Digital TV Switchover Delay Gathers Steam in Congress

by admin January 27, 2009 at 4:44 pm

The Senate has voted to delay for four months the switch to digital TV meant to occur in a mere three weeks, giving President Barack Obama the national breather he sought and setting up a House vote which could occur as early as Tuesday.

Putting off the switch may cause mass confusion, but it will also allow lawmakers to take a last stab at ensuring that a surprisingly large number of analog TV stragglers don’t wake up in 21 days to a snowstorm on every channel of their sets instead of “Regis and Kelly,” “Lost,” and “American Idol.”

Broadcasters are dead-set against any delay, with an essentially ‘enough is enough’ position. Putting off D(igital)-Day would be confusing, what with all those PSAs running on TV advising us that it’s just about here. And then there is the small matter of what the switch is supposed to accomplish: freeing up spectrum for use by wireless companies and public safety agencies.

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