Coming from someone who’s spent the past year answering DTV questions, I really have to ask… how can so many people ignore the 50,000 ads running on every network telling them how to fix the upcoming situation? Perhaps ignorance is bliss? If that’s the case, those people are about to get a lot of bliss. This Friday (provided Congress doesn’t immediately go insane again and demand a second extension into September) every local station should be flipping the switch on the transmitters around 12:50PM, thereby ending most analog signals across the US. So if your reception goes out after all these notices... sucks to be you. ---
The harsh truth is if you didn’t hitch a ride on the government supported program clear back in early 2008, its gonna cost you money to do something now. Whether it’s a new box you have to painstakingly hook up and troubleshoot, or a paid service you’ll get a massive price-hike on after six months. Yeah, it sucks, but if you’re not used to the idea that late-comers pay extra down the road, you’re gonna hate life after 55. And while we’re on the topic of age, recent reports suggest a large elderly falloff from the switch, either by the fact that they don’t get the idea behind digital conversion or they just don’t care to be suckered in by a government mandate over free media. Not including the small percentage that still own a Philco. Which all over the country would mean a slight loss in ratings, but for those of you on local watch, it might be interesting to pay close attention to how that one holy-owned station's stats do over the next week. Or for that matter, Florida in general.
At the end of all this I believe those who truly love/value/utilize/obsess over TV already made the upgrade, and everyone else just didn’t pay attention… or at least they won't until the screen turns to snow. That is, if they even care about having a signal, I know a lot of people who have given up on television as a traditional medium and just watch shows on Hulu. Or the alternative… reading books. So prepare yourselves for the "digital divide", because if there's any given certainty about this Friday, its that a lot of people will be taking their anger out on the magic box, trying to get it to work again.