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LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 12:55 AM Jan 2024

How do you consume "television"?

Last edited Sat Jan 6, 2024, 02:10 AM - Edit history (1)

I read an article today about how subscription television is bleeding out subscribers and is no longer the dominant model. I got wondering how DU folks get their TV. (I’m streaming only with zero consumption of live broadcast-type TV. Have been since the aughts.)

NOTE: This poll isn’t asking how much TV you watch, just how you watch it. I don’t watch much at all, but when I do, it’s streaming.

Defining some terms as I use them here:
Streaming: Use streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, library apps such as Kanopy or Hoopla, etc. to watch films or TV shows over the internet, on demand (no set schedule, mostly). You could be watching content from these services via a Roku, FireStick, AppleTV, or simply on a computer or internet-connected television.
Live TV addon: View live broadcast events and shows (local news or spores, e.g.) at scheduled times over the internet via your streaming service. Examples are Hulu +Live and YouTube TV.
Traditional reception: Use a digital antenna to watch locally broadcast TV channels without cost or subscription. This is the way we watched TV before the invention of cable TV.

Added definition
Television: Programming, not the device. You could watch “television” programming on your phone or computer, or a game console.


104 votes, 0 passes | Time left: Unlimited
Streaming only (no live TV addon, no "traditional" reception via antenna)
27 (26%)
Streaming with live TV addon and/or traditional reception via antenna
28 (27%)
Streaming AND cable or satellite subscription
31 (30%)
Cable or satellite subscription only (no streaming services)
8 (8%)
I don't watch TV at all but I watch films at home (via DVD or other physical media)
2 (2%)
I don't watch TV or films at home
5 (5%)
Other (Please explain in the comments)
3 (3%)
Show usernames
Disclaimer: This is an Internet poll
53 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
Highlight: NoneDon't highlight anything 5 newestHighlight 5 most recent replies
How do you consume "television"? (Original Post) LearnedHand Jan 2024 OP
I'd love to stream some motherfuckingsomething... jcgoldie Jan 2024 #1
Yup I'm rural too but I have StarLink LearnedHand Jan 2024 #3
i dont blame you jcgoldie Jan 2024 #8
Hahah I did that too LearnedHand Jan 2024 #14
Yikes! 2naSalit Jan 2024 #13
Welcome to "Can't Do" U.S.A. hunter Jan 2024 #28
I joke with my wife jcgoldie Jan 2024 #36
I've had the same experience in the Caribbean and remote-ish places in Europe LearnedHand Jan 2024 #39
Thanks to the analog to digital conversion, Ms. Toad Jan 2024 #2
I despise Eloon Musk but StarLink is a phenomenal service LearnedHand Jan 2024 #4
AT&T is the only internet service we have in our area. n/t Ms. Toad Jan 2024 #6
Hmmm did you check the StarLink availability map? LearnedHand Jan 2024 #9
Looks like the Sells, AZ area reservation is not getting the service Attilatheblond Jan 2024 #43
Yup I was in one of those dark blue hexagons for quite a while LearnedHand Jan 2024 #45
thanks for replying Attilatheblond Jan 2024 #48
I meant to say I'm glad the digital antenna works for you LearnedHand Jan 2024 #5
The digital antenna does NOT work for us. Ms. Toad Jan 2024 #7
Oh sorry I misunderstood LearnedHand Jan 2024 #10
Live TV add on Xolodno Jan 2024 #11
Smart! LearnedHand Jan 2024 #12
I don't. Kali Jan 2024 #15
I still purchase physical media too occasionally LearnedHand Jan 2024 #19
Livestream... 2naSalit Jan 2024 #16
Do you livestream MSNBC from their website? LearnedHand Jan 2024 #17
Subscrition. 2naSalit Jan 2024 #25
Is a 47-second delay "live"? Silent3 Jan 2024 #18
Yep I count that as live TV LearnedHand Jan 2024 #20
Live TV is an option, and, in pseudo-DVR fashion, you can "record" live shows to watch later Silent3 Jan 2024 #29
And LOL for the engineer's view on what "live" means LearnedHand Jan 2024 #21
No cable, no satellite, no broadcast, two or three ad free streaming services, and DVDs. hunter Jan 2024 #22
My "journey" is remarkably similar to yours LearnedHand Jan 2024 #26
Other - Superbox Ohio Joe Jan 2024 #23
What's superbox? LearnedHand Jan 2024 #27
So... Superbox Ohio Joe Jan 2024 #34
So in some respect it's similar to a Roku device LearnedHand Jan 2024 #41
You don't have to add any apps Ohio Joe Jan 2024 #46
Can you get CSPAN with that? Attilatheblond Jan 2024 #47
Yes, it has several CSPAN channels Ohio Joe Jan 2024 #49
If somebody doesn't want me to watch their stuff, or makes it too annoying or too expensive to watch their stuff... hunter Jan 2024 #33
Well... Ohio Joe Jan 2024 #35
My tv has been unplugged for a year or more. I watch TV on my computer Demovictory9 Jan 2024 #24
Kicking for the morning crowd LearnedHand Jan 2024 #30
Streaming AND cable (Frontier fiber to the home) HAB911 Jan 2024 #31
We rotate around streaming services Sympthsical Jan 2024 #32
Cost was the main factor for my leaving cable/satellite too LearnedHand Jan 2024 #42
My bill kept climbing to over $200 Sympthsical Jan 2024 #51
"Streaming services" covers a lot of territory. muriel_volestrangler Jan 2024 #37
I consider that "streaming" LearnedHand Jan 2024 #38
Streaming and cable. Elessar Zappa Jan 2024 #40
What keeps you on cable? LearnedHand Jan 2024 #44
Pro sports and pro-wrestling mostly. Elessar Zappa Jan 2024 #50
it's been more than thirty years since I've owned a TV mike_c Jan 2024 #52
I despise the brainless stuff like reality TV and game shows LearnedHand Jan 2024 #53

jcgoldie

(11,674 posts)
1. I'd love to stream some motherfuckingsomething...
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:00 AM
Jan 2024

But welcome to rural America 8 miles outside a town of 30 k... satellite... $100/50 GB.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
3. Yup I'm rural too but I have StarLink
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:05 AM
Jan 2024

I have satellite internet from motherfucker Eloon, but it’s fast and dependable as hell. Expensive as hell too. $120/mo, but NO data caps! I both work from home and do streaming only and never have an issue.

“Fast” means about 150 down and 8-10 up. After the shit service I’ve had before, this is like Cadillac internet.

jcgoldie

(11,674 posts)
8. i dont blame you
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:19 AM
Jan 2024

But I was on the prelist and pulled my application before they got to me because... well fuck that guy.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
14. Hahah I did that too
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:33 AM
Jan 2024

But then sucked it up and ordered it anyway. I had TMobile 5G just before, and it was blazing fast, but they limit you to 100GB of 5G data. I was running close to that limit each month, so I paid for a second AT&T 4G LTE doodad that gave me another 100GB of data. That was more than 200/mo just to support WFH and streaming.

If a decent human being or company ever offers an alternative satellite service I’ll snap it up.

2naSalit

(87,257 posts)
13. Yikes!
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:31 AM
Jan 2024

Check this out...

https://www.fcc.gov/acp

It's the Rural Connectivity Program.

Qualifications include senior citizen, rural resident and others. I pay $60/month for my ISP, nothing else and I watch MSNBC livestreamed. Totally worth looking into.

hunter

(38,387 posts)
28. Welcome to "Can't Do" U.S.A.
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 02:12 AM
Jan 2024

My mom's family, living on their ranch about as far away as you can get from any civilization in the 48 states, had both telephone and electric service, thanks to Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

Rural high speed internet is an inexpensive and almost trivial technical problem compared to that.

jcgoldie

(11,674 posts)
36. I joke with my wife
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:31 PM
Jan 2024

We vacation every other year or so in Yelapa Mexico... its an indigenous fishing village with a lot of expat hippies who dropped out at some point. Its south of Puerto Vallarta near the southern rim of Banderas Bay. It is only accessible by boat-ride about 40 minutes from Vallarta pier as it backs up to the mountains and the jungle. There are not even any cars there, the streets only wide enough for walking or horses (they do have 4 wheelers there now)... its not completely remote they do bring many tourists through every day on tours to see the water falls... but like I said its pretty far from anything and relatively hard to get to... and yet when we visit, our internet connection is about 50 times better than we have at home in southern Illinois less than 30 miles from St. Louis. I guess fucking Mexico has more resources for infrastructure eh?

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
39. I've had the same experience in the Caribbean and remote-ish places in Europe
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 04:08 PM
Jan 2024

I could devolve into a frothing mass over how stupid this country is about internet connectivity. BTW, I also had sterling cellphone reception in those places.

Ms. Toad

(34,226 posts)
2. Thanks to the analog to digital conversion,
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:02 AM
Jan 2024

We have zero (or very limited) access to local TV without cost or subscription. (Prior to the converstion, we got fuzzy analog. Now we get nothing most of the year due to hils, trees, and distance from transmitting stations.)

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
4. I despise Eloon Musk but StarLink is a phenomenal service
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:07 AM
Jan 2024

I had a big snowstorm yesterday and my satellite internet was unaffected. I hate to say it, but I recommend StarLink if it’s available in your area.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
9. Hmmm did you check the StarLink availability map?
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:19 AM
Jan 2024

They announced recently that the entire country is now covered. (Ugh AT&T).

https://www.starlink.com/map

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
45. Yup I was in one of those dark blue hexagons for quite a while
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 04:34 PM
Jan 2024

Meanwhile, people much further out than met got StarLink. I mean I get that, but I was just as bereft of high-speed service as those further out. They enabled it pretty quickly though, and I bet they’ll do that for the Sells area.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
5. I meant to say I'm glad the digital antenna works for you
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:14 AM
Jan 2024

I’m in a broadcast dead zone. If I wanted to watch live TV I’d have to subscribe to some service. I don’t mourn the loss at all, but I do occasionally pull up a local news segment to find out about a specific event. It’s not in realtime though; I just go to their website and watch the recorded segment.

Ms. Toad

(34,226 posts)
7. The digital antenna does NOT work for us.
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:17 AM
Jan 2024

Every once in a while, in the winter, late at night, we are able to get one or two mainstream stations. Other than that, we get multiple versions of all-Jesus-all-the-time-in-at-least-two-languages - so we don't bother.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
10. Oh sorry I misunderstood
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:22 AM
Jan 2024

And excuse me but I laughed right out loud at all Jesus all the time. It’s the Number One Point Five Reason I killed subscription TV (Dish Network at that time). First reason was because of six thousand channels I never watched and fuck them for counting me among the Fox Noise audience because their package included it.

Xolodno

(6,428 posts)
11. Live TV add on
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:24 AM
Jan 2024

But were getting ready to drop it. When DirecTV came out it was great, then we kept getting more channels we didn't watch and the bill kept going up. Then we went streaming....now the same problem.

Now we are just going to drop all subs save one. And change it out once we are done and want to see something else. Or just purchase the series separately.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
12. Smart!
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:27 AM
Jan 2024

When I dropped cable for streaming only in the mid 2000s, the only streaming services were Netflix and Amazon Prime. I totally purchased the shows digitally or on DVD.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
19. I still purchase physical media too occasionally
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:44 AM
Jan 2024

Although much less frequently. For example I own Battlestar Galactica on DVD, but it’s because I want to make sure the streaming services can’t disappear it! Most of the later things I don’t care whether they disappear lol.

2naSalit

(87,257 posts)
16. Livestream...
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:34 AM
Jan 2024

On a laptop. All I have with a screen on it.

I have simple internet and participate in the Rural Connectivity Program to reduce the cost.

And I am thankful for these things.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
17. Do you livestream MSNBC from their website?
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:39 AM
Jan 2024

Or do you have a subscription that provides it? So glad for the Rural Broadband Program! I don’t use it but I’m glad my tax dollars help others use it!

Silent3

(15,505 posts)
18. Is a 47-second delay "live"?
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:42 AM
Jan 2024

We've got YouTube TV for broadcast TV content.

I know, for technical reasons, "Live" isn't ever truly live, but I wondered how much delay we might be experiencing. There's satellite uplink/downlink delay, deliberate delay in case someone wants to censor something, video processing and buffering, etc. (There was typically much less delay back in the days of analog TV.)

So, as New Year's Eve approached New Year's Day of this year, I turned on the TV to watch the ball drop in Times Square. I was also looking at a GPS-synced clock for precise time.

When the countdown chant ended, and everyone shouted "Happy New Year!", the new year was already 47 seconds old.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
20. Yep I count that as live TV
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:49 AM
Jan 2024

But I mean it only in the sense that you must watch it when they broadcast it, as they broadcast it, as opposed to shows like Good Omens or Handmaid’s Tale, which are available to watch on demand at any time.

Silent3

(15,505 posts)
29. Live TV is an option, and, in pseudo-DVR fashion, you can "record" live shows to watch later
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 02:26 AM
Jan 2024

There's on-demand content with YouTube TV as well, but that's seldom where we get on-demand stuff from.

hunter

(38,387 posts)
22. No cable, no satellite, no broadcast, two or three ad free streaming services, and DVDs.
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 01:50 AM
Jan 2024

My wife has never watched television news and opinion. I quit in disgust shortly after 9/11/2001.

Then we quit cable television, mostly because it was too expensive and we weren't watching it.

The last broadcast television show we watched was the finale of Chuck which was January 27, 2012. We moved our television shortly after that and didn't even bother to hook up an antenna. Our current television isn't programmed to receive any channels or connect to the internet.

Over the years we've tried a couple of streaming options -- dongles, "smart" blu-ray players, etc. -- and I don't recommend any of them since they all try to sell you advertising supported television now.

For a few years we were only watching DVDs we rented or bought in thrift stores. Sometimes we buy new DVDs for movies we especially like. We have a large library of them.

One of our children, home from college for a break, set us up with Netflix. We usually subscribe to one or two other streaming services in addition to that. When we get bored with a streaming service we quit.

We don't watch any television with advertising. Any advertising that moves or makes noise is banished from my computers too. I've come to find television advertising intolerable. If I can't make such advertising go away from a place I simply don't go there.

I blame "traditional television" for both Reagan and Trump. It needs to die.

Our grown children and their cousins pay no attention at all to television or radio as we knew it. They only care about their internet connections.

My wife and I have always been more interested in reading than television. Our television budget is about $35 a month. I try not to think about how much we spend on books, magazines, and newspapers. Our e-books have probably saved our house from collapsing under the weight of them.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
26. My "journey" is remarkably similar to yours
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 02:03 AM
Jan 2024

I quit broadcast news about the same time as you and quit subscription TV (satellite TV for me) for the same reason, although earlier. I watch ad-free as well because ands are intolerable and fuck the advertising industry. I’m currently stewing about Amazon Prime, which I get with my Prime membership. They’re going to inject ads and require a 3/mo fee ADDITIONAL to not watch them. I’m considering canceling the entire thing and just purchasing the Amazon series I watch.

Ohio Joe

(21,786 posts)
34. So... Superbox
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 12:34 PM
Jan 2024

It’s hardware we bought at Walmart about two years ago. It works on the honor system… If a show or movie streams on any service, Superbox pipes it into your home. You are only supposed to watch if you subscribe but there is nothing that stops you. It also has over 1400 live tv stations from around the country. Plus, it also has every sports game broadcast. For the $275 we spent, it’s pretty amazing.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
41. So in some respect it's similar to a Roku device
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 04:20 PM
Jan 2024

Roku isn’t a streaming service (although they do have a freevee channel); it’s just a device that connects your tv to the internet and lets you add “apps” to watch other providers’ content. The main difference is that Roku is NOT an IPTV device, but SuperBox is. It looks like a very good option for people who want broadcast TV!

Ohio Joe

(21,786 posts)
46. You don't have to add any apps
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 04:41 PM
Jan 2024

You can but I’m not sure what… Everything I listed is from the base app from Superbox.

hunter

(38,387 posts)
33. If somebody doesn't want me to watch their stuff, or makes it too annoying or too expensive to watch their stuff...
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 11:50 AM
Jan 2024

... I don't watch their stuff.

That's my philosophy with computer software too, which is why I'm a Debian Linux guy and not a Windows or Apple guy.

I'm also wary of hosting devices loaded with sketchy software of unknown provenance on my home network.

If I'm the farm boy dread pirate it's always been my philosophy to go big or go not at all. Or maybe I'm gonna eat the devil fruit, wear the straw hat, and have my own ship.

"SuperBox is a legal android device. We provide hardware. It is up to customers’ choices to install Apps."


I don't want to be the guy from Indiana Jones who chose poorly.

Ohio Joe

(21,786 posts)
35. Well...
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 12:37 PM
Jan 2024

I heard about it from a friend who had been using it for a year with no issues and we’ve had it now for nearly two years with no issues so… Do what is best for you.

Edit - Also, I’m not some newb, I worked as a developer ( of a variety of ranks) for over 30 years.

HAB911

(8,999 posts)
31. Streaming AND cable (Frontier fiber to the home)
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 11:27 AM
Jan 2024

Smart TV(with apps) and an Home Theater PC on another network(Spectrum)

way too much, but it was an evolution not a design, lol

Sympthsical

(9,238 posts)
32. We rotate around streaming services
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 11:41 AM
Jan 2024

Amazon and Disney/Hulu/ESPN are our staples, because we have Prime and D/H/E is somehow folded into my cell phone plan.

Then we just build up shows/movies we want to watch and might select activating a subscription that month. This past month we've been working through various things on Max. Last month we had Netflix, because I was finishing up the Crown and he was watching Heartstoppers (to my incredulous jeering in the background).

We're honestly both mainly YouTube people with an ad blocker. Partner watches all kinds of cooking shows and home improvement things, and I watch documentaries, gaming things, film/book discussion/criticism, and random nonsense (there can never be too many air disaster shows). We used to have all of the streaming stuff, but then realized we barely watched a lot of them.

I haven't had cable since about 2015. It isn't even a principled "Everything is garbage!" thing - even though it is. It just became wildly expensive for a service I was not really using. Network shows aren't really on our radar. So $60/month for 1TB internet, then $20 baseline streaming and whatever else we add that month. Keeps it simple stupid.

Anything important on this earth eventually ends up on YouTube. Partner is super into NFL and Basketball, but all of the half hour highlight reels are . . . on YouTube.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
42. Cost was the main factor for my leaving cable/satellite too
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 04:24 PM
Jan 2024

But I will NEVER AGAIN pay for Fox News, religious programming, right-wing programming, or shopping TV. Same thing goes for satellite car radio. They’ve taken the cable TV approach and I’ll never do that.

Sympthsical

(9,238 posts)
51. My bill kept climbing to over $200
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 06:05 PM
Jan 2024

I'd call them back, cut a deal to trim it down to $160, then it'd start climbing again.

And I finally realized I was only really watching HBO at the time for various shows. Once HBO became a stand-alone streaming app, I decided I was done throwing money out the window.

As more and more streaming apps worked with Chromecast and similar tv dongles, there just wasn't a need to have cable to experience high quality programming and movies on the main tv.

muriel_volestrangler

(101,489 posts)
37. "Streaming services" covers a lot of territory.
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 03:54 PM
Jan 2024

There are streaming services you pay for, and there are ones that are more or less "catch-up TV" internet services from broadcasters. I (in the UK) do not subscribe to any service, but I do make use of the streaming services of the broadcasters. I probably watch more live than streamed.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
38. I consider that "streaming"
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 04:04 PM
Jan 2024

You’re consuming the content not in real time (not at a specified broadcast time) and over an internet connection. I think what I’m really getting at is two things:

Do people subscribe to any provider or service that provides a live TV watching experience? (You can only watch when the content is broadcast, e.g.) And

Do people get cable/satellite content from traditional broadcast networks, internet-only, on-demand content, or both.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
44. What keeps you on cable?
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 04:30 PM
Jan 2024

Honest question! And I’m thinking of, like, maybe content you can only get via broadcast? Something else?

An aside: Many years ago, I was trying to explain to my mom what streaming television meant. (She kept saying, “Oh, that’s right. You don’t have TV.” LOL) I was spectacularly unsuccessful until just a few years ago when I forgot to sign out of Netflix when I left her house. She suddenly discovered the joy of on-demand movies! She still never understood the difference but definitely enjoyed the service!

Elessar Zappa

(14,193 posts)
50. Pro sports and pro-wrestling mostly.
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 04:56 PM
Jan 2024

Plus I like to watch ABC, NBC, CBS, and FOX, because my digital antenna doesn’t catch any networks where I live.

mike_c

(36,281 posts)
52. it's been more than thirty years since I've owned a TV
Sat Jan 6, 2024, 06:19 PM
Jan 2024

Going on forty years, since the 1980s. In recent years I've begun watching YouTube videos occasionally, mostly individuals documenting something cool that they've accomplished, like cycling across continents or building a boat. Of course, those sorts of videos have only been available in relatively recent years.

I utterly despise commercial television programming. I don't watch movies or any other films, etc. Haven't in decades. How many hours do people waste watching the squawking box? Life is too short for that.

LearnedHand

(3,397 posts)
53. I despise the brainless stuff like reality TV and game shows
Sun Jan 7, 2024, 02:10 PM
Jan 2024

But after Breaking Bad cast down the gauntlet, content creators really upped their game. The past 15 years or so have seen some of the best writing and acting I’ve seen outside of movies. I don’t watch TV in the traditional sense. I watch a few very good, ad-free series. I just happen to consume it on a large-screen monitor called a TV.

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