The short answer? Yes, you can. However, you’ll probably want to avoid doing so, because it likely constitutes a breach of contract with your television provider.
With so many “terms of service” pages you’ve agreed to when signing up, it’s easy to miss what you are, and aren’t allowed to do. Even the most common luxuries there are limits; like what you can or can’t do with your TVs.
Questions like the one above, or others like “Can I remove commercials from my TV” or “Do I need to pay extra to show DVDs in my business?” are the key to running a safe ship. While your business may be focused on selling a product or service to a customer, media companies aren’t much different. They make money off of the use of their media properties and/or through advertising that pays for the creation of the content. This article will address an issue that’s becoming more frequent, which is the idea of modifying, or substituting television commercials on your business TV.
Replacing Commercials Using TV Software
There are companies that have made it their mission to create software to help you break the rules. Unfortunately, using the so-called “solutions” can create more problems than it’s worth. With the way technology is constantly evolving, there’s not a lot you can’t do. But just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should. Your business shouldn’t have to pay the price.
Often times, business owners aren’t even aware that what they’re doing is illegal; especially not when companies are selling them television solutions that encourages them to do prohibited things in the first place. The sticky part is, if you hire, or partner with a company that provides you a service which lets you modify your cable subscription; it doesn’t make you any less liable.
Liable for what, exactly? Business TV software that modifies, or changes the service from its original form without the expressed consent of your provider may violate the Terms & Conditions listed in your service agreement:
There it is. Tucked a little ways down the alphabet on DirecTV’s Terms & Conditions page; where it always was. In case you missed it again, it says:
“Unless authorized by DIRECTV in writing through a DIRECTV subscription service, you agree that all Services will be exhibited in entirety, in original form and as provided by us, without any modifications, additions (including the addition of a crawl line), or deletions to any of the Services.”
For the same reasons you can’t play Netflix, or DVDs in a place of business, you can’t alter a portions of broadcasts when they don’t suit your needs.
Just because the technology exists, doesn’t mean it’s legal to use it
Let’s look at a separate example of tech companies helping you break the rules. Take speeding in your car for instance. No one wants to get a speeding ticket. Radar jammers were invented to block a police officer’s ability to measure your speed while you are using it. But they are illegal in all 50 U.S. states.
The penalty for using a radar jammer is much worse than the few hundred dollar fine you’d get for speeding. Federal law provides up to a $75,000 fine and possible imprisonment! And the radar jammer manufacturer isn’t going to owe the money or serve the time. As the person that got caught using it, you will.
Why are you Replacing Commercials in the First Place?
It’s a bad sign if you get to this point. If you’re trying to replace unwanted commercials that keep showing up on your business TV, what does that tell you? It illustrates how you’re not in control of what’s on your TV. It demonstrates how services like cable and DirecTV aren’t really a fit for businesses in general. Yet so many business owners settle for it, despite there being alternatives that cost less, and let you do more.
There’s a silver lining to all of this, though. If you’re trying to modify the commercials on your cable, or DirecTV supscription, it means you recognize how harmful certain commercials can be for your business. Dealerships obviously don’t want ads for other local dealerships running on their TVs, and fast-food restaurants wouldn’t want ads for cheaper coffee, or better meal deals from a franchise across the street.
In the end, there’s better ways to market your business than a costly cable subscription. There’s It’s Relevant.
IRTV: Replace the Cable, not the Commercial
It’s Relevant TV is the solution you’re looking for if you’re a business owner, and you want to overwrite competitive commercials, but keep the TV content. It’s Relevant keeps competitive commercials automatically. Plus you can showcase your own spots among the premium content IRTV provides. Everything is safe, family-friendly, and things people genuinely enjoy watching.
It’s a television service that gives you control over what comes on the TV, and costs less than what most businesses are paying for cable, or digital display software. The best part? No more paying a cable company to play competitor ads in your business.