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FCC Boosts DTV-Education Efforts

The Federal Communications Commission distributed public-service announcements and long-form video to TV stations around the country to help viewers figure out whether they need converter boxes and how to set them up correctly.

FCC chairman Kevin Martin at a Hill hearing on the digital-TV transition cited the calls the FCC received from viewers in Wilmington, N.C., who were not able to set up the boxes or did not know they had to scan for the DTV channels. He said then that the FCC was going to refine its education message.

The long-form video, "What Is DTV, What You Need to Know, Watching DTV with a Converter Box, and Summary," will provide a "step-by-step guide" to hooking up the boxes and explains how to rescan for the DTV channels.

Wilmington pulled the plug on analog early (Sept. 8) in part to help the FCC figure out how to refine the education message and reach the right people with key information.

The FCC said it distributed copies to more than 1,300 stations, but others that want broadcast-quality versions of the spots or video could contact Rosemary Kimball via e-mail.