Watching Sports…or Not.

This is the twenty-first century. We have the internet superhighway. We have high-speed internet access, and more wifi hotspots than Starbucks stores. So why is it so hard to watch sports?

Case in point: I’m trying to watch football. The other four people in my house hate football, so when I watch it, they have to do something else so they don’t have to watch football. I think I caught one of them doing chores yesterday so she wouldn’t have to watch football.

I want to watch football, but I don’t want to monopolize the television either. We only have one television. The obvious choice is to purchase a second television and connect that to DirecTV as well. Unfortunately DirecTV tells me that in order to do that, I would have to pay them $100. I would also have to buy a second television. So we’re looking at about $300 any way you slice it.

I asked them, is there a way I can watch football on my computer? Can I get the second receiver and plug it directly into my computer’s HDMI port? That way I only pay $100. No, they say. That won’t work.

Then they mention that I could download a program called “DirecTV2PC.” With this program, they say, I can watch all the programs I have recorded on my DVR directly on my computer. Only problem? I downloaded it, and it gives me this error:


Actual screenshot from my computer.

In case you can’t read that, it says “DirecTV2PC cannot display this video because your graphics card does not currently support screen capture protection for protected content. Try updating your graphics card driver or modify your driver settings.” I went to Nvidia (my graphics card manufacturer) and made sure that my graphics card driver was current. Then I tried running the program again. Same error.

So I did a google search for this problem and found out that people have been having this error for the past five years or so. Some people suggested certain work-arounds (like turning your theme to “high contrast black” which makes your computer look like a Goth version of Windows 95. None of these worked for me.

At that point, I decided to call DirecTV and ask them what to do. The third option is called “GenieGO,” which is a device that I could plug into my receiver and use an app on my computer or iPad to access my DVR’ed programs (including sports games). But guess what? It costs $135. So I asked DirecTV, “How can I get this DirecTV2PC program to work?” Their answer: try to find a third-party program to install that will allow you to use our program on your computer.

You read that right. They want ME to fix THEIR software problem.

I asked them, “Well, since your program isn’t working correctly, is there any consideration you guys can give me on the GenieGO device? Like maybe a reduced price or even free?” Nope.

There are four basic times that NFL games are played during the week: Thursday night, Sunday afternoon, Sunday night, and Monday night. You can watch all of them on television (every game, if you have NFL Sunday Ticket) or using a Verizon device (for me, that’s my cell phone). Monday night games can be seen on the above OR on or the Watch ESPN app if you have a cable provider that has an agreement with ESPN. DirecTV doesn’t.

Back to my original point: We live in the 21st century. There should be a way to have access to all of these games on any computer, for a price. There isn’t. Same thing happens with baseball: I want to watch Cubs games, but I’m in their blackout zone, so I can pay money to have access to all the live games I could ever want…..except for Cubs games. It’s asinine. All I know is that the NFL and the MLB need to get their acts together so people can watch their games.


About Steve Picray

I have been many things, but right now I am a registered nurse attempting to pay off my debt so that, God willing, I can be a pastor again someday. I have a wife and three kids. I am a conservative Christian (of the Baptist variety). This blog is about me: the things that happen to me, the things that interest me, and the things that bother me. If you have a question, just e-mail me at spicray AT gmail DOT com. God Bless!
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