4
| Media |

Panicking the public about digital television

Your TV is ticking...
^
Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

During this morning's Channel 4 newscast, a message ran across the bottom of the screen in the spot where story updates usually appear -- but there was nothing especially imminent about this far-from-breaking news. The text noted that Channel 4 would be switching to all-digital broadcasting on February 17, 2009, and advised viewers to surf to DTVanswers.com in order to stave off the no-over-the-air-TV-signal apocalypse.

Overkill? Just a leetle...

Since the television industry began nattering on and on and on about the impending digital switchover, I've had countless conversations with elderly relatives absolutely panicked about the situation -- and since all of them already had cable, they needn't have suffered one nanosecond of concern. Folks at stations such as Channel 9 (which has been running spots about digital for the better part of a year) no doubt feel they're doing a public service by providing heads-ups about DTV. But by starting so early, and by presenting the information in frequently confusing ways, they're making the situation worse instead of better. Indeed, Channel 4's decision to include word of a February event in a mid-August news crawl is tantamount to warning us how long we've got to shop before Valentine's Day.

Pick up those candy hearts immediately! And while you're at it, sign up with Comcast! -- Michael Roberts

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.

 

Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.