Much Ado Over DTV

There’s still well over a year to go before the national transition to all-digital OTA broadcasts, but it seems everyone is determined to show a “serious” commitment in getting the public informed about the issue. Circuit City has just announced new education initiatives including in-store pamphlets and advertising supplements. Best Buy is dropping analog TVs from its shelves altogether. (I guess figuring that warning stickers aren’t enough for attention-deficit Americans…) Meanwhile, the National Association of Broadcasters is putting in place a six-part DTV education plan at a cost of $697 million.

Since one study showed that as of March more than 60% of Americans were not aware of the analog shut-off date, I have no doubt that awareness campaigns are needed. However, for the other 40% of us already aware of the DTV D-Day, it looks like a tiresome 16 months ahead. And this is before we even get to the rash of converter boxes sure to hit the market soon. (CES 2008?)

2 thoughts on “Much Ado Over DTV”

  1. It would help if the media would make some sense in their reporting. Back in February, many news outlets were reporting that selling video equipment without a digital tuner would be illegal at the end of the month. Now they are reporting the Best Buy story without a word about the contradiction to what was reported previously.

  2. Excellent point, S1. I wonder if they’re referring to television with both ATSC and NTSC tuners or if they’re referring to left over stock of ATSC televisions? Also one has to wonder at the motivation behind Best Buy’s press release – which I don’t think is really about dropping analog television products, but about supporting and selling these DTV converter boxes and of course getting coverage for being progressive in supporting digital TV. Mission accomplished?

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