Cut the Cord

Cable is crazy expensive. Even when I wasn’t a Broke-ass™ I wasn’t willing to pay $100 plus for 500 channels that I didn’t watch. Plus Spectrum is an evil empire and we are the rebel alliance.

I was paying Time-Warner 40 bucks a month for years, basically by renewing a promo over and over. Then here comes Spectrum with no promo for Internet-only whatsoever. So, now I’m supposed to either pay $20 more ( Broke-ass™ NOT APPROVED), or pay $10 more for half the speed (10 mbps… LOL). Um, no.

I’m going to burn through my free 5GB T-Mobile HotSpot like never before. The Starbucks gift card I got from e-Rewards is going to come in real handy too.

Want to free yourself from ISP slavery? Here’s some of the things I’m doing in descending order of legality:

Torrents
Now if you want to remain in the clean world, skip the next two paragraphs. I torrent. It took me a while out of abject fear of bricking my laptop, but the desire to replace the DVDs I lost in storage overwhelmed my moral compass. I figure that I already paid for them so it’s okay. Then I ruined it and downloading films I hadn’t owned. I’m not Catholic so I can’t seek absolution on a weekly basis so I’m basically stuck until Armageddon. Darn Protestantism. I’m not going to give you a primer on torrenting because I really don’t need the FBI in my life, but uTorrent is a reliable program and completely non-scary.

Streaming
Still not legal, but a whole lot easier to do and you get broadcast television and cable shows. I have a reliable list of off-shore streaming sites thanks to Google (*whispers*movie4k.to*ahem*). Some better for movies, some better for television series. The only problem is that unlike Netflix, it becomes a chore to keep track of what episode you left off at. Then finding a working link is an issue with older videos. Quality is also problem. They can be some of the most bootleg of bootleg videos, I’m talking circa 1990s bootleg with people walking through them (Ugh Spider-man: Homecoming). But  once a film comes out on DVD, the quality is 4k perfect.
There are also apps like Movie Box but those are more involved and unreliable to maintain if you are on a unjailbroken iOS product. Android seems to be much easier.

The Public Library
There isn’t a better public service than the library. Okay, maybe water and sewer. Maybe. The DVD section in the New York Public Library rivals the dearly departed Blockbuster for selection. And unlike Redbox, if they don’t have it at your branch you can order it. I recently ordered seasons 1 and 2 of Outlander after I got tired of hunting for it on streaming sites. Plus why not do it the legal way if you can? Now the question is whether or not if it’s okay to burn the DVDs for later viewing. So many legal grey areas… so many.

Firesticks, Roku boxes, etc.
I can’t tell you much about any of these because I haven’t owned a TV since 2006. But I hear they are great! If you don’t mind subscribing to Netflix, Showtime and HBO al a carte, you’ll save a bundle and still be in the clear legally and ethically.

I think that’s pretty much it other than a sad digital antenna that you may or may not be able to get PBS on. Best of luck cutting the cord!

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