Well I sent another email to Ken and Bishop -- for a reference here is what I have sent them in the past and their response.
by the way I am trying to get the email address for the "upper" management at Gannett - the parent company of First Coast news (ABC/NBC) -- here is a webpage with their names, but no emails ---http://www.gannett.com/map/management/gboc.html
I am guessing the bugs are still being worked out, but I am also guessing that since we are not receiving the Baltimore vs Tennessee Game in Hd we here in the First Coast will not be receiving the second game and probably not the Sugar Bowl in HD like the rest of the country. Very Disappointing.
I realize that 720p is not a common format but it is also not a uncommon format (ESPN utilizes the 720p format as well as a few others)
New technology or not, bugs in a system should never take this long to work out.
From: Ellison, Bishop [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Monday, December 01, 2003 1:40 PM
To: Jeffrey ; Ktonning@firstcoastnews.com
Subject: RE: ABC 25 - Digital Station 10 - Jacksonville,FL
Thank you for your comments about WJXX-DT, our ABC digital outlet in Jacksonville. WTLV-TV (analog NBC), WJXX-TV (analog ABC), WTLV-DT (digital NBC) and WJXX-DT (digital ABC) are all switched under automation control from our studios in Jacksonville. We employ a team of operators and engineers to monitor and oversee our technical operations. It their job to ensure that our transmissions comply with the FCC regulations and our internal technical standards. That function includes switching away from a source that does not meet those standards.
As you so correctly noted, HDTV is a new technology and as such, the reliability and stability of network transmissions is not as good as we see in the analog world. ABC is the only network to use the 720 progressive HD standard and more development work has been put into the more popular 1080 interlaced standard. As we have worked to resolve the HD issues, we have noticed that the ABC HD transmission is more prone to failure than the NBC HD feed. Also, remote or live telecasts such as parades and football present more challenges than in-studio, taped events. That is not to say that taped event do not have problems from time to time, but it seems that live events are more susceptible to failures.
In the event of an HD feed error, our operators will switch to a SD feed of the program rather that have the HD feed fail on the air. That is why some programs are not passed through. It is not that they "forget to flip the switch" or are not paying attention, they are attempting to provide our viewers with the best picture and sound available at the time.
We are working with all the parties to resolve the issues with HD including ABC, NBC, the transmission equipment manufacturers, encoding equipment manufactures and transmitter equipment manufacturers. We have already resolved a number of issues and are hopeful that new software releases to be installed this week will resolve most of the remaining instability issues in our HD circuit.
Let me assure you that we are committed to providing our viewers with the best HDTV experience possible and we are working daily toward
Again, thank you for you comments.
Director of Technology / Operations
First Coast News
Sent: Friday, November 28, 2003 9:18 PM
Subject: ABC 25 - Digital Station 10 - Jacksonville,FL
Good Evening Gentlemen,
I thought I would write on the behalf of the many digital television viewers in Jacksonville and inform you of the less than stellar QA/QC(quaility assurance/control) that your ABC staff have been demonstrating for some time now. It seems that your staff is unaware when the national HD feed is being sent to them and thus they are unable to "flip" the switch from the regular (SD - standard definition) signal to the HD signal being sent to all affiliates that are capable of receiving said signal. Or your procedures to check the type of signal being broadcast from ABC(national) is not the best of process available?
There are many examples of this lack of HD pass through: Thanksgiving day during the midday programming hours the primetime shows were broadcast in HD( at least all affiliate with HD-capable stations) -- Friday evening primetime (11/28/03) was not broadcast either. Those are just the most recent examples but others are/can be noted.
I'll be the first to admit that my family are not avid viewers of ABC's primetime, but with the ability to watch and enjoy other channels HD offerings we are less likely to stop at ABC-DT while "surfing" for viewing material and thus unlikely to possible become one of those "avid" viewers that your sponsors like to reach.
We also understand HD/Digital Television is a newer technology and bugs need to be worked out, but if I recall correctly your fine station(actually NBC - Olympics, but you are co-owned) was one of the first to offer HD and digital TV but still have many more errors and omissions to your signal than I have seen with you many other competitors in Jacksonville.