Consumers Union Wants Congress To Delay Digital TV Transition
from the oh-please,-just-get-it-over-with dept
Now, we all agree that the FCC has screwed up the conversion to digital TV for over-the-air TV watchers, especially with the “coupon” program running out of money. But, it’s still pretty ridiculous for Consumers Union to ask Congress to delay the transition (found via Consumers Unions’ newly owned Consumerist).
The transition to digital TV has been delayed for years. It was amazing that we finally got a hard deadline of February 2009 given how many forces were fighting against it. Part of the problem was always some ridiculous sliding scale of when we’d be “ready.” But, a hard deadline was set, and now it’s important to just get it over with. The end result will be much better for consumers, because the old spectrum will finally be put to good use where it can provide an awful lot of value. Yes, the transition coupon program has been poorly run. Yes, it would be better if we figured out a better way (even now) to get converter boxes to people. Yes, there are still a number of people who haven’t gone out and picked up a convertor box. Yes, there will be some confused people who turn on their TV and discover it won’t work, but it’s a very small number of people at this point, and given how much time they’ve had to deal with it, having their TVs not work should be the final kick in the pants to move forward. There’s simply no good reason to delay the transition yet again. Update: Unfortunately, it looks like the incoming Obama administration supports a delay as well.