How to Add Your Local TV Listings to myEarthLink

myEarthLink with TV listingsWhat’s on TV? Just check myEarthLink.

Yes, most paid TV services, whether cable or satellite, have channel guides built in. But there are a lot of times that it’s helpful and convenient to see what’s coming up without turning on the TV (especially if you want to plan your night’s viewing before you leave work).

So many EarthLink Internet access customers like to add local TV listings to their myEarthLink Start Page. It’s a very simple one-time setup. Here’s all you need to do to get more out of your TV viewing:

  1. Go to your Start Page at http://my.earthlink.net/ and sign in if you aren’t already signed in.
  2. Scroll down to the TV Listings section (since pages are custom, it can be in many different places). If you don’t see TV Listings at all, you may need to add it (look for the Add a Feature section, click TV Listings and then the Add button).
  3. Click Go to your local TV listings.
  4. Enter your zip code.
  5. Click on your TV provider type: Cable, Satellite or Antenna (FiOS, U-verse and other fiber-based TV providers are listed under Cable).
  6. Click on your television provider.
  7. You should now see current local listings provided by TotalTV.
  8. Click the categories shown under the blue bar to show All listings or only Movies, Sports, Family programming or News.
  9. Use the drop-down menus on the right to select a different time of day (you’ll see two hours of programming displayed starting at the time you select) or a different day.
  10. Click on any of the listings to get more information about the show: an overview, cast and photos.

That’s all you need to do to set up your local TV listings. Next time you’re on your Start Page, simply click the local TV listings link to see what’s on. Happy viewing!

Add Your Favorite Movie Theaters to myEarthLink

If you’re an EarthLink Internet access customer, you may already know what a good choice myEarthLink.net is a to start all your surfing: because it has a great mix of relevant content that can be personalized based on your location and your interests.

We’ve written in that past about how to personalize your myEarthLink page in general, moving features up or down, deleting or adding features, and more.

We’ve also looked more closely at how to check your email on myEarthLink.

myEarthLink-my-favorite-theaters-moviesToday we’ll focus on movies and show you how easy it is to add your favorite movie theaters, so you can keep up on all those summer blockbusters heading your way. It will not only give you easy access to movie showtimes at your favorite local theaters, but also let you see trailers, get movie information, and in many cases buy tickets.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Go to your Start Page at http://my.earthlink.net and sign in if you aren’t already signed in.
  2. Scroll down to the My Favorite Theaters section (since pages are custom, it can be in many different places). If you don’t see this feature at all, you may need to add it to your page (look for the Add a Feature section, click My Favorite Theaters and then the Add button).
  3. Click the edit link on the My Favorite Theaters feature bar.
  4. Enter your zip code or a city and state.
  5. Click the Go button.
  6. You’ll see a list of the theaters closest to the location you entered. Click on your favorite theaters and click the Add button. You can add up to 5 favorites. (Factors you may want to consider if you have lots of choices: how close the theater is, how easy it is to park, whether there’s public transportation, how many screens, and how comfortable the theater is.)
  7. Use the arrow buttons to move your choices into your preferred order.
  8. Click Save Changes when you are done. (You can always go back and delete a choice, change the order or add a new favorite.)
  9. Now on your Start Page you should see the theaters you chose listed under My Favorite Theaters. If the times aren’t displayed, simply click the display showtimes link. If times are displayed and you want to save space on your page until you’re in movie mode, click hide showtimes.
  10. Click on any movie link to get more information about the film, such as Rating, Running Time, Stars, Director, reviews, and more.
  11. Click on any Play Trailer button to watch the official movie preview (you can watch with Windows Media player or Quicktime).
  12. Click on specific showtimes to buy tickets online (online ticketing is not available for all theaters).

We hope you enjoy some good movies this summer!

Google Reader RIP, MyEarthLink MVP?

Google Reader shutting down.Google Reader is shutting down on July 1.

That’s what I found out (via a pop-up) yesterday when I went to visit Google Reader to research Internet news storied for this blog post.

Because it has been my go-to site for Internet news stories, Google Reader was one of the tabs I set up to automatically open when I start my web browser (the myEarthLink Start Page® and EarthLink Web Mail open in two other tabs).

So it will be missed. But, as we reported last July, Google has been steadily shutting down services for some time now.

What should you do if you’re a Google Reader … reader? We’ll, if you are an EarthLink Internet access subscriber, myEarthLink is a good place to start.

You can very easily customize the page to get local news, business news, technology news, sports, health, political – up to 12 news categories in all. Just make sure you are signed in (with your full EarthLink email address and password), and click the Edit links next to the Local and News Headline sections.

You’ll also have easy access to lots of other customizable content (weather, TV & movie listings, stock quotes, sports scores, etc.) while you’re checking your news. So it’s definitely worth a try. It could turn out to be your MVP (most valuable product).

But as convenient as it is, myEarthLink is not a full RSS reader like Google Reader, so it isn’t a direct replacement if that’s what you are looking for.

There’s buzz today that Digg is working on a replacement for Google Reader. But there are plenty of other ways to do RSS right now.

Feedly is a popular one. It’s available as a browser add-on (for Firefox, Chrome, and Safari) as well as an app for both Android and iOS. They’ve been kind smart enough to provide these Tips for Google Reader users migrating to feedly.

NewsBlur is another that has earned high praise, but it appears the rush of traffic is making their website unavailable today (they must not use EarthLink Business Cloud Hosting), so I won’t link you there now.

Mashable.com has a slide-show with other Google Reader Alternatives.

I have personally enjoyed using Google Currents on all my mobile devices (Android and iOS).

Let us know what your favorite Google Reader alternative is by leaving a comment below.

myEarthLink – How to Personalize Your Start Page

One of the many benefits of being an EarthLink dial-up or high-speed Internet access member is getting your own myEarthlink start page that you can easily customize based on your location and interests.

If you haven’t done so already, this post will so you how quick and easy it is to customize myEarthLink to make it a more convenient and enjoyable page to start your surfing.

myEarthLink - sign in to customize your page

1. Sign In to Get Started
You can’t customize the page if you don’t sign in (that’s how we keep track of what YOU want on YOUR page, after all). Just enter your EarthLink email address and password at the top-left of the page (see screenshot above).

2. Do the Quick Setup
After you sign in for the first time, you’ll land on a Quick Setup page, which, as the name implies, lets you do a quick setup of popular page features. Click the checkboxes next to features you’d like to activate.

Make sure to enter your zip code to get local weather and other local information. The page is by default set up to the Weather theme, which changes how the page looks based on your local weather; you can change that now or try it out and pick a new theme later. Click Take me to myEarthLink when you’re done

3. Delete or Minimize Features
Take a look around your page. It’s made up mostly of boxes with orange titles describing each feature. If you see any feature you know you’re not going to want on the page, click the X on the right side of the bar with the title. That deletes the feature from the page (you can re-activate it later if you change your mind). Another alternative is to minimize features: Click the line (  ) to the left of the X to keep a feature on the page but hide the content. I do that with some features that I only use periodically.

4. Move Features
This is pretty cool: any of the page features you see with a title bar can be moved to another spot on the page. Simply click-and-hold on the title bar with your mouse and drag the feature to another spot on the page. A good first step is to drag all the things you think you’ll want to see most to the top of the page and leave the others you’ll use less frequently on the bottom. I moved News Headlines, Local News, Weather, Sports, and Reminders to the top of mine. Don’t worry if you don’t see Sports or Reminders yet. I’ll get to that next.

5. Add Features
I just mentioned that I had Sports and Reminders near the top of my page; but they are not on myEarthLink by default. You need to add those features yourself. To add any feature you don’t see, simply scroll down until you see the Add a Feature section. Scroll through the list of available features, click on the one you want and then click the Add button. Repeat to add others. By default, the added features will show up on the top right of the page, but you can drag them wherever you want.

6. Edit & Personalize Features
Some features, such as Reminders, aren’t very useful unless you customize them. Any feature bar that says edit in the right corner can be customized in some way. For Local News you can add other zip codes you want to get news for. For News Headlines you can add many different categories of news, such as Business, Technology, Health, Sports and Politics. The My Favorite Theaters feature can be set up to show the movie times at all the local movie theaters you like. And Reminders lets you keep track of birthdays, anniversaries, your to-do list, and all the other important things you don’t want to forget. If you’re not sure what customization options are available for a feature, just click the feature’s edit link and you’ll find out. If you don’t see an edit link, the feature isn’t customizable (most are).

7. Add Your Email
Adding your email to the myEarthLink start page makes it even more convenient. Simply click the edit link on the My Email feature and add your email addresses and password, then choose how many of your most recent messages you want displayed (5 – 10). Repeat these steps to display other accounts (you can even add Gmail and other email accounts if they have IMAP enabled).

8. Search 5 Ways
Don’t forget that there’s a Google-powered search at the top of your myEarthLink page. By default it’s set to do a regular web search. Use the tabs to search for images, to search the EarthLink website only, to find the lowest shopping prices, or to find travel deals.

We hope you enjoy your start page. As always, please let us know how you’re using myEarthLink by leaving a comment below.