All DTV, all the time as countdown begins


With three weeks to go before analog over-the-air television makes its final curtain call, the NAB has spots ready to go for stations still operating in analog to count down to the deadline. The goal is to activate as many procrastinators as possible before 6/12/09.

At 0:15 seconds in length, the spots should be easy to work into the schedule. As NAB explains, they “mark the remaining three weeks, two weeks, seven days, six days, five days, four days, three days, two days and less than 24 hours from the deadline.” They are available for viewing here:

Other spots highlighting converter boxes, antennae and other matters will also be in the mix.

The NAB has further produced an educational documentary which fits what consumers need to know into a 30 minute package. Stations still broadcasting an analog signal are required to air it at least one time before DTV-Day. There’s yet another video ready to go for night-light stations (those that will keep the analog signal up after the deadline to provide information for those left behind). Both videos are available in English or Spanish.

“America’s broadcasters are pulling out all the stops during these final weeks to ensure viewers are ready for the June 12 deadline,” said NAB Vice President of DTV Transition Jonathan Collegio. “This critical on-air campaign culminates our industry’s billion-dollar education effort to educate consumers about this historic switch.”

Meanwhile, last week’s DTV “soft test” drew a single-day record of 55,000 calls to the FCC’s national help line. More than 125 markets across the country participated in Tuesday’s test, which demonstrated to viewers whether or not they were prepared for the DTV final transition set for June 12th.

The FCC reported that the three most common issues from the calls were:

1. People seeing informaiton about the government program for converter boxes (51%).

2. People with DTV reception issues (15%).

3. People who needed instructions on how to install a digital converter box (10%).

The Chicago market had the most calls, 1,310, followed by New YOrk at 1,277 and Dallas-Ft. Worth 764.