Senate votes to delay DTV

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Again.
"[Jan 29th] For the second time, the Senate unanimously passed a bill Thursday night to delay the transition to digital television by four months in order to give consumers more time to get ready. "
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/01/29/AR2009012904496.html?wprss=rss_nation
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it wil be passed by house too.
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And it will need to be passed yet again as the delay will only serve to give those who have been stupid and ignored the deadline will do exactly the same again and again. There will always be a large percentage who will wait until after the event to do anything and will then whine about how they didn't know. Ignorance and procrastination should not be rewarded.
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BobR wrote:

Not entirely. Like most government programs, the switchover scheme had the seeds of its destruction built-in by clueless politicians.
Here's the original plan and how it's worked out:
1. Issue coupons to recompense people who, through no fault of their own, would otherwise have to spend precious money. 2. Issue the coupons with an expiration date (!). 3. Not enough convertor boxes were available to meet the initial demand. 4. An unknown, but probably large, number of coupons expired. 5. Government can't issue more coupons because they might be out of money (they won't know until all the redeemed coupons get back to them). There's no way to know how many coupons expired before they could be redeemed.
I know two people who are just the opposite of procrastinators; they applied for their coupons immediately after the program started. They got their coupons, but there were no convertor boxes to be had for love or money*. The coupons expired before their local stores got sufficient stock.
My neighbors re-applied**, but there's a 2 million coupon backlog while the agency awaits more funding from Congress.
Why-oh-why Congress just doesn't say "Ignore the coupon expiration dates," is beyond comprehension.
-------- * Not exactly true: There was one store offering boxes for $80 or $40 + coupon.
** They don't know whether re-applying will work. They may have been permanently barred from getting replacement coupons, else what would prevent people from getting FOUR coupons?
Maybe there's a form to fill out or something.
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Got the coupons. Got the converter boxes. I'm on cable. Always have backups ;)
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On Fri, 30 Jan 2009 10:42:21 -0600, HeyBub wrote:

I have a hard time believing this. Fact is, they didn't mail the coupons until many retailers had boxes in stock. The letter with the coupons specifically stated this fact.
I applied for the coupons within a few days of when they began taking applications (January 2008). Like everyone else who applied early, they didn't mail my coupons until a number of retailers (I specifically remember Radio Shack, Wal-Mart, and Best Buy) had the boxes on the store shelves. There were plenty on the shelves when I pick up my boxes.
My only complaint was that by applying early I got first generation boxes, since the coupons were "use it or lose it". I ended up having a another coupon sent to a friend's house and a got a second generation Zenith with analog pass through and a slightly better tuner.
--
Tony Sivori
Due to spam, I\'m filtering all Google Groups posters.
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Tony Sivori wrote:

I got my coupons a couple of weeks ago.
I immediately went to two places (Best Buy and Cohn's). Both had converters but wanted you to add a little vig to the sale. I heard that a local food store chain had the converters at no additional cost. So I went to the neighborhood branch.
But I was starting now to worry, The manager said "We're out," "Since just this morning we've been out" "But we have turnips, figs, and trout," "And catelopes and curry."
Before I bolted, feeling sorrow and run back the way the way that I had come, I paused to buy a loaf of bread, And took it with me home to bed, And ate it every crumb. I'll try again tomorrow.
Finally found the converters at a store a few miles away.
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"HeyBub" wrote:

You wrote a poem detailing your experience of attempting to purchase a digital convertor box.
That's pretty neat.
Thanks. :)
Jon
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Jon Danniken wrote:

Actually it's from an earlier poem that begins:
Willie walked with happy heart, A shiny quarter in his hand, He went to buy an ice-cream cone, A triple-decker ice-cream cone, He marched quite gaily all alone Up to the ice-cream stand.
"I'd like an ice-cream cone" he said. The waitress spoke and said "That's nice "And what will be your flavor please, "We've thirty-six varities, "You must be more precise!"
"I'd like a chocolate," he said After making up his mind, "We've no chocolate, sir" said she "But we have cumquat and green pea, "And watermelon rind."
Willie could not get a word in now, So swiftly did the waitress speak, "We have gumbo, bean, and Spanish Rice, "And pumpkin fudge "(You'll find that nice), "Potato, fish, and leek."
and so on.
Anyway, it seemed to fit. Apologies if I got carried away...
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well heres some real numbers Approximate number of people unable to receive any channels after digital conversion 5.6 mil
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On Fri, 30 Jan 2009 18:17:59 -0800 (PST), " snipped-for-privacy@aol.com"

They may be numbers, but they are not real. Where did the numbers come from, and by what method were they obtained?
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote in wrote:

population maps compared to TV coverage maps?
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Jim Yanik
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That wouldn't give even an approximately correct answer. How can you tell on that map, which houses have cable, dish or antenna in use? Then there are those who don't watch TV at all.
Add to that, the fact that the broadcasters aren't even exactly sure where the precise perimeter of their coverage will be until they go live and then do a lot of testing.
The real number of people who have TV reception capability over the air may INCREASE after the switchover. For every Hallerb, there may be 20,000 people who see BETTER reception.
Hallerb may ultimately end up with better reception. there is NO ONE who can tell you for certain at this point.
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The maps are government generated.
Up till recently they broke down numbers state by state, but the feds removed those numbers
Anyhow heres a link
http://www.tvfool.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&idP&Itemid &limit=1&limitstart=1
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote in wrote:

data from cable/dish companies? by percentage of cable penetration by zipcode,referenced to total households.Few households are totally without TVs these days.

well,those don't count,in any case.

Which they HAVE been doing;the broadcasters aren't going to begin DTV on Feb.17 without having thoroughly tested their DTV setup in advance.Broadcasters have been simulcasting analog and DTV.
Computer simulations can do very well in regard to predicting coverage areas,BTW. Broadcasters know their antenna lobe patterns,they map them so they can orient to optimize coverage for their intended viewing area.

Doubtful,as DTV coverage areas are all SMALLER than the older analog. Fringe areas will be hard hit.(until each station installs repeaters after losing ratings points and being hit in their advertising revenue.)

one thing IS certain;I can't get WESH-TV Ch.2 on DTV,and that's the channel the Super Bowl is on tomorrow. :-(
tried relocating the antenna to a different part of the apartment,no joy. Ch.2 DTV is still on VHF...all the UHF channels come in.
so,it's back to analog,which I CAN receive.
--
Jim Yanik
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Jim Yanik wrote: ...

... Well, not according to the maps in the areas I've looked at -- most are actually slightly larger expected coverage areas although there are some that are more directional and do show lobe effects in the DTV map not present for the same transmitter in analog.
As for adding translators and upping fringe coverage, I have serious doubts any significant numbers of stations will be doing that--the numbers will just be too small to make enough difference to the revenue to justify the cost I expect.
--
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yeah and more likely the net stations would prefer you watch on satellite or cable, both of which pay the $ to rebroadcast their station to you...........
futher adverisers probably conclude the OTA ONLY viewers have little money to buy their goods.
lastly DVRs digital video recorders that can skip past commewrcials are changing dramatically the income of the stations
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there weren't any when I was at Wal-Mart and Radio Shack early on, even though I went back several times. I finally got them at Target close to the deadline.
Cheri
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Cheri wrote:

More of your coupon money went to IBM than expected (contracted) ;-)
http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2008-09-19-DigitalTV_N.htm
There is a fed site that had the coupon score card, around June last year more than half the issued coupons expired unused. In July, we were lucky to find an "unclaimed" RCA box at Walmart that someone failed to pick up before noon, after they were called that the shipment came in that morning. June and July, you had to have your name on a list for them.
$70 converters is the only thing that kept Rat Shak in business last year. More retailers signed up after seeing there was real money is selling boxes. The whole coupon master plan is in the federal register. It's funny that everyone is using the advertising grants to sell their own cable and sat service as a public service that you need to sign up before your lousy antenna service quits. AARP even suggests you join them before your tv quits.
I'll post the score card url if i find it again.
-- larry / dallas
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larry wrote:

Here's the score card
https://www.dtv2009.gov/Stats.aspx
and here's the page before the score card, it has the program details. There are spiffs for unused program funds. Theoretical bonuses for a well run program, wait a minute, in government!
http://www.ntia.doc.gov/dtvcoupon/index.html
have fun, ymmv
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