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My theory is that Toronto CTV is being simsubbed with your local CTV channe,l from your home town, a channel that is in the black for you, because it's on the satellite that you do not receive. Your only hope is to send a change of address to Shaw (not sure how you would do this) so that you do not get simsubbed. Here in rural NS Shaw does not simsub CTV.
Your theory is a good one except it can't explain why the Buffalo Bills game at 1pm was available. That's why I keep saying whatever they are doing doesn't make sense.
 

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@goalsgo There are two types of simsubs - the traditional where the American signal is replaced with the Canadian signal. What happens is Shaw Directs case is that the channel map is temporarily changed so that American signal maps to the Canadian one. For example channel 133 would be mapped to the American channel. The transponder that you see is as channel 133 is also mapped to the American channel. In the case of major and live events there are additional rules that allow the local CTV station to request that they get mapped to the 133 position (Toronto) and the American position. This request may even come from CTV itself to protect the local station and it's ad revenue. Your service address must be within the contour of a regional CTV station. For the duration of the game the local station that is found on G1 will map to 133 and any other CTV affiliate and the American station. This protects the local stations ad revenue by ensuring local eyeballs are seeing any local advertisements. If your service address was in the Toronto area this wouldn't be an issue. If you were to move your service address to a location that was not in the footprint of I assume an Atlantic CTV affiliate this problem might go away. I say might because there may be special rules for the Atlantic market to allow the local CTV to blanket cover a larger geographic area then normally would be allowed in a more traditional simsub.
@LONSat - Thank you for the explanations simsubs. I admit not knowing the intricate details involved with simsubs but I certainly understand the basic principle of why they exist, at least in theory. The head scratching starts when trying to correlate the theory to the actual practice.

We are based in Montreal (not the Maritimes). I fully understand your point about local eyeballs. But how does that explain the seemingly random choice to simsub? As I mentioned previously, the 133 feed was available for the Buffalo game at 1pm. Our local eyeballs didn't move anywhere at 4:30 for the Steelers game but the signal was cut for that one. If the purpose of simsub is to protect local ad revenue, then why wasn't the Buffalo game cut as well?

We never had this issue in the past but it only started a few weeks ago. Although I can't pinpoint a precise date, it seems to be around the time when the French stations were moved to G1, including RDS. And RDS was carrying the Steelers game.

And then @NovaMan reports they don't have CTV simsubs in the Maritimes.

All quite simple really !!
 

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My theory is that Toronto CTV is being simsubbed with your local CTV channe,l from your home town, a channel that is in the black for you, because it's on the satellite that you do not receive. Your only hope is to send a change of address to Shaw (not sure how you would do this) so that you do not get simsubbed. Here in rural NS Shaw does not simsub CTV.
Regarding the changing of your address on your account, I would be careful about that. The last time I looked into doing just that (for reasons I won't go into), it could be done via the Website, but it was stated that Shaw would AUTOMATICALLY dispatch a technician to the "new" address to ensure that the equipment was working properly. Not sure whether you would want that to happen or not. I didn't go through with it, nor I did not try to do the change by making a call to Shaw.

This was a couple of years ago so I'm not sure whether that functionality still exists on the website or not.

On another subject in this thread, I do not believe any English simsubbing was ever done simply because certain programming was carried on RDS or TVA Sports in French.
 

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On another subject in this thread, I do not believe any English simsubbing was ever done simply because certain programming was carried on RDS or TVA Sports in French.
@joshuals Thank you for the heads up on changing service address. It was never my intention to do that but it's good to know.

On the issue of simsubbing on account of RDS or TVA sports, I'm not an attorney but I always like to gather the evidence and the evidence in this case is as follows:

On Sunday October 3, the TV broadcasting schedule for NFL games in Montreal was:

1:00 pm: Buffalo-Texas on CBS and CTV
4:25 pm: Pittsburg-Green Bay on CBS, CTV and RDS

We had signal on the Buffalo game but blacked out on the Pittsburg game. The only difference I can see is RDS.
 

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While it is not impossible that RDS was simsubbed I would not expect it to be the culprit as that would be a French feed over an English feed, unless RDS doesn't do anything to change the language and graphics.
 

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@LONSat -

We are based in Montreal (not the Maritimes).

And then @NovaMan reports they don't have CTV simsubs in the Maritimes.
I didn't say Maritimes, I said "rural Nova Scotia".. If you live in Halifax, you get simsubbed with CTV Halifax. Here in Annapolis County we get Global and CITY simsubbed, but not CTV. In Florida I will not get many programs on Global TO and CITY TO because they will be simsubbed by Halifax and Montreal..You will definitely get simsubbed by CTV Montreal which is not on a sat you receive down south. You have to move from Montreal on paper only. Not sure if this is possible.
 

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On Sunday October 3, the TV broadcasting schedule for NFL games in Montreal was:

1:00 pm: Buffalo-Texas on CBS and CTV
4:25 pm: Pittsburg-Green Bay on CBS, CTV and RDS

We had signal on the Buffalo game but blacked out on the Pittsburg game. The only difference I can see is RDS.
Bell Media's press release in the NFL thread says:
Houston @ Buffalo – CTV Toronto, CTV Kitchener, and CTV Montreal
Pittsburgh @ Green Bay – CTV Montreal, CTV Toronto, CTV Kitchener, CTV Ottawa, CTV Northern Ontario, CTV Winnipeg, CTV Saskatchewan, CTV2 Atlantic, and RDS

It's possible that CTV didn't request a simsub of the Canadian channels for the Buffalo game, since there were so few. I assume the CBS channel would have been simsubbed to CTV Montreal in your case, which is on G1 and not available down south.
 

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Bell Media's press release in the NFL thread says:
Houston @ Buffalo – CTV Toronto, CTV Kitchener, and CTV Montreal
Pittsburgh @ Green Bay – CTV Montreal, CTV Toronto, CTV Kitchener, CTV Ottawa, CTV Northern Ontario, CTV Winnipeg, CTV Saskatchewan, CTV2 Atlantic, and RDS

It's possible that CTV didn't request a simsub of the Canadian channels for the Buffalo game, since there were so few. I assume the CBS channel would have been simsubbed to CTV Montreal in your case, which is on G1 and not available down south.
That is more than likely what happened. It would be interesting to know what the trigger point is for a simsub. If the reason for simsubbing is to maximize local ad revenue then it doesn't make sense the Buffalo game was not simsubbed to CTV Montreal as well. All very mysterious. Will do more investigating next Sunday.
 

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That is more than likely what happened. It would be interesting to know what the trigger point is for a simsub. If the reason for simsubbing is to maximize local ad revenue then it doesn't make sense the Buffalo game was not simsubbed to CTV Montreal as well. All very mysterious. Will do more investigating next Sunday.
I don't know if there is a specific "trigger point" to simsub one Canadian station over another. The decision is totally up to CTV, in this case. Most people wouldn't even be aware that a simsub was in effect, unless they were actually looking for ads from another province. It's only in rare circumstances like yours that it becomes a problem.
 

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You're right, yes we can so it's not a total loss. The only difference is we always record games to watch later to skip the commercials.
While you are down south you will need an extra piece of equipment.
You need an Over The Air DVR
 

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I don't know if there is a specific "trigger point" to simsub one Canadian station over another. The decision is totally up to CTV, in this case. Most people wouldn't even be aware that a simsub was in effect, unless they were actually looking for ads from another province. It's only in rare circumstances like yours that it becomes a problem.
@Dr.Dave I appreciate your insight in this simsub issue which, quite frankly, doesn't make much sense to me in the way it's being carried out. And it's probably because I have very limited knowledge on simsubbing to begin with. To your point, I fully understand that our problem only affects snowbirds.

Would you know who actually controls the simsub process? Does CTV tell Shaw exactly how they want it to be implemented or do they just make a general request and leave it up to Shaw?

Another question comes to mind. If CTV decides to simsub a CBS signal to all their affiliate cities across Canada, does each city get their own local ads or do all cities get the ads from one "master" city?

If each city gets their own local ads then why is the Toronto feed moved to G1 from its normal source on F2? After all, if I'm in Montreal I would have no reason to watch the football game from the Toronto feed because it's the same identical feed and I have no interest in seeing ads from Toronto. Not to mention that for most people who have PVR's, ad-skipping is a common practice anyway.
 

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@goalsgo I am not a Shaw employee but I can assure you the Toronto signal is not moving to G1 and then back. What is happening is your channel map is being changed so that when you enter 133 on your remote the channel map is no longer pointing to CTV Toronto (which is on F2) but it now points to another signal. In your case because the screen goes blank, 133 and others are now pointing to a G1 signal. The CTV Toronto signal is still being beamed down it's just your receiver is no longer capable of getting it because the map/pointer changed.
 

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@Dr.Dave Would you know who actually controls the simsub process?
The "Broadcaster" asks the service provider for the simsub. The broadcaster should abide by the simsub regulations when making this request. Not all programming (that can be simsubbed) is necessary simsubbed.

It used to be that only OTA broadcasters could ask for this, however, lately non-OTA "broadcasters" like TSN can request it as well. Bell-owned stations are typically "the worst" for requesting siimsubs.
 

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@goalsgo I am not a Shaw employee but I can assure you the Toronto signal is not moving to G1 and then back. What is happening is your channel map is being changed so that when you enter 133 on your remote the channel map is no longer pointing to CTV Toronto (which is on F2) but it now points to another signal. In your case because the screen goes blank, 133 and others are now pointing to a G1 signal. The CTV Toronto signal is still being beamed down it's just your receiver is no longer capable of getting it because the map/pointer changed.
Ah well this starts to make sense now!

Does that mean there would be no channel map change for viewers in Toronto and they would still be getting the Toronto signal on 133 from F2 instead of the G1 signal? And if we were in Montreal and selected 133 we would get the G1 signal?
 

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The "Broadcaster" asks the service provider for the simsub. The broadcaster should abide by the simsub regulations when making this request. Not all programming (that can be simsubbed) is necessary simsubbed.

It used to be that only OTA broadcasters could ask for this, however, lately non-OTA "broadcasters" like TSN can request it as well. Bell-owned stations are typically "the worst" for requesting siimsubs.
@57 Thank you.
 

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Would you know who actually controls the simsub process? Does CTV tell Shaw exactly how they want it to be implemented or do they just make a general request and leave it up to Shaw?
All the OTA stations send their simsub requests to a third party clearing house that coordinates all the programs to make sure there are no conflicts and distributes the simsub schedule to all the cable and satellite companies. This is especially important during primetime where U.S. networks schedule some of their most popular programs to run an extra minute to keep viewers from switching channels. Sometimes the subsequent programs are on different Canadian networks.

Terrestrial services like cable and IPTV substitute the channel on a city-by-city basis at the head-end. Shaw Direct simulates the process by performing a virtual channel override based on the service address of the receiver, so each city gets their own local ads.

Not to mention that for most people who have PVR's, ad-skipping is a common practice anyway.
Advertising is the only source of revenue for OTA stations. Unlike the U.S., there is no retransmission fee paid by the cable/satellite company to the OTA station.

Studies have shown that there is a significant number of ad views even with PVR owners. Live sports are especially valuable since so many people watch them live, rather than record them to skip the ads.
Does that mean there would be no channel map change for viewers in Toronto and they would still be getting the Toronto signal on 133 from F2 instead of the G1 signal? And if we were in Montreal and selected 133 we would get the G1 signal?
That's correct.
 

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It used to be that only OTA broadcasters could ask for this, however, lately non-OTA "broadcasters" like TSN can request it as well.
The CRTC changed the rules again in 2015 so that only OTA stations can request simsubs. TSN and other specialty channels can't request simsubs.
 

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Thanks to all who chimed in to explain this process. Despite what I (and hopefully others) have learned I'm still not able to explain the reason why only one of the 2 NFL games last Sunday was simsubbed in the Montreal market. It seems like that piece will always be missing from the simsub puzzle. In some of the papers I have since read on the subject there appears to be some momentum to reform those rules or even abandon that practice altogether.

It's a little annoying because after the loss of many channels in the shift from F1/ F2 to G1 (especially French) we thought we had reached stability as to what is available and where. This simsub issue shows that's not the case.

Again, thank you!
 
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