Television: June 2009 Archives

It's been a long few days for fans of the ABC network in the Marquette market as WBUP TV 10 has been off the air since Monday while they complete a move of the station from the Marquette Mall to a new location in Ishpeming.

Engineers are hopeful the station will resume broadcasting in advance of tonight's game one of the NBA Finals.

 

Did you hear? Friday is DTV day!

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There will be no shortage of stories on the upcoming transition to digital television over the next week as the clock ticks closer to Friday, June 12th. Here's a sample of some recent coverage from across the state:

Kalamazoo Gazette:

The boxes are still stacked high at the Best Buy store in Portage. And if those who need one don't know about the switch to digital television broadcasts yet, chances are good they won't know until their TVs go fuzzy on Friday. That's the day on which all full-power television stations nationwide are required to have made the switch from analog to digital broadcasts. It is nearly four months after an original February deadline. "I think people that were hot under the collar to get one have picked them up by now," Mark Cassar, a customer solutions manager at the Best Buy store, said of digital converter boxes... Television broadcasts go fully digital on Friday (Sun, 6/7)

 

WOOD-TV:

After talking about it for more than a year, the switch to Digital Television is upon us all. At 10 a.m. this Friday, June 12, television stations around the country -- including WOOD TV8 -- will switch off their analog transmitters for good. The era of digital transmission begins at that moment. Mike Laemers, the Chief Engineer for WOOD TV8, said viewers will see the 10 a.m. program "and they'll never know anything happened." That is, if you have Digital TV, or an older TV with cable or satellite, or you have a converter box. But if you have an old analog TV and haven't done any of that, the only thing you'll see on your screen is snow. Your TV watching days will be over until you take action... The DTV era is upon us (Fri, 6/5)

 

WZZM-TV:

WZZM 13 and the other analog television stations in West Michigan will make the digital transition on June 12, 2009 at 10:00am. If you watch local television on an analog TV set with an external antenna, you will need to install a converter box. These converter boxes will convert the digital signals back into analog signals. If you have cable, satellite or telco video service, these providers will do this conversion for you. WZZM 13 Phone Bank: WZZM 13 will have a phone bank staffed... Are you ready for digital television? (Fri, 6/5)

 

Jackson Citizen-Patriot:

.. Worth Noting: Friday is TV transition day (Sun, 6/7)

 

Media outlets across the state continue to cover the digital transition for television scheduled for this Friday:

Macomb Daily:

Time is winding down to the June 12 deadline for the national switch to digital television, but officials say some metro Detroiters are still unprepared. The Federal Communications Commission has determined that 3 percent of people in and around Detroit and up to 3.3 million people nationwide -- are not set up for the switch. The 3 percent figure is down from a much higher number when the transition was first planned for Feb. 17, following the passing of the Digital Transition and Public Safety Act of 2005. But President Barack Obama on Feb. 11 signed the Digital Television Delay Act, citing that too many people were unprepared... Deadline nears for digital TV switch (Mon, 6/8)

 

Detroit News:

John and Phyllis Peterson thought they were ready for television's digital transition but found out quite inconveniently they are not. While attempting to watch a program on the local PBS affiliate, WTVS-TV (Channel 56), the Livonia couple recently discovered their digital TV set was no longer picking up this digitally updated station. This wasn't supposed to happen. The clerk at the big-box store where they bought their TV a few years ago said the Petersons "shouldn't need anything." What he didn't tell them is that some "digital ready" televisions don't come with tuners and still need converter boxes and powerful antennas at the very least, and cable at the most, just like their analog cousins... Digital TV: It's time to convert (Mon, 6/8)

 

WWJ AM 950 Detroit:

There's less than a week left before the switch to digital TV. The switch is taking place on June 12 and after that, all analog TV sets won't get a signal. But many Detroit families still haven't applied for their $40 coupons. They can still apply up until July 31. But they won't get their coupons in time to make the transition... Are You Ready for DTV Transition? (Sun, 6/7)

 

Lansing State Journal:

By Friday, the last of the full-power television stations must dump their analog signals for digital. Stations such as WLAJ-TV Channel 53, WSYM-TV Fox 47 and WLNS-TV Channel 6 have yet to convert. WKAR-TV Channel 23 and WILX-TV Channel 10 switched months ago. Together they received fewer than 1,500 complaints, representing less than 1 percent of their total viewership and suggesting that the mandated conversion may go smoothly. Concerns about whether poor and rural Americans will be left behind have largely evaporated, according to local officials. As a precaution emergency officials throughout mid-Michigan are finding new ways to get emergency messages - such as tornado warnings - to the public through means other than TV... Mid-Mich. ready for digital TV, officials say (Mon, 6/8)

 

WKZO AM 590 Kalamazoo:

Television stations that haven't already switched off their analog transmitters will turn them off for good Friday at 10AM. U.S. statistics suggest 3.5% of all local viewers are not ready for digital TV. WOOD-TV Chief Engineer Mike Leamers reminds viewers who don't want to buy a digital TV they will need a converter box, and that may not be the end of it. "There's a lot of people that have digital TV's and converter boxes who are still having technical problems getting us, and that's going to be the biggest problem to overcome," Laemers said. A set of rabbit ears probably won't be enough in this area... DTV deadline is approaching (Mon, 6/8)

 

The digital TV transition is finally here. While television stations work diligently to make the last adjustments before throwing the switch to turn off their analog television signals, citizens across the state are prepared for the transition; nearly all have connected their converter boxes, adjusted their antennas or switched to a paid service. Some viewers purchased a new digital television with a built in tuner and now report to be ready with remote in hand to rescan for all of their favorite channels.

An Michigan Association of Broadcasters survey showed that nearly 100% of those viewers contacted are aware of the digital transition and the latest Nielson survey indicates that only a little over 2% of households in the Detroit market are totally unprepared. Detroit was the only Michigan market surveyed by Nielson. Metro Detroit is the largest over-the-air viewing market in Michigan, so the Michigan Association of Broadcasters (MAB) is confident that most people throughout the rest of the state are ready for the revolutionary change in the way viewers receive their TV signals.

"Michigan Broadcasters did a wonderful job informing Michigan citizens about the digital transition," said Karole White, President and CEO of the MAB. "There has been a tremendous amount of planning and implementation put forth by everyone involved, and a successful transition will be the pay-off."

Michigan television stations lead the nation in educating the public. Detroit stations set an example for other states with the implementation of the first "Test Your TV Tuesdays" and other markets followed holding simultaneous DTV soft tests to let viewers know if their TV's were ready for the digital transition.

The MAB and member television stations have spent the past year holding DTV workshops, speaking to community groups and at public gatherings serving as a resource for all information pertaining to the TV transition. The MAB established a Michigan specific DTV website www.michigandtv.com and with the help of our DTV partners, Don-Lors Electronics, we established the premier DTV information source, the Michigan DTV Helpline, 888-MI-DTV-09. Don-Lors Electronics used their 40 phone lines and their own company operators and technicians to answer local questions, as well as providing walk-in help and in-home assistance to needy seniors.

The Detroit Public Libraries utilized all 24 of its branches to help Detroit citizens with hands-on demonstrations, walk-in assistance and information resources on how to connect and operate a digital converter box and how to find the best antenna for specific locations.

"The DTV transition is the largest simultaneous change in technology in our history," said White. "We ask everyone for their patience during this change. It has been a long and at times very challenging journey to reach this point, we are confident that the transition will go as planned and encourage those seeking help or information to call the Michigan DTV Helpline at 1-888-643-8809."

For information or assistance call the Michigan DTV Helpline at 1-888-643-8809. The Michigan DTV Helpline will be open 24 hours through Sunday, June 14, 2009.

 

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Television category from June 2009.

Television: May 2009 is the previous archive.

Television: July 2009 is the next archive.

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