& cplSiteName &

FCC: 123 TV Stations Can't Switch on Feb. 17

Jeff Baumgartner
2/12/2009
50%
50%

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has disallowed 123 stations, on a provisional basis, from ceasing regular analog operations on Feb. 17, holding that terminating analog on that date "poses a significant risk of substantial public harm." The table below details which stations were denied the request.

Table 1: Intentions denied

City State Network Call Sign "Night Light"
ALPENA MI CBS WBKB-TV N
BAKERSFIELD CA ABC KERO-TV N
BAKERSFIELD CA CBS KBAK-TV N
BAKERSFIELD CA NBC KGET-TV N
HARDIN MT FOX KHMT N
BILLINGS MT ABC KSVI N
BILLINGS MT CBS KTVQ N
BILLINGS MT NBC KULR-TV N
BINGHAMTON NY CBS WBNG-TV N
BINGHAMTON NY FOX WICZ-TV N
BINGHAMTON NY NBC WIVT N
BLUEFIELD WV NBC WVVA Y
BOWLING GREEN KY NBC WNKY N
NORTH POLE NY NBC WPTZ Y
HARTFORD VT NBC WNNE N
BURLINGTON VT ABC WVNY N
BURLINGTON VT CBS WCAX-TV Y
RIVERTON WY FOX KFNE N
LANDER WY CBS KGWL-TV N
HUNTINGTON WV CBS WOWK-TV N
HUNTINGTON WV NBC WSAZ-TV Y
CHARLESTON WV ABC WCHS-TV Y
CHARLESTON WV FOX WVAH-TV Y
CHARLOTTESVILLE VA CBS WCAV N
CHARLOTTESVILLE VA NBC, CW WVIR-TV N
CHEYENNE WY FOX KLWY N
WEST POINT MS FOX WLOV-TV N
TUPELO MS NBC WTVA N
DAYTON OH ABC WKEF Y
DAYTON OH CBS WHIO-TV Y
DAYTON OH FOX WRGT-TV Y
DAYTON OH NBC WDTN Y
EUGENE OR ABC KEZI N
EUGENE OR CBS KVAL-TV N
EUGENE OR FOX KLSR-TV N
EUGENE OR NBC KMTR N
COOS BAY OR CBS KCBY-TV N
COOS BAY OR NBC KMCB N
VALLEY CITY ND CBS KXJB-TV N
FARGO ND NBC KVLY-TV N
DEVILS LAKE ND ABC WDAZ-TV N
GREENWOOD MS ABC WABG-TV Y
GREENVILLE MS CBS WXVT N
HARRISONBURG VA ABC WHSV-TV Y
LA CROSSE WI ABC WXOW-TV Y
LA CROSSE WI CBS WKBT N
LA CROSSE WI FOX WLAX N
EAU CLAIRE WI ABC WQOW-TV Y
EAU CLAIRE WI NBC WEAU-TV N
CHIPPEWA FALLS WI FOX WEUX N
SUPERIOR NE FOX KSNB-TV N
LINCOLN NE ABC KLKN N
LINCOLN NE CBS KOLN N
KEARNEY NE ABC KHGI-TV N
HAYES CENTER NE ABC KWNB-TV N
MADISON WI ABC WKOW-TV Y
MADISON WI CBS WISC-TV N
MADISON WI FOX WMSN-TV Y
MADISON WI NBC WMTV N
MERIDIAN MS ABC WTOK-TV N
MERIDIAN MS CBS WMDN N
MERIDIAN MS NBC WGBC N
PENSACOLA FL ABC WEAR-TV Y
MOBILE AL CBS WKRG-TV N
MOBILE AL FOX WALA-TV Y
MOBILE AL NBC WPMI-TV N
WEST MONROE LA FOX KARD N
MONROE LA CBS KNOE-TV N
EL DORADO AR NBC KTVE N
COLUMBIA LA ABC KAQY N
NORTH PLATTE NE NBC KNOP-TV N
PARKERSBURG WV NBC WTAP-TV Y
PROVIDENCE RI CBS WPRI-TV N
PROVIDENCE RI FOX WNAC-TV Y
PROVIDENCE RI NBC WJAR N
NEW BEDFORD MA ABC WLNE-TV N
QUINCY IL NBC WGEM-TV N
HANNIBAL MO CBS KHQA-TV N
ROCKFORD IL ABC WTVO N
ROCKFORD IL FOX WQRF-TV N
ROCKFORD IL NBC WREX-TV N
FREEPORT IL CBS WIFR N
SALISBURY MD CBS AND FOX WBOC-TV N
ROCK SPRINGS WY CBS KGWR-TV N
SAN ANGELO TX CBS KLST N
SAN ANGELO TX NBC KSAN-TV N
SANTA MARIA CA CBS KCOY-TV Y
SANTA BARBARA CA ABC KEYT-TV N
SAN LUIS OBISPO CA NBC KSBY N
SIOUX CITY IA ABC KCAU-TV N
SIOUX CITY IA CBS KMEG N
SIOUX CITY IA FOX KPTH N
SIOUX CITY IA NBC KTIV Y
FLORENCE SD CBS KDLO-TV N
ABERDEEN SD ABC KABY-TV N
SOUTH BEND IN CBS WSBT-TV N
SOUTH BEND IN NBC WNDU-TV Y
ELKHART IN FOX WSJV Y
SPRINGFIELD MA NBC WWLP Y
TOPEKA KS ABC KTKA-TV Y
TOPEKA KS CBS WIBW-TV N
TOPEKA KS NBC KSNT N
VICTORIA TX ABC KAVU-TV N
VICTORIA TX FOX KVCT N
WACO TX ABC KXXV N
WACO TX CBS KWTX-TV N
WACO TX FOX KWKT N
TEMPLE TX NBC KCEN-TV Y
BRYAN TX FOX KYLE N
WATERTOWN NY ABC WWTI N
CARTHAGE NY CBS WWNY-TV N
WITTENBERG WI FOX WFXS N
WAUSAU WI ABC WAOW-TV N
WAUSAU WI CBS WSAW-TV N
RHINELANDER WI NBC WJFW-TV N
EAGLE RIVER WI ABC WYOW Y
WHEELING WV CBS WTRF-TV N
STEUBENVILLE OH NBC WTOV-TV N
SALINA KS FOX KAAS-TV N
GOODLAND KS CBS KBSL-TV N
GARDEN CITY KS ABC KUPK-TV N
GARDEN CITY KS NBC KSNG N
ENSIGN KS CBS KBSD-TV N
These stations must meet a set of stringent conditions set by the FCC if they still intend to switch off regular analog operations on Feb. 17. They have until Friday, Feb. 13, 2009 to respond to the FCC about whether they intend to meet those conditions. A more detailed version of this list is available here (Excel spreadsheet).
Source: FCC




The FCC went public with that determination Wednesday night, two days after 491 full-power stations (out of a grand total of 1,793) informed the Commission that they intended to switch from analog to digital on Feb. 17 -- the original digital transition date -- instead of waiting for up to four months under new legislation that delays the "hard" transition date to June 12. (See Stations Want to Flip Digital Switch Early.)

President Obama signed the DTV delay bill into law on Wednesday afternoon. The law intends to give consumers who rely on free, over-the-air TV signals more time to prepare for the transition.

The FCC said it developed the list by first identifying markets in which all of the stations would be terminating analog on Feb. 17. It also considered loss of "major network services," including access to local news and public affairs programming, within the larger Nielsen Designated Market Areas (DMAs).

Although the FCC has denied requests of 123 TV stations that wanted to switch on the original transition date, they can still do so if they meet a set of eight guidelines outlined by the FCC, listed in the table below.

Table 2: Eight provisions
  • Ensure that at least one station that is currently providing analog service to an area within the DMA that will no longer receive analog service after February 17, 2009 will continue broadcasting an analog signal providing, at a minimum, DTV transition and emergency information, as well as local news and public affairs programming (�enhanced nightlight� service) for at least 60 days following February 17, 2009. The local news, public affairs, or other programming may include commercial advertising.


  • Ensure that on-air educational information (prior to February 17 and thereafter as part of �enhanced nightlight� service) will include demonstrations of converter box installations, antenna setups, and other helpful information.


  • Ensure that enhanced nightlight service concerning the DTV transition or emergency information will be provided in Spanish and English and accessible to the disability community (e.g., silent scrolls or slates do not provide information to the visually impaired, and therefore, broadcast notices must have an aural component, as well as being closed or open captioned).


  • Ensure that the DTV educational information, both on-air and through other means, will provide information describing areas that may be losing over-the-air signal coverage temporarily or permanently as the station transitions to digital-only broadcasting.


  • Each station individually or collectively in the market commits to assisting viewers by providing local or toll-free telephone assistance, including engineering support. Such assistance may be provided jointly with other stations, organizations, and businesses in the area.


  • Each station alone or together with other stations or local businesses and organizations in the market will provide a location and staff for a consumer �walk-in� center to assist consumers with applying for coupons and obtaining converter boxes, to demonstrate how to install converter boxes, to provide maps and lists of communities that may be affected by coverage issues, and to serve as a redistribution point for consumers who are willing to donate coupons, converter boxes, televisions and for those in need of these items.


  • Each station, individually, is complying with the obligation�to broadcast a crawl on their analog channel regarding the station�s termination of analog service, for the seven day period from February 10 through the termination of the station�s analog signal on February 17.


  • Each station will consider and is encouraged to coordinate with and use community resources to provide consumer outreach and support, including in-home assistance.
  • Source: FCC




    Stations have until 6 p.m. ET on Friday, Feb. 13, to inform the FCC if they plan to meet those requirements and want the agency to consider reinstatement for a Feb. 17 transition.

    The 368 stations that have FCC approval to switch on Feb. 17 are obligated to provide viewer notifications and continuous on-screen "crawls" before terminating regular analog service. Over 100 stations said they will support an analog "night light" for at least two weeks following the switch, providing "DTV education and emergency information, as needed."

    Roughly two thirds of full-power stations intend to keep analog going after Feb. 17. Among this group, the owned and operated stations of ABC, NBC, Fox, and CBS have already informed the FCC that they intend to keep regular analog feeds on until June 12.

    Some other stations are planning to terminate analog some time after Feb. 17 but before June 12. "We are evaluating whether a revised process for these stations would be warranted," the FCC said.

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

    (2)  | 
    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
    Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
    DCITDave
    50%
    50%
    DCITDave,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 4:11:55 PM
    re: FCC: 123 TV Stations Can't Switch on Feb. 17
    How?
    Jeff Baumgartner
    50%
    50%
    Jeff Baumgartner,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    12/5/2012 | 4:11:54 PM
    re: FCC: 123 TV Stations Can't Switch on Feb. 17
    In the FCC's view, it thinks in part that consumers in these markets are among the least ready for the switch, afraid that big groups of them won't have access to local TV news, local news, public affairs and emergency info if the switch happens on Feb 17...'course I doubt they also checked to see if people still use radios and can get such info that way in a pinch. Looks like they also gave preference to markets where all the major stations planned to terminate analog on the same date- FEb. 17.
    Featured Video
    Flash Poll
    Upcoming Live Events
    March 12-14, 2019, Denver, Colorado
    April 2, 2019, New York, New York
    April 8, 2019, Las Vegas, Nevada
    May 6, 2019, Denver, Colorado
    May 6-8, 2019, Denver, Colorado
    May 21, 2019, Nice, France
    September 17-19, 2019, Dallas, Texas
    October 1, 2019, New Orleans, Louisiana
    October 10, 2019, New York, New York
    November 5, 2019, London, England
    December 3, 2019, New York, New York
    December 3-5, 2019, Vienna, Austria
    All Upcoming Live Events