Tate bows out, commissioners map DTV future


There were nothing but kind words for FCC Commissioner Deborah Taylor Tate, who attended her final FCC Open Meeting 12/31/08. She was widely praised for spearheading various FCC efforts, prominently including her advocacy for children. Her ability to find middle ground on tough issues and collegiality even when there was no middle ground to be had was also widely praised.

In her exiting remarks, she thanked all of her 8th Floor colleagues, and called for a light regulatory approach. She said this was particularly the case for emerging information tech businesses, which she said could be an economic driver and provider of good jobs, as well as a provider of green solutions as the US strives to improve the environment.

The commissioners were unanimous in their praise of the digital contour maps put out by the FCC at the end of 2008, and urged television stations with changing coverage areas to warn their viewers. Jonathan Adelstein added that more needs to be done in general. Speaking from Phoenix where he was on a leg of the FCC’s DTV road show, he said he was learning things about the transition every day, and said, ““I’m afraid that what I’m learning is that we’re far from where we need to be…”

RBR/TVBR observation: We’d like to thank Commissioner Tate, who in her going-away speech actually took the time to compliment the trade press in general for being a quick study and for effectively getting word of FCC activities out there. Thanks, Commissioner – good luck in all your future endeavors.