Congress turns on analog night light


The House has seconded the Senate, approving a bill which would allow television stations to keep an analog signal up and running past the 2/17/09 DTV deadline in order to direct left-behind analog-only consumers where to go for help. All that’s required now is an autograph from President Bush. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) shepherded the bill through the Senate, and Lois Capps (D-CA) guided it through the House, each with the help of bipartisan supporters. The bill would instruct the FCC to set up and implement a program by 1/15/09.

NAB’s Dennis Wharton said, "Coupled with our billion dollar campaign to educate Americans on the digital TV transition, this timely legislation will give broadcasters one final resource to ensure that no TV viewer is left behind due to insufficient information. We applaud Congress and thank Sen. Rockefeller and Rep. Capps for their leadership on this issue."

RBR/TVBR observation: This is pure common sense. The trick now will be to make sure there are knowledgeable people available for left-behind consumers to speak to.