Sox network still way late with legal ID break

Matt S.
Wed Oct 8 23:39:27 EDT 2008

The tones used to be audible back in the day. DTMF tones like from a telephone but now they are actually data packets embedded into the digital stream from the networks. The digital inserters at the headends called a "DM" actually "splice" the digital stream from the local spots into the program stream from the network that then continues out to your digital cable box. If you don't use a digital cable box the stream is decoded and goes through an old fashioned modulator then out to your TV.  Not too long ago the headends had systems not unlike radio automation systems. The program feed from the satellite receiver went into a switch, a video card from the playback computer would send the video/audio from the spot and a switch would put it on the air. Multiply this by 40 or so channels that have local spots inserted and this was a video card and switch for each channel. If you heard tones and no local spots watching years ago, it could have simply been
 that your local cable system did not sell local spots on that break or at all. You would still see fill spots/PSA/Promos etc. from the TV network though. 

--- On Wed, 10/8/08, Paul B. Walker, Jr. <> wrote:

> From: Paul B. Walker, Jr. <>
> Subject: Re: Sox network still way late with legal ID break
> To:
> Cc: "(newsgroup) Boston-Radio-Interest" <>, "Kevin Vahey" <>
> Date: Wednesday, October 8, 2008, 10:59 PM
> I remember watching hockey or baseball on TV back in
> Connecticut when I was
> younger and wondering what those tones were for, because
> they'd fire off
> while going into a break but nothing happened.
> Paul
> On Wed, Oct 8, 2008 at 8:22 PM, Matt S.
> <> wrote:
> > <snip>
> >
> > Matt Stevens
> > (now out of the biz except for weekends at WZID and
> now in Master Control
> > at Comcast Spotlight ad insertion in Wellesley. In
> cable, NESN does a pretty
> > good job sending us the "tones" during the
> 3rd and 6th inning breaks that
> > trigger local spot insertion in all the cable
> headends.)
> >
> >
> >
> >
> -- 
> Sincerely,
> Paul B. Walker, Jr.


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