Who Loses With Digital Television?

Doc Searls wrote an article which poses this question about the digital television switchover: What happens after TV’s mainframe era ends next February?

He raises the point that nobody else seems to address, that many people will lose television stations after the switchover. Despite statements to the contrary, just putting up a new antenna won’t always solve the problem. VHF and UHF signals propagate differently, and there is no antenna available that can paper over those differences.

That isn’t to say that many people won’t gain channels with digital television. Many will, but it bothers me that the people least likely to have other options are the very people most likely to be cut out by digital television.

One comment on “Who Loses With Digital Television?

  • Worse, all the focus so far, on behalf of have-nots, is the cost of buying a converter box. Almost nobody is paying attention to the fact that UHF TV lacks the range of VHF, and that digital TV signals in some cases will be worse than analog ones … or gone altogether.

    It’ll be interesting to see what happens.

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