Part of the reason pirates never really got into TV was the cost of equipment versus transmitter availability. As the LPTV & translators eventually move from NTSC to ATSC, the ability to get a hold of transmitter and antenna that a pirate could wire and handle (like a small solid-state single phase unit) will be easier. Throw this into the equation like an area which can quickly go to all off-air antenna signals (like Miami, FL during or after a hurricane… and where pirate radio is rampant), and I suspect our first pirate TV stations will be here within two years. Availability of transmitters, antennas, and an audience still capable of seeing NTSC TV in an area that can quickly go all antenna and portable, plus DVD players, home video mixers consumer videocameras, and non-linear PC editing, and you’ve got your first pirate. Be careful what you wish for (“what we’d like to see”). These pirate TV stations might just be on the horizon.
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Vice President of Technology & Broadcast Operations