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Old 05-14-2017, 12:40 AM
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NowhereMan 1966 NowhereMan 1966 is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Tiltonsville, OH
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Originally Posted by Jeffhs View Post
Your local cable TV system at that time must have predated Charter by many years. Speaking of Charter, they are now the cable operator in my area, 30 miles east of Cleveland. The cable company is branded "Spectrum", but Charter apparently owns the system here and those in several other states as well. The only difference I see, however, at the moment is a different name on the Spectrum TV application used with my Roku player. That app used to be labeled "Time Warner Cable", but it was changed to Spectrum when the latter took over TWC.

I haven't had five minutes' worth of trouble with my cable service since Spectrum (Charter) took over, even though the only reason I have a cable account at all is so my Roku player (a small media player about the size of a hockey puck) will receive the local TV stations (this is a strict requirement of both Charter and the former Time Warner Cable). I have a three-way bundle (cable, home phone and Internet) which has been working absolutely flawlessly (except for one small problem with my telephone service a few months ago). I am sold on Spectrum (Charter) Cable and intend to stay with them.

Today's cable systems are all automated, so the days of seeing local images such as the ones you said were being shown locally on your cable system 50+ years ago are long over. I knew a few folks (relatives of my dad's second wife) in the seventies who lived in West Virginia and had cable TV service, but I don't recall the name of the cable operator. That system, IIRC after all these years, did have a camera that scanned weather gauges, and probably had background audio, either from a local radio station or from tape; this was the '70s equivalent of today's Weather Channel. Besides that, the system didn't bring in much except network stations from Clarksburg and Weston, West Virginia, Pittsburgh, and, IIRC, Steubenville, Ohio and Wheeling.
I work for a telecommunications company, well actually a U.S. based outsourced call center that has a contract for the client, the telecommunications company. The best clue I can give is that Charter/Spectrum/Brighthouse is really goring our "buffalo" as of now. They are the biggest competitor to us.

I do remember our cable system did exactly what you said in the early 1970's. Our system was "Astro Cablevision " that covered Moon Township, Coraopolis and Cresent Township (Glenwillard), I was born and raised in Moon Township. Later on, they expanded to North Fayette Township. I remember they had a local channel set up in black and white with a camera that scanned back and forth the weather gauges for the local weather and we had WSHH, 99.7 Mc, easy listening playing in the background when WPGH, channel 53, lost its tower in a storm and was off the air for year and a half.

Astro carried all the local Pittsburgh stations along with WJAC 6, Johnstown, PA, WSTV (now WTOV) Channel 9, Steubenville), WTRF 7, WHeeling WV, and WKBN 27 and WYTV 33 out of Youngstown, OH.

Channel lineup IIRC circa 1971 (I was 4/5 years old):

2 - KDKA-TV Channel 2 - Pittsburgh (CBS)
3 - WPGH Channel 53 - Pittsburgh (Ind) (weather channel when WPGH went off the air)
4 - WTAE-TV Channel 4 - Pittsburgh ABC)
5 - open
6 - WJAC-TV, Channel 6 Johnstown, PA (NBC)
7 - WTRF-TV, Channel 7, Wheeling, WV (NBC-then, CBS since 1979(?) also ABC on 7.3 in standard def)
8 - WIIC (now WPXI), Channel 11, Pittsburgh (NBC)
9 - WSTV (now WTOV), Channel 9, Steubenville, OH (CBS then, NBC now)
10 - WYTV, Channel 33, Youngstown, OH (ABC)
11 - open (Maybe WIIC WAS here, but I do remember them being on channel 8) I think WPTT, channel 22, Pittsburgh went here when they fired up in 1978
12 - WKBN, Channel 27, Youngstown, OH, (CBS)
13 - WQED. Channel 13, Pittsburgh, (PBS)

Astro was founded in 1966 IIRC, the year I was born. It belonged to a local family, the Fabecs, who started it up. I graduated with one of them in 1985. Sometime in the 1980's, I was in high school then, they became Newchannels and then the 1990' came along and they changed hands more often than I changed my underwear (I know bad joke ) In 1999, they became Time Warner. We went to Florida on vacation when that happened. We came home and it was AT&T and during our trip, they were very briefly TCI. Mom and I wonder WTF? AT&T then became Verizon and then a quick search for "Astro Cablevision" now turns up they now belong to Comcast.

BTW, when they became Newchannels, the cable box they had was made by "Jerrold Communications" that was started by Milton Jerrold Shapiro, aka, Pennsylvania Governor Milton Shapp.
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