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Quote:
Originally posted by DTC mac
Fines are one possiblity revokation of broadcast license is another.
Then that particular channel will never be digital once their license is revoked. Fines seem like a better incentive to get things moving.
 

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I'd like to see them make the fines REALLY huge, and then offer to rebate their fine amounts back to them, against the cost of going digital, if their signal goes digital within 120 days. If they still refuse to go digital within 1 year, revoke their license and give it to someone who will go digital. They should then offer the original collected fine to that new station as an incentive to get up and running quickly.
 

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 http://www.tvinsite.com/broadcasting...y=breakingNews



TV stations that can’t justify missing the May 1 digital launch deadline will have an extra six months before facing substantial penalty from the FCC.


Thursday the commission approved procedures for fining or even stripping permits of DTV laggards, but these toughest measures won’t be used right away.


'Our goal isn’t to punish people, but to achieve the goal of getting programming out there,' said Barbara Kreisman, chief of the Media Bureau’s video services division.


Stations that can justify delays based on technical problems, delays in scheduling construction crews, zoning fights or inability to obtain financing are allowed up to two six-month waivers.


Those denied waivers are will be sent a letter of admonishment and required to report regularly on their progress bringing DTV online.


Admonished stations that fail to go digital within six months of the reprimand will be issued a notice of apparent liability for fines and required to meet a series of 30-day construction milestones.


If a station fails to offer a digital signal a year after admonishment, the FCC will revoke its construction permit.


The procedures were floated as proposed rules but will go into affect immediately on a case-by-case basis until they become permanent. The commission tentatively concluded that channels confiscated from cancelled construction permits will be reauctioned.


National Association of Broadcasters officials Thursday said the sanctions appeared reasonable.


'We believe the vast majority of broadcasters will work aggressively to meet the 'DTV plan put forth today as evidenced by the fact that Harris Corp. has 700 transmitters on order right now,' said NAB spokesman Dennis Wharton
 

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Let's really get tough: 40 lashes with a wet noodle!
 

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I've merged the two identical topics into this one.
 

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Just keep in mind that they have to go to DTV, not that they have to show HDTV. Those station dragging their heels can put up a low power tower and broadcast 4:3 to meet the current rules.


That would be short-sighted to do that, since they would lose lots of viewers when their analog tower is shut down in 2006. But if they aren't embracing DTV and HDTV, they could do the minimum in hope that FCC won't be able to declare 85% veiwer reception of DTV has been met at the 2006 deadline.
 

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The voluntary plan outlined by Michael Powell negates the wisdom of NOT passing an HDTV signal from the network. The inclusion of that prodding seems aimed at stations like KPHO that are now short-changing their viewers. Call me naive, but I believe Powell etal see this for what it is - a blatantly self-serving abuse of the letter of the law. The FCC has to realize this does not make their affiliate network happy (perhaps, this has been conveyed privately), nor their viewers who've spent the big bucks and now feel cheated. The fact this was included tells me letters to the FCC from unhappy viewers have been noted and the desire is there to buck an unfortunate trend. I don't believe the FCC wants to be seen as openly supporting broadcasters at the expense of consumers. They have to walk a tightrope of fairness to all, at least publicly.


Hopefully, the threat of fines, etc. will help cities like Denver as well. Local zoning boards or special interest groups would not want to be placed in the position of costing stations large fines or even their broadcast license, would they? Well, SCARE may be an exception. :(
 

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Take the fines and start a fund to promote HDTV and raise public awareness. And force them to run a certain amount of commercials boasting HDTV during their prime time schedule. Lets say 5 every hour. That will reduce their revenue and get the word out..ha.
 

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It's too bad they can't fine the retailers for not having DTV tuners on the shelves and sales people who know anything about it. If its not being sold no one will buy it.
 

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Lee, or any BE who is up on the law about the "free spectrum"


I was under the impression that absent of waivers that a station who misses the May 1st deadline would lose his right to the free spectrum but could still have that channel/spectrum but must bid on it in open auction at a later date. Then, if they win the bid, they have to pay the bid price to use the spectrum in the future. If they lose the bid they are off the air.


In a normal right of first refusal option, I would never be "fined" for failing to make a choice. I don't see the legality of "fines" for a station who does not squat on the channel by May 1st. I only see that they now have to pay what the market will bear on Auction day to use it from that time forward.


The part that is confusing to me is this Construction permit granted by the FCC to operate on the ATSC channel. Is this what the FCC will be fining for? ie. not executing in good faith on a construction permit?


I also understand that the FCC has granted certain waivers to the deadline of May 1st based on certain local hardships. Is the application for these waivers and or extensions expired now?
 

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Careful Lee...

I got in big trouble for saying that!
 

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I only see that they now have to pay what the market will bear on Auction day to use it from that time forward.
Wow. How nice would that be if HDNET could come in and win the auction on some of these local stations. Heck, I'd trade our not yet digital WB affiliate for HDNET ANY day of the week. :D
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by DAP
If they revoke their NTSC liscense, they either go digital or go out of business.
They would go digital and go out of business.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Lee Wood
It's too bad they can't fine the retailers for not having DTV tuners on the shelves and sales people who know anything about it. If its not being sold no one will buy it.
Or fine the cable co's for waiting until 2002 to even begin thinking seriously about passing the digital channels through. I mean, what were they thinking back in '98 and '99. Did they not believe there'd actually be any digital channels at some point? Especially in the bigger markets where many of the channels have been up and running for years now.


If somebody actually thought this transition would fly relying solely on people upgrading to their own OTA digital tuners even if they were virtually given away, they were dreaming. It's still only television. Television of which the vast majority of people in this country choose to rely on the simple plug and play nature of cable tv to see.
 

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Will the FCC fine itself as well? A local station where I live put in a request for a DTV channel change nearly 800 (yes eight hundred) days ago, and it has still not been approved. The station cannot construct a portion of the transmitting equipment without knowing the DTV channel number it will have. And this is not an isolated case. Check the FCC's website on the DTV Channel change page and you will find that as of two months ago the average wait for this approval was over 400 days. (It has since been updated twice since, and I have not taken the time to re-calculate this) And there's a lot of stations that put in for this request......


'Our goal isn’t to punish people, but to achieve the goal of getting programming out there,' said Barbara Kreisman, chief of the Media Bureau’s video services division.


I talked to Barbara Kreisman about this issue about a month ago and she was less than sympathetic even though the delay is directly related to personnel in her department. She basically handed my off to someone so that I could leave a message.......


I don't think the FCC is totally responsible by any means, but they're not the good cop they're trying to be right now either.
 
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