Feb 14, 2007  •  Post A Comment

The Consumer Electronics Association, the National Association of Broadcasters and the National Cable and Telecommunications Association are joining together in a public service campaign for the digital TV transition amid some Congressional suggestions that consumers aren’t well aware of the February 2009 change.

The three groups, each of which has been promising to promote the transition, in letters sent to congressional leaders on Tuesday said they will now work jointly through PSA ads, in-store displays and a Web site and that they won’t wait for 2009 to begin the effort.

“Our goal is to ensure that no American loses the ability to view over-the-air television signals due to a lack of accurate information about the transition,” says the letter, signed by CEA President & CEO Gary Shapiro, NAB President & CEO David Rehr, and NCTA President & CEO Kyle McSlarrow.

“These efforts will focus on developing simple, powerful messages about the consumer benefits of digital technology and actions that consumers should take to maintain their access to over-the-air television.”

Aside from touting the transition, the groups will also promote the availability of government coupons to ease the costs of buying converters to watch the channels on analog sets.

House Energy & Commerce Committee Chairman John Dingell, D-Mich., who has been critical of the lack of information provided, praised the initiative.

“The upcoming transition from analog to digital television broadcasting will considerably disrupt nearly 21 million American households dependent on over-the-air television, and millions of other Americans who subscribe to pay services but also use over-the-air sets,” he said.

“The most recent Congress established the transition date, yet failed to ensure adequate consumer education. For this reason, I am particularly pleased that the broadcasting, cable and consumer electronics industries are joining to educate consumers. I will closely monitor both public- and private-sector efforts to ensure that no American household loses its television signal.”

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