DTV Transition Is A Non-Event

Categories: TV Business

Written By

June 13th, 2009

Of course the government will spin the non-event as validating their genius in postponing the analog cut-off from its original February 17 date, but based on what happened with the nearly 1,000 stations that switched in February, had the entire nation gone at the same time it would have been a non-event then as well.

A Hearst Television spokesperson says the analog shutoff was a non-event in Boston, Hearst's largest market. Call volumes in the remainder of the Hearst markets, including Orlando and Sacramento, were similarly without catastrophic incident. "We haven't seen greater than anticipated call volume," says the spokesperson.

A LIN spokesperson said the switch was "smooth," with around 100 calls per station. Same story at the 10 Meredith stations, says VP/Director of Engineering Joe Snelson. The Meredith markets, including Atlanta and Las Vegas, saw between 50 and 375 calls yesterday, not including the calls made to FCC hotlines and call centers. "Overall, our group would classify this as a non-event," he says. "If there's any takeaway from yesterday, it's rescan, rescan, rescan."

After a WCPO-WXIX  call center was "bombarded" yesterday, according to WCPO engineer Greg Reams, the calls slowed to a manageable, though hardly insignificant, number today. Reams says the center got 1700 calls in the first 24 hours, and another 400 as of 10:15 today.

For Meredith, a possible spike in calls yesterday evening, as viewers got home from work and tucked into primetime viewing, did not materialize. Snelson says his phone did not ring last night; nor did he awake to a cavalcade of anxious emails today.

read the rest at Broadcasting & Cable.

Another B&C article notes that the New York call center received 10,941 calls out of a metro area population of 18 million. Thank goodness we waited those extra 4 months!

 
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