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Old 08-06-2005, 09:33 AM   #1 (Print)
Nathans
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Question Convert TIVO s2 box into a "simple" DVR?

Hello all,

I have a Tivo series 2 DVR (80 GB, I think...) and have been enjoying it for a couple of years.

Is anyone here familiar with a method to convert the Tivo into a "simple" DVR box?

In other words, I'm hoping to use this box WITHOUT a Tivo subscription, as one might use a bland DVR.

Awaiting your wisdom and wizardry. Many thanks.
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Old 08-06-2005, 09:46 AM   #2 (Print)
Sirwill
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Nope

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Old 08-06-2005, 12:55 PM   #3 (Print)
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That would be theft of service, and not discussed here.

The only way to end up having a DVR you do'n have to pay to use, is to replace the hardware fo a DRV that doesn't require payment.

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Old 08-07-2005, 02:26 AM   #4 (Print)
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Exclamation Ok... this didn't come across as intended

I'm not looking to "steal" the fine Tivo services I've been paying for for a while (thanks for the preaching though). Actually, I'll keep paying for them for my other unit.

To make it clear (on the moral side, trusting a technical asnwer might still exist)
I purchased a nice piece of hardware, and also paid monthly for various related services (schedules, guides, raitings, season passes etc.).
Now I'm no longer interested in the services provided (for a fee) by Tivo, to this machine, and would like to use it as a simple DVR, or even just an external HD for my computers.

This activity, for the righteous amongst us who tend to show us the godly path, does not constitute theft, as my (hopefully) altered machine will no longer thrive on the sweat of the good people at Tivo.
Rather than being sent to recycling - I envision this collection of metal and plastics providing me and my loved ones with a few more years of loyal service, under the new title: "Hard Drive connected to the content provider on one end and to the TV system on the other".

Still hoping...
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Old 08-07-2005, 06:08 AM   #5 (Print)
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This discussion comes up often here. There is NOT a way to bypass TiVo inc as a source for guide info, nor is there a way to "awaken" an unsubbed unit.
If there was, you wouldn't find info on it here (or any tivo site for that matter) because we on this forum and those on other forums, don't want to see TiVo inc, fail as a company.

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Old 08-07-2005, 12:32 PM   #6 (Print)
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No, you purchased the box at a reduced price in exchange for a mandatory sub,
IOW, by purchasing the unit, and implied contract was enabled that you would sub the unit to use its recording features.

Being that even simple recording is part of the paid service, making it record without the paid service is therefore theft.

If you desire not to purchace the TiVo service no longer, you can sell the box to someone that will pay for the service, and use the proceeds to buy a unit more suited to your needs, since a TiVo that requires a sub to work apparently does not.

This is not preaching or morality, but simple facts and board rules.

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Old 08-07-2005, 12:46 PM   #7 (Print)
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Perhaps a simple redirection is in order.

A "free" PVR solution can be found by searching Google for MythTV. I quoted "free" since you still have to provide a PC of some sort with the appropriate hardware, so it's not really free in that sense.

Good luck!

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Old 08-07-2005, 03:57 PM   #8 (Print)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by classicsat
That would be theft of service, and not discussed here.

The only way to end up having a DVR you do'n have to pay to use, is to replace the hardware fo a DRV that doesn't require payment.



Come on people...theft of service...you have got to be joking! Do you not have any common sense man. If the guy purchased his Tivo box and paid for it and decided to no subscribe to the Tivo service any longer, then he would be giving up the Tivo To Go features...the program guide and all the extras...but you have got to be joking if you're calling this a theft of service.

If the unit can be made into a 'stupid' dvr if you will...THERE IS NO THEFT OF SERVICE!

Theft of service would be if he was still receiving all the bells and whistles that the Tivo service offered without paying for them. Which if he stopped subbing it then he's not going to get the Tivo service...so THUS THAT'S NOT STEALING ANYTHING. But making his Tivo box (that he paid for) a simple DVR and saying that is theft of service...frankly makes me think you are a moron.

Quote:
Originally Posted by classicsat
No, you purchased the box at a reduced price in exchange for a mandatory sub,
IOW, by purchasing the unit, and implied contract was enabled that you would sub the unit to use its recording features.


No he purcahsed a piece of hardware that requires a subscription from Tivo to USE their programming guides, timers, and features. There is no contract that states he cannot cancel his service at anytime. Or at least I don't have one that says I can't cancel at anytime.

The hardware is his...it's not leased from Tivo...so thus once it becomes unsubbed he can do what he wants to with it...make it a boat anchor...a hood ornament or try and make it a 'stupid' DVR. (although that may violate board rules...don't preach about theft of service...because is not! just say it's not discussed on here)

No one wants Tivo to go out of business...I love my Tivo...It's great! But lets get real here...it's like saying that new car you bought that came with Satellite radio...now once you stop subbing to the satellite radio service you've got to stop listening to any kind of radio in that car.

And if you want to get real about it...most of the stuff discussed in here either violates part or all of your contract anyway...hacking or doing any changes is a violation...so lets not get on our stump so much about one question asked!

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Old 08-07-2005, 04:20 PM   #9 (Print)
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I think the point is that the Series 2 dvr WILL NOT work without a sub to Tivo - hence cannot be "dumbed down". The only way to "dumb it down" would be theft of service. But I thought the series 1 (or a particular one) could be "dumbed down" to be able to work with say security cameras and the such.

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Old 08-07-2005, 04:27 PM   #10 (Print)
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I think what Nathans was simply asking was could it be made to just record like a vcr...using time. Set it to record say starting at 8:00 pm for one hour. Or at least that's the way I took his question(s). If that's the case...that's what I meant would not be theft of service. You have no program guide and nothing related to the Tivo service period. Basically you have a VCR recording to a hard drive.

If the Series 2 units will not work period without a sub, then that should have been the answer...not the preaching about stealing service.

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Old 08-07-2005, 06:46 PM   #11 (Print)
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Whether or not it's possible (I can pretty much guarantee it is), and whether or not it's legal really don't matter here. As it stands, we can't discuss it here (not that I'd want to), end of story.

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Old 08-07-2005, 07:58 PM   #12 (Print)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azitnay
Whether or not it's possible (I can pretty much guarantee it is), and whether or not it's legal really don't matter here. As it stands, we can't discuss it here (not that I'd want to), end of story.

Drew



Exactly my point! It's a board rule, not a theft of service issue. I don't know if it's possible either and don't really care either. Just don't think one question needs to be answered with a unless 'theft of service' answer when that's not TRUE!

End of story now for me!

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Old 08-08-2005, 10:07 AM   #13 (Print)
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As I have said, even basic recording is a feature of the paid service, so any attempt to enable that functionality is considered theft of service. I am not preaching, just stating facts.

All of the hacks allowed to be discussed here don't constitute theft of either the TiVo service, or a pay programming service, nor "extract" video.

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Old 08-08-2005, 12:02 PM   #14 (Print)
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Quote:
even basic recording is a feature of the paid service, so any attempt to enable that functionality is considered theft of service


And what exactly would he be stealing?
Look, companies try to say that breaking their own corporate rules is stealing. In fact, if no laws are broken, you are merely disobeying a non-binding corporate guideline. The hardware is his. The guide data is not. He's not using the guide data. It's really that simple.
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Old 08-08-2005, 02:27 PM   #15 (Print)
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Imagine this,
The Tivo costs quite a bit more than the 100 bucks you can buy one for.
Tivo's are sold as a device AND a subscription.
If TiVo sold boxen that did not require a sub for I dunno say 300 bucks, then the question is a good one.

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Old 08-08-2005, 02:41 PM   #16 (Print)
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In order for you to not being somehow stealing service in the minds of the previous posters you'd have to replace the OS with an alternative PVR gui that runs on the TiVo hardware.

I've researched this a little during the time when I considered this as a way to extend the life of my Tivo after the drive failed, but since that time have discovered you can purchase a replacement of the drive and OS.

So, as near as I can tell doing an OS transplant on the tivo is currently not an option unless you can write your own.

So effectively without a sub the TiVo is useless.

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Old 08-08-2005, 02:59 PM   #17 (Print)
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Tivo is not usless without one and some people who dont want to AFTER PURCHASING their hardware is not stealing.
I paid for my box without the contract so you call us a thiefs?

And to answer your question NO it is not a paper weight you just have to look in the right places!
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Old 08-08-2005, 03:02 PM   #18 (Print)
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I only use mine for manual recording no guide or anything else, how is that theft!!!
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Old 08-08-2005, 03:03 PM   #19 (Print)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanttoknow
Tivo is not usless without one and some people who dont want to AFTER PURCHASING their hardware is not stealing.
I paid for my box without the contract so you call us a thiefs?

And to answer your question NO it is not a paper weight you just have to look in the right places!


This is news to me. But I wonder what the point is, other than a generic recorder. Still, I am intrigued. Out of curiosity I might look a little deeper. Thx.

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Old 08-08-2005, 03:05 PM   #20 (Print)
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I like some shows that are on TV, I like to be able to record them sometimes and put them onto a DVD.

I use TivoWeb and set the recordings and then FTP off of it.

Sorry that was directed to the people who are arguing that it is theft of service!!
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Old 08-08-2005, 09:16 PM   #21 (Print)
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Thanks all for the passionate discussion

A few numbers to ease up on those who worry about my personal, and this machine's contribution to the wellbeing of Tivo Inc.:

The unit was purchased, about 5 years ago, for $250-$300 (not sure since I'm not the original owner) without the "lifetime" subscription.
As such, a monthly sub. fee was extracted from my (and others') more than 60 times, totaling about $800.

If so, beyond the obvious "someone here is an idiot" conclusion, you can also see that these $1100~ cover the hardware cost + lifetime subscription (which I should have bought when I could) several times over.

Even today, as some people understood and some couldn't see through their frowning exercises, I don't intend to abuse the good spirit and gullible nature of the Tivo folks, quite the opposite, I LOVE the Tivo service (quirky interface with my DishNetworks receiver asside) I'm getting a new machine + service ASAP.

Back to the question de-jour:
Beyond some unsupported insinuations regarding my faulty character traits and unsubstantiated claims pertaining to obscure forum rules ("Thou shall not dumb one's Tivo ark in vain"? "Thou shall not place any false content provider before older than Methuselah thou box become"?) - I am yet to be educated on the local/federal legality issue.

Between the Reds on Blues and Corporate sluts vs. Consumerism nihilists barricades I also caught a glimpse of some concrete answers, a few definite "NO"s, a couple of educated "MAYBE"s and the potential fata morgana of "YES".

Did someone mention a way to use the Box as a "simple" VCR?
Was there a promise for some more info on the whole "convert to dumb DVR" endeavor??
Please expand on those.

A short scholar's explanation on the "why not" will also be gladly accepted (Professors under 5 ft.: no pun intended).
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Old 08-08-2005, 09:55 PM   #22 (Print)
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We've taken this discussion as far as it can go on this forum.

Why? Because the forum owner wants it that way. End of story. This board has close ties to TiVo itself, and being a private board, its owner has the right to restrict discussion of any topic he chooses. This certainly falls into that category.

Thus, I can assure you discussion of how to achieve what you're trying to achieve would not go over well on this particular forum. You'll have to look elsewhere.

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Old 08-08-2005, 10:00 PM   #23 (Print)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathans
The unit was purchased, about 5 years ago, for $250-$300 (not sure since I'm not the original owner) without the "lifetime" subscription..

If it's 5 years old, it's not a Series 2 as you stated in your original post.

Any S1 SA unit that shipped with ver. 1.3 software can be used unsubbed for manual recordings. What's the model #? If you no longer have a manual, it's on the back of the unit or in the System Info screen.

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Old 08-09-2005, 08:48 AM   #24 (Print)
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Too bad the great Linux Open Source community wont write a OS for these boxes
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Old 08-09-2005, 07:34 PM   #25 (Print)
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One skeleton is already out of the closet

(I guess this is what my fellow SFions should call a sloved mystery).

The friend who sold it to me over 2 years ago, claimed he had it for about 2 years, but now I see it was born in mid 2002. So, I stand corrected at a Tecate loving, 3 years old machine.

It is indeed a Series 2, model # TCD 140060
Software ver. 7.1b01-2-140, internal temp. 50C and plenty other irrelevant details.


Drew,
Since I probably reached a dead end on the technical side, and your remarks sparked a different curiosity for me, please elaborate:
It seems clear to you that I'm seeking an unholy grail in Tivo's temple, and I would love to understand why.

I'm managing a couple of forums on various subjects, and whenever my colleagues or your's truly remove threads or warn / block a user- we point them to the forum rules and quote the exact clause they broke with their posting.

I've seen newspapers' forums where half the "talkbacks" are criticizing that e-publication, Hardware forums with people suggesting not to buy the product manufactured by the generous host and more, not necessarily in the name of the freedom of speech but rather in the good economical sense of the underwriters.
Even this is not the case here - as my interest is in additional capabilities of a fairly purchased equipment rather than deserting this fine community's sponsor.

So,
What Tivo community rule did you believe I am breaking?
Are the relevant rules here a secret?
Is there a deficiency in this secret-law enforcers - so that this big-brother regime relies on eager snitches and obscure public announcers?

I'm sure we are all beyond the "Why?" "Cause I said so!" period in our lives, and are even capabale of questioning our benevolent paid-content recorder-provider of a discussion board host - and their loyal minions.

(no, I'm not an anti-globalization anarchist with grudges against greedy corporations, just a law-abiding consumer with a service/product related question)
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Old 08-09-2005, 08:54 PM   #26 (Print)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madmunki
Too bad the great Linux Open Source community wont write a OS for these boxes

There are some TIVO brand IC's on the motherboard. I don't think anybody outside TIVO knows how to interface to them.

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Old 08-10-2005, 12:15 PM   #27 (Print)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathans
Since I probably reached a dead end on the technical side, and your remarks sparked a different curiosity for me, please elaborate:
It seems clear to you that I'm seeking an unholy grail in Tivo's temple, and I would love to understand why.


I personally believe that a discussion of how to do what you're trying to do would violate "NOTE...No talk of any type of service theft or video extraction is allowed." (a note attached to the TiVo Underground forum). While you could take that note's meaning very strictly to mean only attempting to use TiVo as it was originally intended (guide data, etc.) without paying for service, I choose to adopt a much broader definition. As classicsat has said, Series2 TiVos without TiVo Basic as an option were never intended to record anything (except the 30-minute buffer) without service. This was TiVo's intention when creating these boxes. As a supporter of TiVo, I would like to see them stick around a while, and requiring payment for TiVo service on these boxes is one step towards that goal. Thus, I respect their intentions when it comes to matters of revenue.

No, what you're attempting to do may not be illegal from the standpoint of the law. I don't really know. However, I don't see how it could be discussed here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathans
I'm managing a couple of forums on various subjects, and whenever my colleagues or your's truly remove threads or warn / block a user- we point them to the forum rules and quote the exact clause they broke with their posting.


I am not the operator of this site, or even a moderator, so it's not my job to censor any content. I also cannot quite an exact clause of a forum rule, because I know of no such list of forum rules (though one may exist somewhere). Feel free to PM David Bott or a moderator if you wish to have the official word on all this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathans
So,
What Tivo community rule did you believe I am breaking?
Are the relevant rules here a secret?
Is there a deficiency in this secret-law enforcers - so that this big-brother regime relies on eager snitches and obscure public announcers?


I don't believe this thread has broken any rules so far, since no "how-to" answers to your question have been given. Thus, the moderators have had no job to do on this thread as of yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathans
I'm sure we are all beyond the "Why?" "Cause I said so!" period in our lives, and are even capabale of questioning our benevolent paid-content recorder-provider of a discussion board host - and their loyal minions.


I am capable of questioning TiVo in certain situations, but I have no interest in doing so here.

Drew
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Old 08-10-2005, 01:52 PM   #28 (Print)
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Many of the rules I've experienced here on the TCF in a passive way tend to be geared towards protecting TiVo's interest regardless of the legalities.

For instance while it may be prefectly legal to extract video from the Tivo in some municipalities discussion of that here is forbidden. It's obvious that it would cause the company no loss of revenue, but it is enforced non-the-less.

OTOH discussion of getting guide data free of charge whether the TiVo is hacked to use an alternate guide source or by somehow altering the software so that guide data is free from TiVo would cause the company a loss in potential revenue.

This is where I think the issue lies. If you can substitute the OS with one that mimicks the TiVo OS, even if only in function and not appearance, it violates the spirit of the rules to not use a TiVo without paying for service.

For me, it's not a TiVo if it doesn't have all the bells and whistles and replacing the OS on a TiVo should be no different than running Linux on an XBOX. I'd be curious how many forum members think that is OK.

In the end though, because of the TCF's close ties to TiVo I believe the forum maintains a sightly paranoid stance with regard to hacking in order to foster their relationship with TiVo. As such some of it's members may not want to lose that relationship by allowing some things to be discussed. However this is a job for the moderators and not random forum members to point out as they are the ones most familiar with the rules, though they may be just trying to lead you from the path of evil.

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Old 08-10-2005, 02:10 PM   #29 (Print)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nathans
It seems clear to you that I'm seeking an unholy grail in Tivo's temple, and I would love to understand why.

Quite simply, it is TiVos buisness model and intent that later S1s/all S2s TiVos be paid subs to the service. A lot of people don't want to negatively affect that buisness, so they don't support anything that would jeaprodize that buisness. On top of that, this board has a positive relationship with the TiVo company, and nobody wants that to go down the the toilet either, which would surely mean the board would have to shut down, if TiVos lawers went after Dave Bott's lawer.
Quote:
Even this is not the case here - as my interest is in additional capabilities of a fairly purchased equipment rather than deserting this fine community's sponsor.

As we are saying, as far as this forum is concerned, and for the good of the TiVo company, there are no/few capabilites available without sub, an despit the unit being paid for, plus being subbed all that time, one is not legally entitled to any useage capability for free.
Quote:
So,
What Tivo community rule did you believe I am breaking?
Are the relevant rules here a secret?
Is there a deficiency in this secret-law enforcers - so that this big-brother regime relies on eager snitches and obscure public announcers?

Theft of service, as in the sticky, since the features you wish to partake in are part of the paid service.

Quote:
(no, I'm not an anti-globalization anarchist with grudges against greedy corporations, just a law-abiding consumer with a service/product related question)

And it was answered, making a TiVo work without paid service is theft of service, and that subject is not discussed here.

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Old 08-10-2005, 02:41 PM   #30 (Print)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by classicsat
Theft of service, as in the sticky, since the features you wish to partake in are part of the paid service.


While I understand and agree with the spirit of the rules that prevent discussing the hows of accomplishing this, I disagree that finding an alternate source for guide data would be theft as long as that data didn't originate from TiVo and was not obtained under false pretenses.

The theft of service rules here apply to techniques designed to gain guide data from TiVo without paying for it. Although this thread may be closed soon due to this rule in the sticky.

"1. No discussion of Theft of services. That includes TiVo, DirectTV, CableTV or theft of any other service. "

It's not really clear if talking about the act of theft is forbidden. I would think not, but often my opinions differ from others.

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