UK, Australian and New Zealand content that I'm currently enjoying from online sources (I love the accents and culture), I think I might have to cut my throat before I ever cut the online cord.
    Last edited by PokerFace; 10-05-2012 at 01:21 PM. Reason: typo

  10. #50
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    For whom the Bell tolls ...

    I finally made the move to unlimited High-speed Internet (about $40 for 6 MB/sec bandwidth -- using the Bell line in my home); there were many companies to choose from, but since I didn't want to pay an installation or sign-up fee (in case the service sucked), I decided to try one that I've never heard of. So far so good, but I'd rather pay $30/month for the same speed. I will keep my eyes open for an even better deal, but since I'm too busy trying to keep up with all the content that's now at my fingertips, I'll have to accept the fact that I'm being gouged because I live in Canada.

    After having dial-up Internet service since 1995, it's quite a jolt to suddenly be "connected" all the time.

    Since 5pm (after coming home from another library "session"), I've streamed and surfed a whole bunch and managed to even find time for a paltry 4.7 GB of home downloads (a drop in the bucket for me).

    I compared the stream of Animal Practice S1 E4 with my superior SD download (with the annoying NBC bug), but Global's stream wasn't good enough for me to get lost in the nonsense. There was no buffering, but the picture quality wasn't as good as I had hoped it would be ... at first glance the picture looked good enough, but after a few minutes I couldn't stand the way it looked.

    I'm not sure how long it will be so simple to get what I want from the net, especially since the war against the pirates is escalating, but I'm still not tempted to learn how to use the "illegal" torrent sites to make things perhaps even easier for me.

    When I talked to a few Bell employees about offering an affordable unlimited Internet service like the competition, I immediately got the cold shoulder and was told that they couldn't talk about it, and that was that. So sad.

    Now that I'm basically paying for my television content (about $40/month for my Internet connection), I don't feel like I'm getting anything for free. I don't really consider myself a cord cutter any longer, although technically as long as I'm not paying for cable tv, I'm still a cord cutter.

    I still find it amazing that I can now talk on the phone while I use the Internet ... and some people can even call me.

    While I was typing this post, I noticed that many of last night's shows have already been uploaded ... how will I ever find the time to watch them all? The simple answer is that I won't! Cue the violins.

  11. #51
    I VPN through my router for most of my shows now and can use many smart tv apps I couldn't before. I am ready to cut my satellite to skinny basic since I have no digital OTA or cable where I live.
    Thank you CRTC for forcing Bloat TV into offering low cost basic packages again.
    Last edited by HT Gearhead; 11-05-2012 at 08:36 PM.
    Not available on Bell TV
    Animal Planet HD
    Science Channel HD
    Speed HD
    Sun TV HD
    Cartoon Net HD
    Travel HD
    OLN HD
    AXS HD
    Encore HD
    Superbowl commercials
    Skinny basic Bell package and internet tv.
    Waiting for BluSky HDTV.....

  12. #52
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Icon7 I love downloading content, but streaming live events is also fun.

    After focusing on downloading for the first 2 weeks of my online service, I've now been seeking out more streaming options to broaden the scope of what I watch.

    Since Oct. 12th (5pm), I've used 280GB of bandwidth. I assume that 300-350GB will be my monthly usage, until I drop dead from lack of sleep.

    I can stream any sport I want, even all the NFL games as well as NFL Redzone, all for free (in crappy 360p or 270p, depending on the feed I use). After the live games end, I can also often watch the programming that comes on after it, like Inside the NBA (TNT), or Sportschannel NY content.

    ESPN 2, ESPN and NFL Network are also streaming for free, virtually 24 hours a day, as well as a bunch of other US and UK channels. There's too much to watch live, so I try to limit my live streaming to content that is too hard for me to find, or simply can't be downloaded without using torrents.

    Other than the sports stuff, most of the stuff I've been streaming can also be downloaded from many places, but I use the streaming to test out if a series is even worth downloading. I also come across a bunch of content on Yahoo/Youtube and Hulu (I still don't use a VPN for Hulu, I just use a chrome extension to fool Hulu into thinking I live in the States -- I assume it works like a DNS would) that I didn't even know existed ... semi-funny stuff like Burning Love and Escape My Life (both feature Natasha Leggero and are under 12 minutes in length). Cybergeddon with Missy Peregrym seems like I might like it, so I downloaded the 9 episodes.

    One of the reasons that I like streaming content from Hulu is that it has a neat feature called Face Match. It's not available for all the content, but I tested it out while I was watching Covert Affairs. I moved my mouse pointer to the face of any actor and then the screen freezes and lists the name of the character and actor playing the role, with a mini-bio listing some extra info like date of birth, etc, and then has a link for all of the other Hulu shows/episodes the actor can be seen in, as well as links to Wikipedia.

    By the way, when I was waiting for Escape My Life to start streaming on Hulu (just to compare the quality to youtube), they showed a commercial for the Lexus LS and there's also a Lexus sponsor box displayed under each episode, even though Escape My Life is a glorified commercial for the Ford Escape. Very odd, indeed.

    So, the value I get from the Internet, far exceeds what I could get from a BDU. However, since I generally only download the SD versions of the content I want (I only stream some HD content), the wait time isn't that long (about 20 minutes for a 700 MB, 90 minute movie).
    Warning: I'm not playing with a full deck.

  13. #53
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    I'm part of the 1.5% that Cable/Satellite companies lost last year

    Not much seems to have changed since my last post, but after about 6 months of using broadband Internet, my average daily download total is about 9.3 GB. I generally keep below 300GB per month, but still need at least a 330GB/month plan to be safe (though since I still have an unlimited plan, it doesn't really matter).

    The primetime Internet throttling by Canadian companies is now gone for the most part, so that usually reduces the wait time to download content with a slower 6M DSL plan (which is what I still use).

    There are still many things on Cable TV that I would still watch, but there are even more that can only be seen online (unless I'm willing to wait several months or years until some of the content perhaps airs in Canada).

    The only channel at the moment that I would miss if I couldn't already live stream it, would be CNN. Luckily, free live SD feeds of CNN are still available through a simple google search ... although I don't know how reliable the free streams would be if I wanted to watch them 24 hours a day. Some TV channel live streams work one day, but might not work the next day (for example, the free streaming feed of ESPN2 is currently offline, but I might be able to find a free ESPN2 stream via one of the other free sports links, however, I don't feel like playing the lottery right now).

    Surprisingly, DVDs and Blu-rays are still around (more than 50% of HMV Canada's recent sales come from them -- while 35% of its recent sales come from music), and since our Public Libraries still distribute them for free to content-hungry Canadians, it's hard to find the time to watch traditional television.
    [USA: Only 5% are cord cutters ... 95% still pay for Cable or Satellite service]
    [Canada: 1.5% cut the cord last year ... PokerFace is part of that 1.5%]

    Excerpts from the above linked article:

    While the country’s broadcast regulator has suggested that services such as Netflix are being used to supplement traditional cable, satellite and IPTV subscriptions, a new report from Convergence Consulting Group Ltd. suggests that about 1.5 per cent of Canadian TV subscribers cut the link last year, and the pace has picked up since 2011.

    Canadian companies such as BCE Inc. and Rogers Communications Inc. are still adding to their subscriber bases, but the rate of growth has slowed dramatically in the past year. Only 52,000 TV subscriptions were added in 2012, down 77 per cent from the year before, and bringing the total to 11.9 million households, according to the report released Tuesday.

    But traditional providers aren’t going to lose subscribers without a fight. With digital video recorders making it easier for viewers to control when they watch shows (Convergence expects 50 per cent of subscribers will have the devices by 2015, up from 40 per cent at the end of 2012), and a new emphasis toward restricting access to online viewing to paid subscribers, the companies hope to persuade viewers that subscriptions are worth the money.
    Last edited by PokerFace; 04-04-2013 at 05:51 PM. Reason: more than 50% of HMV Canada's recent SALES ( NOT profits) come from DVDs/Blu-rays
    Warning: I'm not playing with a full deck.

  14. #54
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Icon14 BNN spills the beans on geo-blocking

    Nothing new here, other than the fact I found it odd that Bell Media's BNN aired somewhat detailed information about how to circumvent geo-blocking on the GetConnected TV show (episode 1212 ... the first segment), that aired today.
    [GetConnected and sidestep geo-blocking]

    This kind of information is generally limited to forums, online websites like youtube, or the occasional newspaper article, however, this time the good old boobtube had some valuable information for newbies. In the past, GetConnected (produced by Blink Media Works) also explained how to jailbreak several media devices like the Boxee and AppleTV.
    Warning: I'm not playing with a full deck.

  15. #55
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Icon4 Premium content not yet yanked ... stream it while you can.

    It's not surprising to find copyrighted material on various download sites, but whenever I stumble across premium-channel content (in English) on youtube or dailymotion, it's worth mentioning, simply because I know it shouldn't be there. Besides, it certainly isn't illegal to stream it, so off you go:

    WARNING: Viewer discretion is advised.
    [Rogue S01 episodes]
    [Da Vinci's Demons S01E01 in English with French subtitles]
    Last edited by PokerFace; 05-11-2013 at 03:13 PM.
    Warning: I'm not playing with a full deck.

  16. #56
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Gillian Anderson's new UK series The Fall is currently airing on BBC 2 and RTE (Northern Ireland) and can be viewed for free on dailymotion (good picture) or YouTube (and various other places, as usual).

    Netflix USA begins streaming The Fall on May 28th. However, Netflix Canada shares the Canadian rights with an unknown Canadian broadcaster that has the first-window Canadian rights, while Netflix Canada only has the second-window Canadian broadcast rights. I'm not sure when it airs in Canada.

    The Rickey Gervais TV series Derek (BBC series) can also be seen for free on YouTube (even in HD), or you can wait until September 12th to stream it on Netflix Canada/USA.
    Warning: I'm not playing with a full deck.

  17. #57
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Just got my first Roku last week for the living room so the mrs and I can try it out, I will definitely get another one for the man cave now. This little box is awesome when you VPN and add Hulu plus with Netflix. Since then I've hardly watched satellite except for local news and weather. I can watch just about everything I like on Roku I used to pay Bell over 100 bucks a month for. The best part? NO MORE DAMN SIMSUBS! :) :)

  18. #58
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Got my Roku 2 XD a couple of weeks ago. My wife and I watch tv on it almost exclusively now, only turning on Bell for a handful of shows I have yet to find online through this great little box.
    The only downside so far is the limited PVR functionality on some apps, you can pause rewind fast forward but can't skip commercials. A minor annoyance for the content this device can offer with the right set up.

  19. #59
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    The Fall will have its Canadian broadcast premiere on Bravo Canada beginning in July (Sunday 10:15pm).

    I've also recently been streaming some content from the various Shaw websites and was pleasantly surprised by the experience. I'm getting used to ignoring the commercials and it's nice to know that if I've missed the live US streams or live OTA TV broadcasts for some of my desired content, I can always turn to the Shaw websites to bail me out.

    I don't expect to be able to have free access to Shaw's content forever, but at least for now, cord-cutters are still welcome. Shaw's specialty channels resemble OTA stations in the sense that they are free to view without the need of a cable/satellite subscription. Enjoy them while you can.
    [Are Internet cord-cutters really more common than Cable/Satellite TV cord-cutters?]
    Last edited by PokerFace; 06-11-2013 at 08:26 PM. Reason: typo
    Warning: I'm not playing with a full deck.

  20. #60
    Join Date
    Apr 2012

    Icon13 Ringing the Bell, but nobody's home yet.

    I noticed recently that Bell Media has stopped allowing early-bird (free) streaming for some of its online content.

    Dr. Marla & Friends
    and App Central used to be available for streaming just before they aired for the first time on BNN or CTV News Channel, but now it takes well into the next day (or perhaps the day after that?) until the newest online streams are made available.

    I know that having to wait until the next day is quite typical for official online content in Canada (and throughout the world), but not knowing exactly when the streams are going to be made available, makes it a bit less appealing.

    At least it's all still free.
    Warning: I'm not playing with a full deck.



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