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Television Media

Live Streaming Network TV Online - in Canada 120

Posted by Roblimo
from the suddenly-we're-all-Canadians-eh? dept.
ecampbel writes "News.com is running a story about a company called iCraveTV.com offering live streaming network TV feeds for Canadian Internet users (an area code is required to view the streams). Most of the stations offered are Canadian, but a few Buffalo, NY stations are offered as well. This is obviously the logical conclusion of streaming media, and is scaring the pants off the local network affiliates."
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Live Streaming Network TV Online - in Canada

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  • 1. Watch TV from work.
    2. If in Southern Ontario (where the channels originate), drop basic cable.
    3. Watch on your computer and not spend $100 for a converter.
    4. Watch on your computer without the need for a cable splitter/bunny ears.
    5. Hey its free and cool. Why not impress your friends?

  • I can watch local Buffalo news!! MORE FIRES IN CHEEKTAVEGAS!! :)

    Cool! Now you can play the "Buffalo House Fire Home Game"! Watch the local news. Try to guess which part of town tonight's house fire is in (eastside, southside, etc.) Bonus points for guessing the specific neighborhood/street ("An Allentown couple is homeless tonight after a two-alarm...")

    Don't forget the basic format: if two or more people died, it's the lead story; otherwise, it'll be the first story after the first break.

    I always thought that they should shoot for some sort of promotional tie-in - e.g., "Tonight's fire is brought to you by "First Alert" brand Smoke detectors..." or Diamond-brand matches, or...use your imagination! Think of the ad bucks!

    BTW, you aren't a true Don Cherry fan until you own and wear the entire Don Cherry ready-to-wear collection ;)
  • Hey!
    There's a whole other province in that area code!
    You have to watch out for these mainlanders :->)
  • Ummm... The area code prompt is not likely meant as a means to prevent them pesky Americans from invading the site and watching Canadian TV. More than likely, the company is using it as a quick way to gather demographic information about who is watching from where.

    Well, yes it probably does that, but rather than prevent pesky americans from watching Canadian TV, it's to prevent pesky Americans from watching AMERICAN TV. Network affiliates have broadcast exclusivity agreements in the areas they serve, and the NBC (for example) affiliates in Chicago, Miami, Dallas, etc., would be rather upset to learn that people were watching "E.R." on WGRZ Buffalo instead of their local stations.

    Living here in Buffalo, I'm probably safe--these are the channels I see anyway :), except that the PBS station is WNED, not WNEB. Anyway, why the hell would you all want to watch "AM Buffalo"?
  • Free as in beer = gratis; no price tag

    Free as in speech = unencumbered; open

    Free TV is free as in beer, but not free as in speech... i.e. I don't have to pay for it, but I can't put my own show on it unless I kiss some big-wig's ass or shell out big bucks.

    The Internet is free as in speech, but not free as in beer... i.e. I can put up my own page that can be accessed just as easily as anyone else's (the Internet's most important quality), but I have to pay for access.

  • >No Voyager and no Dilbert!
    Sounds more like a blessing than a curse.
  • Nice to do. When I checked it, I simply did a google search for Canadian Restaurants and got a list and went to a site and used their phone number's area code.
    I did restaurants cause they rarely have 800 numbers which screws it all up.
    Or maybe 800 is taken as *?
    And folks who criticize this guy for missing a few- sheesh, relax folks. He was being helpful, not slighting anyone. A lot of you \. readers could really use a case of those chill-pills. Or maybe they stopped production in 1994.
  • Finally, a way I can get my Hockey Night In Canada fix down here. The Hockey coverage on US TV really stinks. Sure there's lots of games, but the announcers, camera work and all the friggin graphics make it impossible to follow the game. Watch the old CBC and CTV feeds of Stanley Cup and Canada Cup games on ESPN Classic to see how Hockey was meant to be covered...
  • You'd be suprised just how much better. Shows like Kids In The Hall got away with more nudity and 'bad' language on their 9pm national broadcast than in their full length movie. That's what makes me laugh hardest about America. There's nothing like a country founded by Puritans, kill whoever you want but if you show a nipple or swear on TV, oh, the horror! I was glad to see that the South Park Movie made this point as well ;)

    Did anyone else notice in the latest TLC video Unpretty that when the breast implant is being removed from that woman that they actaully blurred the nipple? Watch closely and make sure to have pillows on the floor to soften the blow when you hit it laughing.
    If aspects of American culture like this weren't doing such a good job of seeping into our own, I wouldn't be so worried. But as it is, I'm terrified that the merchants to the south are going to totally supplant all world culture with their own. Hell, Disney owns the Mounties. And let's not talk about what's been done to hockey in the last 10 years alone.

    As for uncensored news coverage, how about non-sensational relavent news coverage? I'm continually impressed by the quality of the CBC newsgroup to report national and international matters that matter. If I see one more ABC/CBS/NBC news report confirming that the people on board the Egypt Air flight are STILL all dead, I'll scream. Why do they seem to think we need to know EVERY detail about something like this?

    And having watched MTV/VH1, I pitty you. MuchMusic actually plays _music videos_ on a regular basis! Imagine that! Anyway, I'm just passing on my own opinon and a little bit of experience having lived both on the border and away form it. If I wanted to really go hammer and tongs at the whole US-Canadian situation, I'd be here all day.

    Yes, we're kinda quiet, but you'd be supprised just what the average Canadian thinks about America. Yeah Canadian TV!
  • I canceled my cable a while ago, as there just wasn't enough on to justify the cost - currently my TV is pretty much a game console/DVD terminal.

    But, I have an ADSL connection - I just tried this out and most of the stations were very watchable. For the few times when I might want to watch something, this is good enough. In fact, all of the stations seem to me of better quality than my local TV reception.

    What I'm really looking forward to is other nations offering TV - think of how great this would be for learning other languages, if you could watch regional TV shows. I'm really looking forward to watching Japanese TV someday...

  • The American channels suck, agreed.

    • CBC - Add to the list of good shows:
      • Made in Canada - Rick Mercer plays a prick. It's great.
      • Newsroom - Very funny, Seinfeld fans would notice that "Lloyd Braun(sp?)" plays Jim, the idiot anchorman in it. I liked when they set up a camera to catch people getting hookers, and caught Jim...
      • Twitch City - Genius show about a couch potato. Stars Don McKellar (who did the excellent movie "Last Night") and Molly Parker.

    • Global - When I lived in Halifax, I didn't bother getting cable. Global was more than enough for me. They played American shows that I could handle, like Simpsons, South Park, and Mad TV. The Global stuff was good, too. I really liked Traders. Have you ever actually seen it? It's worth watching for Patrick McKenna, who played Harold in the Red Green Show, but isn't a geek there.

    Now that I'm back in Newfoundland (sadly), I don't get Global, but get most of my TV from the Comedy Network (American: Dennis Miller Live, John Stewart, Ben Stein, WKRP(!!), Canadian: Tom Green, Kevin Spencer ("he's a chain smoking, alcoholic, sociopath"), Butch Patterson: Private Dick ("Give me another drink or I'll slap you around like my prison lover"), Mike Bullard) and Teletoon (who, unfortunately, do not play "Late Night Anime" anymore, but still play Duckman, Spawn every Halloween, and the Canadian "Ned's Newt" (with jokes like, "Who's the man who's a machine to all the chicks" (It *is* a kid's show after all, they had to clean up that reference), and "That's brilliant, you're way too smart for the army, you're fired") and, of course, Splat!).

    Wow, I've got to give up with those damn parenthesis, I've been programming a little too long.

    I guess I'll go watch Win Ben Stein's Money, now...
  • Thanks for clearing things up ... I seriously feared that you might become a victim of corporate execs who will see people like you and then try to wipe you out and monopolize access to their content.

    It's actually very easy to do...
  • I think that this is a good step ahead for people to be able to acess things like TV for free (witch it should be anyways). My only major worry about this is what limits that the CRTC [crtc.gc.ca] will eventually put to this. We know how involved governments get into things that they shouldn't be involved in. And what about Telcos getting into the TV battle. Eventually NBTel [nbtel.nb.ca] is getting into the TV way of business by sending TV over the phone line. Chech out ImagicTV [imagictv.com] for more information on that.
  • Prince Edward Island, aka "THE Island" also uses 902.
  • Whoops, I should actually add something that I forgot to put in the first article.

    The percentage of revenue we're setting aside is being put into an account until the appropriate copyright bodies decide how payments of this nature should be made. When the decision is made, the funds will be released to the appropriate parties.

    ----
    Andrew McCallum / Technology Wrangler, iCraveTV.com

  • This is great.

    I decided that I didn't want to spend the $30/mo for cable, instead I got ADSL. I was left with 2 fuzzy channels I would get with an antenna here in Waterloo.

    Now for no extra cost, I have the selection of basic cable with the same quality I had before.

  • the problem isn't the streams, but the fact that the same stream is being borodcasted several times to the indivdual clients that wastes the bandwidth, that's what multicast aims to fix unfortunately multicast isn't available in most areas and the protocols are still being established.

    Basically though you're sending one stream to a 224.0.0.0 netmask and any client that wishes to retrive the stream simply adds that to it's multicast (or older cards go into promiscuous mode and use software to filter packets).

    Yes, you're still wasting bandwidth, but you're wasting less bandwidth.
    - MbM
  • ...that doesn't suck.

    Seriously, the current client is awful. On the same machine under WinNT the difference is astounding -- the Linux client is buggy, slow and just awful. Hopefully, Real will throw a little more money or open up the development of it a bit

    On the other hand, the Mac client is terrible, too. I guess that pretty much tells us that Win32 is their target market. :)

    It would be nice if someone (Apple) were to port QuickTime to Linux. They've already open-sourced the server to a degree, pity we can't get the client. I guess the copyright issues with some of the codecs are a problem, though.

  • SRC- French channel

    Actually, I'm a little suprised they didn't rebroadcast a few more of the French stations. I'm sure they'd garner a larger audience if "Bleu Nuit" was available daily. :)

    Either that, or their servers would get thoroughly tooled by the number of hits they'd get.

  • New $5,000 Multimedia Computer System [theonion.com]
    Downloads Real-Time TV Programs,
    Displays Them On Monitor

    The highly touted "Internet Revolution" took
    another major step forward Monday, when Compaq unveiled the
    breakthrough Compaq Presario 6000, a $4,995 multimedia
    computer system that enables users to download files containing
    network-television programs and display them on a computer
    monitor.

    "Imagine watching TV at the click of a mouse, instead of a
    remote control," Compaq director of product development Bill
    Welborne said. "With the Compaq Presario 6000 and a few
    reasonably priced add-ons, you'll never have to watch TV on a
    television again."
  • Regardless of the copyright law issue, this is great. I'm a former Torontonian now in Tennessee. Lets face it, I won't see any Leafs games on ESPN til playoff time. Only way I can currently keep on top of whats happening in Leaf-dom is via www.canoe.ca's hockey page [canoe.ca]. Now I'll be able to watch Don Cherry, Ron McLean etal on Hockey Night In Canada on CBC Toronto.

    Kudos to iCraveTV.com [icravetv.com] for this most excellent site.

  • I have heard this a lot of times in here. Free as in beer? What the hell does that means? Last time I checked beer was not free. Maybe there is a country where it is. Do any of you know which country so I can move there? Why pay for destroying my liver when I can do it for free?
  • Pfft. Why bother with the VC? Just go public. :)
  • I checked out the web site, and saw references to multicasting. I've heard of it before, but I know virtually nothing about it. Can some kindly soul provide me with information or useful thinks.

    Thankyaverramuchinadvance
  • Is Linda Pelligrino still on it? Wouldn't that be reason enough? =) Powers&8^]

  • This system is quite primitive compared to what's possible, but I'm going to have to use this as an opportunity to plug our site about the service we offer.

    http://www.kitv.co.uk

    If you live in Hull in the UK you can have it today but if you live in some backwater, you'll have to wait :)

    Kingston Interactive TV is delivered as IP over ADSL, it includes Interactive & Digital TV, Real Video on Demand, High speed Internet Access and a Local Link. This tech is amazing.

  • I grew up in a location where we could get Toronto, Hamilton, Buffalo, and Rochester TV stations. =) I grew up on Canadian Sesame Street because we didn't get good PBS reception. =) That's how I learned to count to 10 in French. =)

    Anyhoo, I think the real disappointment is that Buffalo doesn't have a UPN station. No Voyager and no Dilbert! =(

    Powers&8^]

  • >Don't forget the basic format: if two or more people died, it's the lead story; otherwise, it'll be the first >story after the first break

    In my house we've been playing for years... my parents didn't call Channel 7 "Blood and Guts" for nothing! I've always been a Channel 4 guy myself... dunno why...

    I guess I'm not a true Cherry fan then... Suits that don't allow me to sit down aren't my thing :)

    I think Powers would agree with me, Rochester news just doesnt have the same cheezy charm that the Buffalo newscasts do, they're way too bland... (Except R News, I watch that just for entertainment!)
  • Instead of complaining about this, local broadcasters need to be jumping on this chance. If they have a good format, people are going to watch them. If people watch them, then they have more viewers. If they have more viewers, then they get more advertisers. More advertisers means more money. The only real losers in this are the stations with poor formats and the cable company monopolies.

    There shouldn't even be a fear that the big broadcasting companies (ABC, CBS, Fox, et al) will steal viewers and revenue away from local stations. The local stations will still have the best base for running local news, sports, and any other local information that people will always want to see.

    This is also a much better way to see how many viewers are REALLY watching a particular show. Statistics are still statistics, and will always be open to interpretation and corruption, but checking the number of unique IP addresses that hit a show is much more likely to be accurate than a randum pole.

    Of course, the technology isn't prefect, and bandwidth sucks.. but every technology has to start somewhere.
  • Earlier today I crossed the Canadian border (into lower Ontario which uses the 519 area code) and checked out this site and I must say I'm very impressed. I suggested that they could pick up two more US affiliates (UPN and PAX) by setting up remote receivers in Windsor (across the Detroit R. from Detroit).

    I'd also like to note that the G2 player is available for Linux at the following site:

    http://proforma.real.com/real/player/linuxplayer.h tml

    The picture is more reasonable if you select the double size option.
  • Truthfully, I never noticed. Although now that I think about it, I think the newscasts do have a different flavor to them. I don't know whether I'd call it cheezy vs. bland, though. I think the differences simply reflect the slightly more blue-collar slant of Buffalo and the slightly more white-collar Rochester.

    *shrug*

    Powers&8^]

  • I'm pretty sure that Live Streaming Network Television has been commonplace for about 60 years.
  • Do they have uncensored news reports?
    How about full frontal nudity on broadcast?
    I can't think of anything else that would be
    worthwhile to watch.
  • Something I just don't understand here. Why should the networks care about the rebroadcast? They make money off of advertising; as a result, if their viewer base increases (and they have some way to monitor it), then their ad revenues should increase. If they could get iCraveTV to send them viewership numbers (to forward to their advertisers), then it seems to me this would be a *good* deal.

    This reminds me of something my hometown radio station did... they started webcasting a few months ago, but introduced a 45 second delay so that people wouldn't be able to call in on the contests. Why not? Isn't the purpose of the contest to get more people to listen in? And since they know how many people are listening to the webcast (and can pass it on to their advertisers, same story as above), isn't that all good for them?

  • Very useful. BTW, add 613 on there for Ottawa's area code.

    Hrm... I have realplayer in my netscape prefs, or 'realplay' anyway- whats the variable to pass the file labelled as?

    Come on all you netscape 4.7 linux users.... someone look in your application prefs. :)
  • I'm sure those folks don't give a rat's ass as
    to whether or not we watch their TV. The problems
    they have are the mother fuckers in Ottawa and
    Washington who can't get to an agreement on
    US and Canadian culture content.

    The CRTC and FCC prohibits us from watching
    each other's TV.

    I asked a few days ago to dish if they plan
    on providing us the French lineup of ExpressVU
    and I was told that the FCC prohibits them from
    doing so. They would love to sell me the service
    but they can't legally do it. You can still
    subscribe to expressvu if you have an address
    in Canada and are billed there but if they
    ever find out that you actually live in the US
    they cut you off. Not that they would not want
    to sell you the service but because the
    governments forbid it.

    In this case, the arguments about the local
    stations don't hold water as there are no
    French language stations in the USA.

    Dish would provide me with one French station
    (TV5, international TV) for the price of all
    of the Canadian French language network at
    expressvu.


  • by bbcat (8314)
    They are on the net, accessible in the US in
    case that you wouldn't know.

    The FCC does prohibit us from receiving
    Canadian TV except what we could get off the
    air.

    I think it has a lot to do with getting back
    at Canadian cable TV who steals signals from
    the USA and black out the US commercials to
    put canadian commercials.

    The internet may force the two groups of morons
    in Ottawa and Washington to remove the stupid
    border in the TV industry.

  • ...a poor, student Canadian who can barely afford the neccesities of life (tuition, rent, food, transit pass, cable modem), I LOVE this. I can't afford my net access AND TV, so of course I get net. As near as I can guess, the Canadian government WON'T try to barge into this, and may actually support iCrave if they start getting hammered by legal problems.

    The Canadian gov't, you see, has recently begun efforts to make Canada more high-tech, and iCrave is a very firm response to these efforts. Since our legal system has so much power, and since most of our judges favour the current government and its stances, there's a good chance that, even if iCrave does get sued, it'll survive.

    Hopefully, this will start a trend, or rather reverse the current one; Canada's been bleeding technology companies for a few years now, and the ones that remain are looking at nicer tax regimes (i.e. Nortel, interviewed in National Post as saying that Canadian taxes are driving them out).

    I would wager that iCrave, if they play their cards right, will survive and thrive. I hope so, mainly for my sake. I've been missing my Air Farce and This Hour for far too long now, and I don't want to have to give them up again.

  • I could be wrong, but I think as long as network TV remains completely free (as in beer), it'll stick around for a while.

    Online streaming media still requires an internet connection.

  • This maybe sucks a little bit too much bandwidth in the present Internet, but it is a nice idea for the future.

    Where I live we get a whole range of Canadian stations on cable (BCTV (Vancouver), ITV (Edmonton), CTV (Toronto), and NTV (Newfoundland)): what's nice about that is because of the wide timezone spread (-3:30 to -8:00 from GMT) we have the ability to watch Star Trek (or B5 for you Babylonians) at virtually any hour of the day...
    --

  • by melanarchy (109486) on Friday December 03, 1999 @02:37AM (#1485236) Homepage
    The site requires area codes to watch from east to west candaian area codes are:
    506 418 819 450 514 705 807 204 306 403 780 250 604 403
  • What are the regulatory issues associated with this?
    Any thoughts on how this relates with Video on Demand?
  • I've been watching it for a couple of days and I don't see that the networks have anything serious to worry about. As the article states the picture quality is not very good, its a small area of real estate on your screen, and it cuts in and out every few minutes when there is network congestion.

    Having said that I do find it useful to keep a news broadcast going in the corner but actually watching my favourite sitcom is out of the question. The TV is here to stay for awhile I would think until streaming media catches up in quality.
  • by Dacta (24628) on Friday December 03, 1999 @02:46AM (#1485239)

    Someone should invent something that would transform these signals to analouge and then transmit them using a wireless mechanism and RF Modulation.

    Then cheap, monitor like boxes could be built with the wireless networking gear built into them, and the cost of the service to consumers could be paid for by advertising.

    Of course, we might have a problem with competing standards - maybe the W3C could come up with something..

    Hmmm... I might just seek some VC finance..

    Hmmmm... now wait a moment.. I remember something like that from back when I was young..

    ;-)

  • I almost feel like a warez kiddy...

    Some Canadian Area codes are:

    450,416,250,604,709,905,613

    Don't break the law. *grin*

    ------
  • That's the most useful information I've come across all day. I was hoping someone would post these so I didn't have to go hunt them down.

    Thank you.
  • Their security sucks big time!

    Goto their page: http://www.iCraveTV.com/tv/watch.html [icravetv.com]

    Click on a link. Look at the url, should look like this:
    http://www.iCraveTV.com/tv/c1.php3 ?u=T41ciii.ram [icravetv.com]

    Change that to:
    http://www.iCraveTV.com/tv/T41ciii.ram [icravetv.com]

    Voila! Live TV :)
  • by Imperator (17614)
    Just what I've always wanted! Small, grainy, low-resolution images designed for a TV audience. Way to stick it to The Man! We'll get our low-brow entertainment whether we own a TV or not.
  • Their security sucks big time!

    Goto their page: http://www.iCraveTV.com/tv/watch.html [icravetv.com]

    Click on a link. Look at the url, should look like this: http://www.iCraveTV.com/tv/c1.php3 ?u=T41ciii.ram [icravetv.com]

    Change that to: http://www.iCraveTV.com/tv/T41ciii.ram [icravetv.com]

    Voila! Live TV :)
  • C'mon you're telling me you're going to runaway because of the current performance for web video. Hello? Every new technology has to catch up with the old especially when the basis of that tecvhnology is extremely widespread and heavily tapped to such an extent that all new technologies have an uphill battle.


    I mean c'mon, do you watch TV for content or do you flip channels to find the clearest one. Or to put thiungs into perspective. How many people here buy linux/bsd for the install routine as opposed to using it. Raise your hands (journalists put your hands down unless you use it not install at home.)
  • The only advantage I see here is the ability to pull in foreign networks, and the vast majority of people simply aren't going to be interested in that. If people (like me) really want to watch TV feeds on their computers, they're going to spend the ~$100 bucks and buy a TV Tuner. Think about it...the full range of channels, a scaleable image without loss, no intermittent feed interruptions, and you're not wasting any bandwidth. I just can't see the mass market appeal here...
  • by legoboy (39651) on Friday December 03, 1999 @02:49AM (#1485247)
    Is that all you yanks can now see how awesome Hockey Night in Canada (on CBC) really is.

    Tune in at 7:00 eastern on Saturday night for the Toronto Maple Leafs vs. Pittsburgh Penguins from Toronto, and at 10:00 eastern for the Vancouver Canucks at the Edmonton Oilers.

    Like the t-shirt says: Hockey is Life.

    ------
  • What security were you expecting?

    You're asked to enter a Canadian Area code. These aren't exactly top secret.

  • How do you get BCTV and NTV? They're regional networks at opposite ends of the country! I wanna know where you are.

    By the way, CTV is not a Toronto network, it's nation-wide.

  • Forget AM Buffalo... I can watch local Buffalo news!! MORE FIRES IN CHEEKTAVEGAS!! :)

    Seriously, also being at RIT like Powers, and being orignally from Buffalo, it's nice to get the local news and be able to watch CBC. Don Cherry is my man... :)
  • Free as in beer means that the product costs nothing to you (just think of women at bars and you'll get the picture).

    The more important freedom is free as in speech. That you should have a right to see the source code of the program you are using, and adapt it to what you want. This is the main point of GNU (as far as I can tell).

    The two are often contrasted when discussing the difference between certain companies giving products away 'for free' and things produced under a license such as the GPL (ie free as in beer good, free as in speech better).

    At least that's my take on it.

  • This is because stations such as YTV are cable stations. The ones offered by IcraveTV are the local tv stations. If they were to offer cable stations they would probably have to a) get permission and b) pay the stations for the right to rebroadcast

    Otherwise i'd be able to watch champions league soccer on TSN from work instead of settling for a java superticker :)

  • There may not be an obvious appeal, but the reason the NAB has been dreading this day is because it allows people to bypass their local monopolies when receiving network feeds. As it is now, you cannot legally receive distant networks if you are within range of a local broadcaster (70 miles I believe). Your local CBS has decided to stick a college basketball game on during your favorite program? Tough, nothing you can do about it since you only have 1 CBS station. Your house is next to a giant power station or some other source of interference? The only way you'll be getting television programs is by paying the local cable-opoly. People on the outskirts of the range also sometimes have no cable company serving them and also may not get a very good feed from a rooftop antenna. Get a satellite dish you say? Sure, but no networks for you unless the local stations are feeling generous and will grant a waiver. Granted, the ability to receive poor transmissions of a couple of Canadian stations may not be very appealing now, but it is a start to a whole new ballgame. AOL is salivating over this ability for a very big reason and fought very hard to be sure this ability wasn't outlawed in the recent satellite TV bill that passed. Imagine the day where the technology allows you to receive full-screen, 30fps pictures of any channel in the world.
  • I thought tv shows were 45-min-that-lasts-an-hour.

    IIRC, there's a law somewhere (maybe just a CRTC regulation), that you cannot have any more than 15 minutes worth of advertisement in an hour.

    Your post could have been sarcastic, but if it was, I didn't pick it up.


  • [Note: this is speculative fiction]

    The American Broadcasting Company (ABC), a has obtained an injunction against Ontario, Canada-based iCraveTV, in Canadian court, which forces a temporary end to iCraveTV's practice of rebroadcasting ABC television feeds.

    In addition, ABC Networks is suing iCrateTV for $400 million in damages, calculated by the estimated loss in profits caused by millions of users viewing ABC Network broadcasts over the Internet for free. iABC, the video-over-ip service inaugurated in June 2000 by ABC, charges $25 per month for accounts by which registered viewers can watch video feeds online.

    The damage estimate may in fact be raised, as ABC Networks has issued a subpoena for iCraveTV's access logs, which are said to indicate that at least 10 million people were using their service, per month, by August.

    NBC and CBS are also following suit against iCraveTV, but the whole issue may already be moot. iCraveTV's network has been overwhelmed by the vast numbers of users attempting to connect to their network for free. The cost of providing the video-over-ip service has exceeded the profits gained by over 100 advertisers, and with the legal action from ABC Networks, iCraveTV's stock has lost $12 3/4 shares, down from $23 3/4 to $11 per share as of Tuesday.

    With the apparent fall of iCraveTV, ABC Networks says iABC has secured the right to sole distribution of ABC content over the internet. The decision against iCraveTV is also being hailed as the fall of the last barrier to phasing out dependency upon some local TV stations.

    Also, the fee increase for iABC accounts, from $25 to $35, originally announced in December, will take effect in February.
  • Multicasting utilizes IGMP [isi.edu] to setup a 'broadcast' that is limited in scope. That is to say that users have to 'tune in' to the multicast by 'joining' the IGMP group. This is handled by routers that must be multicast aware, i.e. have a decent IGMP v2 implementaion. The commodity internet is not multicast enabled, but you can tunnel into the Mbone. Also for those of us fortunate enough to have access to vBNS or Abilene these networks are already multicast enabled.

  • In the article, they say they could rebroadcast for free any "PUBLIC" tv stations.

    So anything that you can receive on an antenna is OK. Cable only channel are not.

    Anyway, I should not complain 'cause I have a TV tuner.


  • did they move the link?
  • Firstly, it's amazing to see this pop up on Slashdot. I knew it was going to be big, but to actually see it realized is quite amazing. I actually tried to plug Slashdot a bit during our press conference by bringing it up on the screens while I demonstrated how the player worked. Dunno if it got on any stations, but I thought it would give some a chuckle. :) Omitted from some press reports, but included in others, is the fact that from revenue dollar one, iCraveTV is paying segregated funds, a percentage of revenue, to be distributed to all rights holders by industry-approved copyright collectives. Also, it should be noted that iCraveTV has repeatedly stated its intentions to work with content providers of video, ecommerce, etc. Broadcasters have been loosing market to the Internet for the past 5 years, and not only is iCraveTV helping them to recover some of the market to the benefit of program producers and advertisers as well as broadcasters, it is also creating a significant new market for all manner of content creators. Let's give this convergence thing a Terrance and Phillip-style kick in the ass, eh.

    ----
    Andrew McCallum / Technology Wrangler, iCraveTV.com
  • 709

    Just to add another one.
  • NASA is using multicast on a private Internet to distribute spacecraft data to end users. This allows the use of COTS (commercial, off the shelf) networking hardware and software instead of proprietary protocols and systems. The ground station that receives spacecraft data transmits a single stream of multicast UDP packets. Multicast enabled IP routers split the single stream into multiple streams as needed. This allows efficient use of the bandwidth on the network backbone.
  • I've become a fan of iCraveTV.com because just today I watched Chasing Amy on CityTV, which we don't get over here in Edmonton.

    Cool movie... heh
  • I have yet to find a version of real player g2 for Solaris (what I am running at work), or linux(which I am running at home). I do have a copy of Winblows 98 at home, but the 56k connection there will probably leave something to be desired in the quality department.
  • I am a Canadian who lives in the states. I grew up in the Toronto area. I miss not only Hockey Night in Canada with Don Cherry but I also miss City TV (my top pick of the channels available) and I miss some of the stupid commercials which only make sense to to the locals. I was stunned to be able to watch my home TV over the internet in relativly good quality (internet wise). I was just checking out late great movies on city. They were playing something about mary. I didn't want to the movie over realplayer due to the poor quality but I would gladly watch/LISTEN to hockey and the commercials for local flavour. I doubt this is something that will take the world by storm but it will allow people to watch/listen to their favorite (home) stuff no matter where they are. This is great! Oops did I break a law?! ;-)
  • I live in Toronto so I compared the streaming CityTV to the real thing on the TV across the room from my comp. Besides a delay of about a minute, and the fact that it's 1/8 the size of my TV, the quality isn't too bad(on ADSL connection). It'll be nice to have when I'm living in residence again in January and no longer have access to a TV. And remember - ST:TNG reruns every day at 11:00AM! It's just what we've always dreamed of - Star Trek available wherever you are!
  • You'd be suprised just how much better. Shows like Kids In The Hall got away with more nudity and 'bad' language on their 9pm national broadcast than in their full length movie. That's what makes me laugh hardest about America. There's nothing like a country founded by Puritans, kill whoever you want but if you show a nipple or swear on TV, oh, the horror!
    Did anyone else notice in the latest TLC video Unpretty that when the breast implant is being removed from that woman that they actaully blurred the nipple? Watch closely and make sure to have pillows on the floor to soften the blow when you hit it laughing.
    If aspects of American culture like this wasn't doing such a good job of seeping into our own, I wouldn't be so worried. But as it is, I'm terrified that the merchants to the south are going to totally supplant all world culture with their own. Hell, Disney owns the Mounties. And let's not talk about what's been done to hockey in the last 10 years alone.
    As for uncensored news coverage, how about non-sensational relavent news coverage? I'm continually impressed by the quality of the CBC newsgroup to report national and international matters that matter. If I see one more ABC/CBS/NBC news report confirming that the people on board the Egypt Air flight are STILL all dead, I'll scream. Why do they seem to think we need to know EVERY detail about something like this?
    And having watched MTV/VH1, I pitty you. MuchMusic actually plays _music videos_ on a regular basis! Imagine that! Anyway, I'm just passing on my own optinon and a little bit of experience. If I wanted to really go hammer and tongs at the whole US-Canadian situation, I'd be here all day.
    Yes, we're kinda quiet, but you'd be supprised just what the average Canadian thinks about America. Yeah Canadian TV!
  • The internet may force the two groups of morons in Ottawa and Washington to remove the stupid border in the TV industry.

    I'd like to believe that, too, but we should never underestimate the power of stupidity. If only we could harness it, we'd have an incredible free energy source!

  • by Kajakske (59577)



    =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
    Belgium HyperBanner
    http://belgium.hyperbanner.net
  • The TV stations being broadcast by iCraveTV [icravetv.com] sent a "cease and desist" order. iCraveTV is ordered to cease broadcasting at 5pm today; hoever, iCraveTV sez they won't do it. Some relevant articles:

    National Post general story [nationalpost.com]

    NFL tells iCraveTV to back off [nationalpost.com]

  • On Internet, we have already low-quality advertisments, low-quality art, low-quality radio and low-quality video. Now the great time comes for low-quality TV! Wow.

    Excuse me my sarcasm. It's just that inspite that the bandwith is growing, the connections are getting slower - at least where I work. Getting short, simple pages from US lasts longer and longer. It's the same phenomenon that makes each new version of Windows slower in spite of more powerfull computers. Quality does not improve: only the number of gadgets. I'd rather see quick loading of a page without even pictures than a java-live-video-audio-whatever-overloaded page which takes two hours to load.

    When I think about it... it's like with buying a new back-pack. You had one which had 60 liters, and it was too small. Then you buy one with 100 liters, and it's still too small - but much heavier then the first one. The same goes for cars. And apartments. And benches in a lab. And money. Woah, I think it's a hardwired feature! I wouldn't be amazed if they found it on the 22 chromosome...

    Regards,

    January

    P.S. It's not a flame. It's a joke.

  • And what happened to 902? (AKA anywhere in nova Scotia)
  • "If you sat there and looked at this full frame, I think you ought to be put in an asylum," Craig said, noting that the picture quality is nowhere near a regular TV signal. "But if you sit and look at it at a small size, then it's very watchable."

    Bwahaha! Too bad the proceedings that determine whether US companies can do the same thing aren't jury trials; I figure this one quote would go a long way towards getting approval passed. :) I still have no urge to watch TV, even streamed to my computer, but I figure if the broadcaster providing the feed to the site doesn't have a problem with their content being rebroadcast, then the industry in general should just stay out of it. Hell, you'd think that they would support it... "And not only will your ad run during the widely acclaimed TV show, Another Bunch Of Teens in a House, but it will be seen by thousands more bored netheads tuning into Rebroadcast.com!"

    Deosyne
  • by Plasmic (26063) on Friday December 03, 1999 @02:55AM (#1485277)
    Here are some links for those of you who don't like area codes and don't like license agreements. Obviously, people from countries other than Canada are going to view these streams, regardless of anything anyone posts, so you might as well be able to do it easily:

    NBC [icravetv.com]
    NewVR [icravetv.com]
    CBC [icravetv.com]
    Global [icravetv.com]
    ABC [icravetv.com]
    CTV [icravetv.com]
    OnTV [icravetv.com]
    PBS [icravetv.com]
    TVO [icravetv.com]
    SRC [icravetv.com]
    CTS [icravetv.com]
    CFMT [icravetv.com]
    WB [icravetv.com]
    CITY [icravetv.com]

    I must say that watching people argue on some crazy talk show in French is rather humorous.
  • As a resident of Cole Harbour, NS, I was wondering the same thing.
  • Or does Canadian TV *seem* to have even more commercials than the 35-min-show-that-lasts-an-hour US?

    Just an observation ;)

    Seriously, though, I tried this out, and it's pretty cool. Low-quality video, but what do you expect from RealVideo? Obviously it's no competition for "real" TV yet, but it's kinda nice to be able to run on a machine that doesn't have a TV card, but does have a cable modem.

    I've been connected for about 20 min now without a hiccup - then again, it's not 8am EST yet either...the real test will be to see how it runs from the flaky LAN at work.

    I'd much rather have a TV card, or even better a TV within viewing distance of the comp - but this is pretty cool nonetheless.
  • Serves them right for keeping me (and many others) from getting network access via C-Band. These small stations need to realize that it's Darwinian. Spend the bucks to keep up or get out of the business.
  • I just had a look at the site, and was shocked that they don't include YTV in their lineup. They show great stuff on that channel, (Reboot, Shadow Raiders, Dragon Ball Z, etc). It is the only reason that I bother to pay for cable.

    Mark
  • The author of the original piece thought that this is the logical conclusion for streaming media, however I disagree with that. I feel that this is just the start of a new kind of broadcast service, that in the not to distant future will fuse together with other net technoligies and form the greatest evolutionary change to TV since the cathode ray tube. Soon, TV will no longer be a flat, 2 dimensional, one way medium, it will have the community spirit of the web along with the interaction to keep people's attention.....I can't wait :-)
  • Does streaming make sense? What kind of bandwith would this really require? Real Audio is rude enough with it's packets already, I shudder to think how nasty Real TV will be. Should this kind of traffic be allowed?

    This junk should be seperated. A couple of years ago people got upset by the first streaming video's, like Iguana TV. Is anyone else still outraged? The average US house has a TV blaring in the conner that no one really watches. People just have it to keep themselvs company. I don't want that kind of junk slowing down legitimate content and hope it can be kept off.

  • by RedX (71326)
    You apparently aren't aware of the bill [usatoday.com] that was passed last week that allows the satellite companies (DirecTV and Dish at least) to carry offer local networks to residents in select cities. For instance, DirecTV now offers the New York networks to New York customers over their DirecTV receiver and LA networks to LA customers. More cities are on the way and Dish is offering a similar service. It doesn't do much for people is smaller cities whose networks DirecTV and Dish won't be carrying since you still can't legally receive a network from another city if you are in the Grade B countour. It also allows people outside of the Grade B countour to receive the national network feed from NY or LA, depending on time zone.
  • I wonder how this will fare, given how well the satellite TV industry has done against Congress.

    I think you're missing the point that this company is Canadian, not from the USA. The US congress has no say in the matter.

  • Normally you get TV through cable.
    I get internet through cable.
    I then get TV through internet at a much lower quality.
    Therefore I get TV the normal way through cable, but at a much lower quality.
    Also, this way it can never match the quality of normal TV because it is using less of the cable from further away, in a stranger way.

    Also, what is with that WebTV? Do people get internet through cable on their TVs?

    "I ran a virus check on my computer and it removed Windows"

  • I was at home for a few days this summer and discovered that Irv was retiring! Can you believe it? The end of an era in Buffalo.

    Not that I care; I'm a Rochestarian now. =)

    Powers&8^]

  • Does it deliver closed captioning? Sometimes the audio is less than perfect.

    "If a packet hits a pocket on a socket on a port
    And the bus is interrupted and the interrupts not caught
    Than the socket packet pocket has an error to report"
    Traditional programmer's nursery rhyme

  • Thus when showing US material something has to be added to cover the missing US commercial spots - the most famous filler being "Bob & Doug MacKenzie" which got started this way.
  • Another know if there is a VCR being made for this, for RealPlayer?

    " Computers have really changed the world,
    In the past people would tar and feather
    Now they tar and zip "

  • If I am at home, I would much prefer to watch a real TV ... But this is quite nice for when I am at work (with our T1), trying to finish up some stuff, but I want to catch a show ...

    Unfortunately, daytime TV pretty much sucks no matter where you watch it (unless you are a fan of children's programming or those trashy talk shows)! Actually, now that I think about it, that is probably a Good Thing - I don't really need another distraction during my work day! :-7

    YS
  • by wowbagger (69688)
    I wonder how this will fare, given how well the satellite TV industry has done against Congress.


    For those of you who don't own sat dishes, here's the deal in brief: In the Good Old Days, the owner of a C-Band dish (big dish, not the little mini dishes like Primestar) could subscribe to stations like the Denver 5, and receive NBC/CBS/ABC via sat. Nice clean picture, the best you're going to get via NTSC. Also, if you lived in a time zone other than the origionating station, you gained another chance to watch your favorite show.


    Then the cable cabal and the networks banded together, and managed to push the Satellite Home Viewers Act through. Now, if you are in what the FCC calls the "Grade B contour" (read: crappy, ghost-ridden image 80% of the time, nothing 20% of the time) of a local station, you are forbidden by law to receive network programming from satellite unless your local station provides you with a wavier. Yeah, and Mr. Gates will let vendors install Linux next to Win-98.


    Given this, I wonder how long the networks will allow Webcasting to go on before they push for an amendment to the SHVA to cover this.


    Just like Microsoft and NSI, the networks don't want to see their monopoly end, and just as assuredly, end it must due to technology.

  • I wonder how this will fare, given how well the satellite TV industry has done against Congress.

    [...] I wonder how long the networks will allow Webcasting to go on before they push for an amendment to the Satellite Home Viewers Act to cover this.

    I don't see what US law has to do with it.
  • Ummm... The area code prompt is not likely meant as a means to prevent them pesky Americans from invading the site and watching Canadian TV. More than likely, the company is using it as a quick way to gather demographic information about who is watching from where. Of course, that information is pretty much useless to them now that there are all these area codes being posted on Slashdot... by now, their database probably indicates that there's a high percentage of Americans living in Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver and Innuvik. :)
  • If the bandwidth issue makes backbones & ISPs upgrade ancient links to newer, faster ones, I'd say watch all the TV you can!

    Better yet, it might force them to switch to multicasting, with QoS support. Can you imagine an ISP with -modern- networking facilities?

    I'd love it if this spreads to the USA and Europe. Massive network grey-outs, resulting in Big Companies leaning on the ISPs & backbones to supply a decent service for a change, with backup routes, multicasting, RSVP, CBQ, RED and ECN. The luxury!!!

  • by RNG (35225) on Friday December 03, 1999 @03:33AM (#1485296) Homepage
    Hmm, now we'll have the TV industry wake up to the same threat the music industry is facing now. Not that the concept is not obvious (after all, at a low level everything is just a stream of 0s and 1s), but this must be a red flag in their face.

    Much as we needed the recording industry over the past 50 years to press those damn CDs/Records and distribute them, we're currently relying on the TV studios and networks to make/distribute their products. Also witness the current TV climate: much as the recording industry creates their own hypes and ignores non-conventional artists, the TV (and movie) industry is falling victim of their own success. Their desire to standardize everything and make it 'safe' for (their) ideal targe audience (families with kids, etc) results in a product which excells in conformity and blandness.

    Given this, advances in technology which make it possible to distribute (and eventually produce) decent quality TV programs at low costs, will lead to the proliferation of 'independant' studios. With their monopoly on creation/distribution of movies vanishing in internet time, the TV studios will eventually face the same tide the music industry is facing now: We don't really like them, we don't really need them anymore; let's move to a medium we can control and just ignore the studios. Looking at the sad state of the (currently +- 30) TV stations I get via cable, this may just be good ... if nothing else, this means that as an independant producer you will be able to distribute your films to anyone who's on the internet. Wether anyone will care to watch your stuff is of course an entirely different matter.

  • 506 418 819 450 514 705 807 204 306 403 780 250 604 403

    I think you're missing a few... 613 519 905 416... what'd ya do, skip Ontario?

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