Print 59 comment(s) - last by Keeir.. on Jun 18 at 1:38 PM

Ready or not, digital is here to stay

Today is the big day for Americans still clinging to analog TVs and rabbit ears. For those folks that haven't already picked up a DTV converter box to translate the new digital signals, their TVs will now be relegated to useless lumps of plastic, metal, and glass.

The switch to DTV was supposed to take place on February 17, but Congress passed legislation to delay the switch until June 12 under the guidance of President Obama. The delay also gave the government additional time to disperse an additional $650 million USD in DTV coupons to Americans who still hadn't purchased a converter box.

Despite the extra time afforded to Americans to prepare for the DTV switch, additional funds for DTV coupons, and free assistance provided to setup converter boxes, the New York Times reported that roughly 2 million households will still be unprepared for today's switchover.

For those using cable, satellite, or digital TVs with an antenna, you have nothing to worry about -- your TV programming will be unaffected.

For more information on the DTV switch, you can check out the official website here.

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By pwnsweet on 6/12/2009 6:31:07 AM , Rating: 1
I made this exact same comment back in January when it was announced that the switch to DTV would be delayed:

The world is in an economic downturn and people are complaining about a delay of digital TV? The delay should be a few more YEARS in my opinion. The money spent trasitioning everyone to digital TV could be better spent elsewhere to combat the slow economy.

By Screwballl on 6/12/2009 9:40:28 AM , Rating: 1

They should have mandated it years ago BUT not used any of our taxpayer dollars to fund the transition. Thats the part that bugs the hell out of me: using my money to help others do something they should be able to do or afford on their own. They should have forced the TV stations to do it on their own AND if the public was to comply, they would have to spend money out of their own pocket to get the converter boxes... come one, very few people cannot afford $40-50.

Think of the economic gains by making people spend a few dollars of their own, rather than take it from everybody forcefully and give it away.

Another reason why I HATE living in a welfare state/country. I am hoping for a Centrist/Independent that will bring about the "work for welfare" type programs.

By omnicronx on 6/12/2009 10:32:10 AM , Rating: 5
As has been explained time and time again, only a small portion of tax payer money went to funding this project. Almost all of the funding (a few billion not millions) came from selling off parts of the spectrum. As my post below also explains, the markets that will fill the void of these parts of the spectrum will most likely far outweigh the mere 650 million dollars in tax dollars. In fact if these projects are successful, they could probably pull in that amount within a few years from taxed revenue alone.

By Belard on 6/14/2009 8:42:57 PM , Rating: 2
We are not in a welfare country. After the bailouts and such, as of now, the USGovt (US) own about 1%.

Those converter boxes help stimulate the economy. All those people who are NOT able to watch TV are NOT able to see the TV ADs and buy crap! :)

But you know what... I think the TV industry (broadcasters) should chip in and help buy those converters.

Most of the 1million left are: disabled, elderly who cannot afford the converter boxes and most likely foreigners. Of course, the FUN will be explaining to Grandpa how to operate the convert box... :(

Okay.. channel 8 is now 8.1 8.2 8.3, what?

By omnicronx on 6/12/2009 10:02:42 AM , Rating: 2
You do realize that almost all of the money used for this project was raised by selling off the parts of the UHF spectrum. I understand its all pooled money, but in the end the revenue generated from opening up the spectrum to new markets will far outweigh the money being put into it, which will stimulate the economy far more than any bailout ever could. Furthermore the additional 650 million that was required to make the last bunch of rebates available is a drop in the bucket compared to the rest of the bailouts that were given out.

By Oregonian2 on 6/13/2009 12:11:55 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, it was very profitable for the government. The coupons were a minor expense.

"Well, we didn't have anyone in line that got shot waiting for our system." -- Nintendo of America Vice President Perrin Kaplan
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