DTV Switch: Many Stations to Broadcast Dual Signals Through June

Feb 5, 2009  •  Post A Comment

CBS, Fox, NBC, Telemundo and ABC have all agreed to keep both analog and digital signals airing for their owned and operated stations through the new June 12 date set for the DTV transition.
Acting Federal Communications Commission Chairman Michael Copps made the announcement at his first FCC meeting as acting chairman. He also said most of the stations owned by Hearst-Argyle and Gannett will be airing dual signals.
For TVWeek’s comprehensive coverage of the digital television transition, visit the DTV Switch Navigator page.
The FCC said stations wanting to switch to digital-only on Feb. 17 would have to notify the agency and run a month’s worth of public service announcements to inform viewers in the short time before Feb. 17.
The FCC also said that stations that don’t switch by Feb. 17 will have to give viewers a full 30 days of notice, meaning no additional switches will be allowed until March 14 at the earliest.
Stations are scrambling to adjust to a delay in the switch to all-digital signals to June 12 from the transition’s original Feb. 17 date. A bill providing for the delay is awaiting the signature of President Barack Obama, who requested the pause after being elected.
While proponents of the delay say going forward with the Feb. 17 date would leave too many people without TV, 90% of television industry readers surveyed by TVWeek oppose the delay, citing the additional cost of dual signals and the potential for consumer confusion.
Mr. Copps made his comments today as the FCC announced procedures for stations that are planning to switch to a digital-only signal on the originally envisioned Feb. 17 switchover date.
Mr. Copps said that while Congress wants the FCC to ease the way for stations to switch over, the FCC reserves the right to deny requests from stations to switch to digital-only early “if they do not serve the public interest.”
Mr. Copps said the FCC “is nowhere where it needs to be” on the digital transition. He said he was pleased Congress acted to push the date back to June and encouraged broadcasters to base their decision as to when they switch on what would be in the public’s best interest.
(Editor: Baumann)


  1. Affilates may be a different story. TV stations in WV, Sen. Rockefeller’s own state, are not following his lead; all major network TV stations in the largest market, Charleston-Huntington, are going ahead on Feb. 17, including Sinclair, Gray, and WV Media Network stations. All four WV Media Network stations gave 30 days notice to the FCC in January, stating the legislation would make no difference. WVVA (Bluefield, NBC) stated earlier today on its website that “most of the broadcast television stations in WV have decided to continue with the original date… our analog signal will discontinue at 12:30 pm on February 17th.”

  2. Here in Chicago, CBS-owned WBBM-TV – which I can’t get (or nobody can get, from what I heard) on an OTA digital TV – won’t be able to switch to digital Channel 12 since their digital channel is on 3 until June 12, meaning no “Big Bang Theory” or “Survivor” or other WBBM programming in OTA HD for anyone in the Windy City until then.
    And this delay is supposed to help whom again?

  3. I know for a fact that some broadcasters will keep their analog transmitters on-the-air until June, even though they’d really prefer to shut them off in February. Why???? Because they don’t want certain segments of society to view “The Company” in a negative light – kinda like the morons in congress who voted for the extension to begin with.
    This delay will cost SEVERAL million dollars. Furthermore some people may loose their jobs as managers struggle to stay within budget.
    All of this because a handful of people don’t understand or care about digital TV… Well, guess what? Come June 12th there will still be people who don’t understand or care about digital TV.
    I certainly hope Congress does a better job on the other issues they have before them, otherwise we’re totally screwed!

  4. The CBS affiliates WIBW, KWCH, KBSH, and KBSL located in Kansas are all still terminating their CBS analog signals on 2/17/09 according to every email or personal conversation that I have had or received from them directly. I have also been informed that our PBS station in Kansas, KOOD, will also be switching on 2/17/09.

  5. Some stations have already shut down analog operations. WLVT in Allentown, PA and WOLF in Hazelton are two examples. According to the FCC, 160+ stations are already shut down on analog and another 60 are expected to join them by EOD 2/17/09.

  6. DEAR: KInd hearted hearts out there,
    I personally have no email so I use the email of my friends with permission of course. YOU NEED TO HELP!!! PLEASE!!!!
    My friend Leah Diaz has a rare Vasculitis. She cannot live the 6 coldests months of winter in Canada. Even when in a VERY warm home. She goes into strokes, she cannot breath and walk or talk. The M.R. Is of her brain show MORE then 12 ruptured small ruptured veins!!!
    For 5 yrs now, they have managed one credit but now with a debt of over $30,000. When they arrive this April the 25th, 2009 they will need to declare bankruptcy and loose EVRYTHING!!! PLUS HAVE NO WAY TO ESCAPE WINTER !!!
    The caring hearts and people out there need to know so they can HELP!!!!
    EACH year she escapes winter it saves her life for one more year!!! It costs her $5,000 to escape one winter, planes, apartment for 6 months and some medical needs!!!!
    IT´S NOT AS IF SHE DID NOT TRY TO GET HELP!!! She contacted many M.P.P.s such as Pat Hoy, Van Kersesten, Peter Kormos in fact for the first 4 yrs, they were allowed out of country for 6 months only 3 months because they were on O:D.S.P. The Diaz´s knew but would not return because they knew it was deadly. O.D.S.P. would cut their income. They suffered a GREAT, GREAT deal. When Pat Hoy found out it was going to the media he graciously granted the 6 months out of country!!!! The Nrain Injury Association Of Chatham-Kent helped in making it public in the newspaper this helped for part of the plane ticket money one year. The manager Michelle Suiter Of B.I.A.C.K wrote letters to O.h.I.P. so did Charlene at Pat Hoy´s office, they seem to be able to do next to nothing!
    ONE WINTER and one year of life costs $5,000 plane fairs, apartment for 6 months and transportation as well as some medical needs not covered!
    Leah is WAY to shy to go on camera for need for herself. But if you were to be at the Detroit Airport on April 25th, 2009 Delta Airline coming from Bogotta. She would be touched that people heard and care and would speak to you.
    PLEASE!!! HELP!!! HER NOW!!!!!
    Tamarah Somers

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