Students need converters for movie channels

Students need converters for movie channels

by Julie Loven

Simpson students may soon be able to pay to watch the movie channels they’ve been missing in their dorm rooms.

Mediacom, Simpson’s cable provider, recently changed its cable policy. Under the new policy, in order to get movie channels, subscribers must first purchase a digital converter.

“Simpson provides broadband basic and family cable, which basically includes channels 2-77-excluding the movie channels HBO, Cinemax, Showtime, Starz, and Encore,” said Charles Thomas, telecommunications and network technician.

It is possible, however, to get the digital converter and watch the movie channels in dorm rooms or apartments.

As it stands right now, digital converters are available to students but they might have to go to Des Moines to get them.

“A lot of people didn’t realize that Mediacom was at Hy-Vee last week distributing receivers. If there is enough interest, I’m going to try to get Mediacom back to campus,” said Thomas.

Simpson pays $36.95 a month per room to get cable TV in all residence buildings. Students who want movie channels will have to pay the extra price.

There are several different movie channel options. If, for example, students only want one additional movie channel, that will cost his or her room $20. If students want all 42-movie channels that are available, rooms will have to pay $43 extra per month.

Digital cable will not be available at all places on campus though.

“We cannot get converters in the fraternity or sorority lounges or in any of the lounges in the residence halls because Mediacom licensing will not allow more than 25 people to watch in one place,” said Thomas.

According to Thomas, students technically did not lose any channels with the Mediacom switch.

“Students weren’t really supposed to have movie channels in the first place,” he said.

It was Mediacom’s mistake and they forgot to shut it off from people who ordered movie channels from them in previous years.”

Many students are upset that the movie channels are no longer available for free.

Sophomore Jeana Baker agrees. “I used to watch the movie channels when there was nothing else on. I’m not happy with the fact that we don’t have them anymore,” she said.

If students are interested in ordering additional cable service, call Mediacom at (515) 246-1555. Tell them you’re with the Simpson bulk account and then give them your street address, housing unit, room number and which option you prefer.