For several months I had been complaining to my wife and friends that I could no longer tune in CNN at home. This problem seemed to have been resolved when unexpectedly it started coming in loud and clear on Friday evening. The reception I would say is about 90 percent clear, with some distortion along the outlines of headline text and an occasional, soft buzzing hum. Hopefully, the clear reception is permanent.
I live near Republic Square, and have always been able to pick up CNN very clearly. When I was living there for eight months in 2002 I only received some static in the signal occasionally on overcast days, but usually any problems I had were cleared up after moving around the inter-video component connection wire I used as a makeshift antenna. This continued to be the case until about six months ago, when I noticed that the signal’s quality gradually began to decline. By the end of March I was so frustrated with the by then snowy black and white reception that I purchased an indoor antenna, basically a small black box made from cheap plastic with the familiar telescopic retractable metal spires you see on nearly all TV antennas screwed to each side of the thing and a square swiveling part resembling a miniature radar dish in the center. Just below that on the base of the antenna was a round knob that when turned clockwise delivered a somewhat better picture depending on the position step—the antenna favored the 4:00 and 10:00 positions best. This seemed to have been a solution as the color returned, but a few weeks later the black and white fuzz appeared on all the steps. Repositioning the base in different places along the top of the TV set to which it was affixed by four suction cups as well as lowering and raising the spires did nothing.
One day, after having smashed the antenna into oblivion only a few nights beforehand on my living room hardwood floor, I decided to install an outdoor antenna to the left of the balcony overlooking
I as well as arguably thousands of others in
I had been suspicious about CNN’s gradually degrading signal for a while, guessing that the people who exclusively broadcast the news network, whoever they were, worked out a deal with one of the companies offering cable television services in
So I decided to write a letter to the only general email address I could find on the site. The title was “Restore CNN's broadcast signal” and it read as follows:
TV/CS Media/Media TV, Armenia
I am writing you regarding the transmission of 24-hour
CNN broadcasting in
. I am an American working Armenia
and living in
. When I first arrived in late Yerevan
2004 CNN was being tuned in very clearly in
. Since then, especially in the last Yerevan
four months, CNN's broadcast has significantly
declined to the point where the transmission is barely
It is now practically impossible to watch CNN, even
with a properly installed outdoor antenna. I see a
faint picture now without color, using a new outdoor
antenna, whereas 6 months ago I received a fairly
clear picture with no antenna installed. I live near
Republic Square and my antenna is pointed towards the
communications tower, yet the picture is very Yerevan
faint without color, and the sound is poor. My
neighbors have the same problems, even with installed
Can you tell me when you will repair your transmitted
signal of CNN so that I and thousands of others in
can watch it properly? Realize that the Yerevan
"BizBreak" advertising is also suffering since
outsiders living in downtown
cannot watch the Yerevan
ads or the news for that matter.
Please let me know when I can expect to watch CNN
clearly once again.
I waited a few days but didn’t receive a response, so I sent the email again. Each time I CC’ed a different PR-related contact. I didn’t receive a response from my second letter, either.
Was the restoration of the signal a few days ago coincidental? Probably so, although I would like to think my letter had something to do with it. But it doesn’t matter. The important thing is that now hopefully anyone with a decent antenna in