SEPTA for sale

IMG_4960.JPGToday it was announced that SEPTA’s Market East station would be renamed Jefferson Station in a sponsorship deal with SEPTA and the city of Philadelphia. I didn’t have a problem with this until I read the following line:

In a similar deal in 2010, SEPTA sold the naming rights for Pattison Station on the Broad Street Subway, rechristening it AT&T Station. That five-year deal cost AT&T $5.4 million, of which SEPTA received $3.4 and its advertising agent, New York-based Titan Worldwide, got $2 million.

A 5 year deal? Are you telling me that in 5 years when AT&T is gobbled by the Walmart/Google/Comcast conglomerate that’s sure to happen, we’ll be in for another name change?

In the 20 years that the Susquehanna Bank Center has been in Camden, it has had 2 previous names (I still refer to it as the Tweeter Center by periodically). The Wells Fargo Center is even worse with 4 total names in 18 years (I still miss calling it the FU Center – one of the more unfortunate names in sports history). This seems like a bad idea for transportation centers, where the idea is to be easily found. How easy will it be when the names change every few years? I mean, can Xfinity City Hall be too far behind?

I’m all for SEPTA coming up with creative solutions for funding, especially when you have state leaders that don’t care about public transit. That said, I hope they have the good sense to remember that these names actually do have a purpose, and don’t change them every time they get a high bidder.

5 Things I love/hate: Verizon FIOS

So we’ve had Verizon’s FiOS service for a little over a year (actually it’s a year for their Internet service and about 9 months for TV). So here are 5 things I love and hate about the service:

5 Things I love about Verizon FiOS:

  1. Raw Speed – Verizon’s FiOS Internet is so much faster than Comcast’s service – and the word is that there’ll be a 10% increase in speed soon.
  2. Picture quality – When we got our HD TV last year we were very disappointed in the quality of non-HD  stations on Comcast.  The quality was so degraded, that we missed our old analog set.  Not only are the non-HD channels significantly better, the HD channels look better too.
  3. Price – This is hard to compare because the services aren’t the same, but I’m getting more channels, faster internet, for less money.  Case closed.
  4. Multi-room DVR – with this service, a show you record on one DVR is available on any box in the house.
  5. It works – our Comcast service went down so often, it felt like I was being ripped off.  So far, so good on Verizon.  Aside from my modem dying, the service has been pretty good.
And in the spirit of fair and balanced reporting
5 things I hate about Verizon FiOS:
  1. On Demand – They have it, but Comcast had more network shows (CBS and NBC primarily) on demand.  Hoping that this changes with Verizon soon.
  2. Messages – Comcast would let you know through your box of any free HBO or Cinemax weekends.  If there was a special, that red light was on letting you know.  The message red light has yet to turn on on our FiOS box.
  3. The On Screen Guide – Too much going on.  They recently upgraded the guide – I wish I could go back to the old one.
  4. Multi-room DVR – yes I loved it too – but one thing: if you record an HD show, then you have to watch it on an HD set in another room.  Being as we only have one HD TV, that reduces the usefulness of this service significantly.
  5. No CN8 – I shouldn’t complain because at least FiOS has Comcast Sportsnet, but when both the Sixers and Phillies were in the playoffs, that pushed a lot of the early season Phillies games to CN8.
All in all, I highly recommend the service.  It’s had a great start, and it’s sure to get better. And best of all – you get to call Comcast and cancel – what could be worth more?