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Satellite Service Gap

November 19, 2000

* "Satellite Viewers Don't Receive Local Programs Despite New Law" [Nov. 13] does not exactly relate the entire problem. Our experience is a little different.

We are in the Palm Springs area, in which the networks ABC, NBC and Fox are served by local affiliates. The CBS station is not represented by a local station. When we got our DirecTV dish just a year ago, we were assured that we would receive local stations--not so!

We were allowed the CBS station because DirecTV is providing that station in this area. But since DirecTV is not providing our local stations yet, we were told that we could receive the L.A. network stations, but the permission to get the L.A. stations would have to come from our local affiliates.

We visited our local stations and they assured us that they would not give permission for us to receive L.A. stations. Why? Because they don't have to.

They suggested an antenna (doesn't work and isn't allowed) or basic cable at $10 a month extra. (We bought satellite because of a bad experience with Time Warner.) The bottom line is that we could receive ABC, NBC and Fox, but the local stations stand in the way.

So here's an open message to ABC, NBC and Fox: We watch news, sitcoms, dramas on CBS. We will never again see another advertisement on your station. And we don't miss it in the least. You can thank the narrow-mindedness of your local affiliates for this situation.

MARILYN BARTON

La Quinta

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