Is Cord Cutting Illegal?
We get this question a lot. And no, cord cutting is not illegal. Some cord cutters may engage in illegal activities but we have 3000+ customers that have cut the cord legally and saved thousands of dollars.
So why do people think cord cutting is illegal? Mostly it comes from misinformation. Often times people will hear about college kids watching shows on websites hosted in Russia or some other country. Yes…that is illegal. It violates US intellectual property law.
However, it is 100% legal to put an antenna on your roof to get signals from the local broadcast towers. In fact, it is so legal and above board that your HOA cannot prevent you from putting an antenna on your home.
NOTE: The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) rule (47 C.F.R. Section 1.4000) has been in effect since October 1996, and it prohibits restrictions that impair the installation, maintenance or use of antennas used to receive video programming. The rule applies to video antennas including direct-to-home satellite dishes that are less than one meter (39.37″) in diameter (or of any size in Alaska), TV antennas, and wireless cable antennas. The rule prohibits most restrictions that: (1) unreasonably delay or prevent installation, maintenance or use; (2) unreasonably increase the cost of installation, maintenance or use; or (3) preclude reception of an acceptable quality signal.
It is also not illegal to subscribe to online services like Sling or Philo to supplement your free antenna broadcasts. Dish owns Sling and Philo is owned by ViacomCBS. They know these laws backwards and forwards and want to provide you with 100% legal streaming options. So, if you combine antenna signals (protected by Congress) and streaming services like Sling and Philo (owned by TV companies) you can get be a 100% legal cord cutter.