DTV postponed, maybe

So the deadline for DTV was extended to day to June something, and Pres. Obama is expected to sign the bill, especially considering what he said a couple weeks ago on the subject.
But what deadline is this? It's the deadline that stations are *required* to stop transmitting analog. Even before this law, they were already allowed to stop transmitting analog earlier than this, even though I don't think any stations did.
So WBFF, Channel 45, in Baltimore says it's still going to stop on Feb 17th as sceheduled. It's up to the stations now, and whether they think they will antagonize viewers and lose viewership.
There were two other good parts to this law, one that something will be done to get out more coupons, including I think coupons for those who now have expired coupons, because the coupons expired 30 days after receipt. (In my case I need a second box, although I hear that a lot of coupons were ordered by people who decided they didn't need them, but wanted to get them when they weren't sure. )
I think the law may also have authorized more money, since the number of couposns used used up all the money available. And to pay for the office that does this to run for 3 more months, though maybe at reduced load.
And I think there was a third section but I forget what it was.
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At least one of the local stations in Spokane Wa also say they will change over on Feb 17
Harry K
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Harry K wrote:

Coupons expire in 90 days, those that were not used were returned to the "money pool" for more new issues. IBM is the contractor for the coupon program.
wednesday feb 4 4pm edt coupons: households approved 27850352 requested 51713600 mailed 47580850 expired 14692493 redeemed 22623231 on wait list 3713234 active 10265126 redemption rate 53.9%
https://www.dtv2009.gov/Stats.aspx -------------------------------------
One of the problems is with all the contracts out to tower workers to rearrange the antenna arrays, feed cables and transmitter gear on Feb. 17.
After reading thru the fcc document database, it's obvious tv broadcast service coverage will look a lot more like cellphone service coverage maps after the change. Analog has a wide gradient from tower to the edge of 100 miles, where an analog signal still has a usable though snowy picture and hissy sound. The digital signal has a pronounced drop off point around 40 miles where the digital stream redundancy and error correction cannot reconstruct tolerable picture and sound. The fcc lab studies suggested the digital coverage will be at best 80% of the previous analog coverage with what consumers currently use for a receiving antenna. External gain or amplified antennas could make up the difference, or improvements in digital compression and error correction. A few consumer groups think there will be many remote areas of the US that will go from some broadcast TV coverage to none. A remote area is also one with lots of obstruction, like buildings, trees, hills, and mountains, to the tv signal. Some fcc urban test locations (Baltimore) had weaker signals than rural locations 25 miles away.
Be interesting to see what happens.
-- larry/dallas
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larry wrote:

And in a mountainous area such as where I live each station has at least 5 or 6 translators to serve poor coverage areas. All are currently analog and will be converted over at the cutoff date.
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wrote:

Certainly will be. I'm in Baltiomre and my brother is in DAllas.

Ar you sure? I thought some/all relay transmitters were exceptions to the rule. Along with some low power stations. There is some webpage that explains this and even iirc says where they are, but I don't know what it is.
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yeah its next years superbowl, the quarterback drops back its a long pass
lost signal............. wow it was the play of a lifetime heres a replay...... lost signal.
voters will be pissed
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If your life revolves around a game score I suggest you up your tranq level.
Harry K
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wrote:

The way the economy is going, voters will have eaten the TV as main course for Thanksgiving.
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The House bill authorizes $650Mil more for coupons. Which is a good example of what's wrong with this spending bill. Converters are already selling for less than the $40 coupons, either on sale at local retailers, on Ebay, etc. The coupons made some sense 18 months ago, when the converters were $80. Now, essentially people can get them for free courtesy of the taxpayers and I'm sure plenty of people will be buying them just to have sit around on the slim chance they might need one someday. Or they can get them for free and turn around and sell them on Ebay for $30. Govt waste at it's best.
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man, you sure beat a subject to death.
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mm wrote:

All the stations in my area, So OR., met together and decided to make the change on Feb 17. It seems that the vast majority of stations across the country will also go ahead and convert on Feb 17. Kevin
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It makes sense for broadcasters to stop ASAP,because it costs them about $10,000-$20,000 per month for electricity for the analog transmitter. They'll balance that against loss of ad revenue due to a smaller viewership.
--
Jim Yanik
jyanik
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4.ffdc.sbc.com:

I thought per the new bill, it's not entirely up to the broadcasters to just shut down NTSC on Feb 17, even if they want to. I read where it also required the FCC to certify that the particular market served by those stations was ready for the transition.
Of course, that's another fine example of govt thinking, isn't it? First, I'm not sure exactly why one area would be ready and another not. Second, how is the FCC supposed to determine this? It would seem to me that it could easily take longer than from now till June for the FCC to figure that out. First step would likely be to commission another $2 mil study for each market that wanted to convert early to figure out if they were ready. No, wait. More likely first step is to commission a $2 mil study to figure out what criteria to use and how to go about figuring out whether a market is ready or not.
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Jim Yanik wrote: ...

If the former were the primary criterion far more would have pulled the plug on analog before now.
For the latter, I suspect that will have very little bearing on the decision -- 2 of the 4 here have already running promo's I've seen that they're still switching 2/17. I'm sure the others have as well; I've just not seen them.
I expect virtually everybody will go on as they've already planned to do new bill or no...
--
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Had an announcement just last night that all stations in Spokane Wa had agreed to switch Feb 17 but yesterdayone of the majors backed out and will wait. Always one dumb shit in the crowd.
Harry K
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All the major network owned&operated stations caved in and agreed to hold off switching. Nothing like kowtowing to the political party in power....
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The site, https://www.dtv2009.gov/ is now saying "9 days to end of analog broadcasts".
--
Mark Lloyd
http://notstupid.laughingsquid.com
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Things are quite fluid now - a screwup you can always expect from politicians who make decisions based on emotion and vote potential instead of what's best for the country.
The major network Owned & Operated stations which essentially cover all the major urban areas have all said they will keep their analog transmitters operational until June.
The FCC is now saying they won't approve shutting down analog between now and then if all stations in a market want to switch. They want to see at least one stay analog.
Some stations have been keeping their analog transmitter limping along with no maintenance for quite a while now. It remains to be seen if they can hang on until June.
In short - a major unnecessary screw up.
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Robert Neville wrote:

Give me a brake, they haven't done that for years now.
It's how much money can they stuff in their back pockets or get for consulting fees later. And it now appears, not bothering to pay taxes on those gains.
"It's not about the money" It's ALWAYS about the money. ;-)

Our government at work!
-l
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