Monday, February 9, 2009

Come Monday...DTV

“Come Monday…” is a weekly series that will involve a review of websites, movies, documentaries, television shows, sports, music, and whatever else may tickle my fancy at the time. Be assured that these reviews will be generally positive, as in accordance to the Jimmy Buffett song “Come Monday.” This is subject to change, however. In fact, I would be most derelict in my duties to neglect going on a rant every once in a while. For rants promote change, and change can be good—right? Therefore, since good is generally considered as being a positive force in 99.3% of the parallel universes that I am aware of, even a rant could be considered as being something positive, and a genuine hissy-fit would be even better (so I'm told).

[DTV] stands for Digitial TeleVision, and unless you have been living under a very large rock in a very isolated place, or just don’t watch local television stations in the United States of America, there is absolutely no way that you could be unaware of the fact that the end of analog television broadcasts was scheduled for [February 17, 2009]. For the big push started with notifications of the transistion scrolling across the bottom of the screen at all hours of the day and night well over a year ago, and for at least the last couple of months, notifications that covered a good fifth of the screen have been popping up at the beginning of every show! No, there is not a doubt in my mind about the vast majority of the American public being fully aware of this.

Even as irritating as it has been for me, I found some comfort in knowing that it would all be over on February 18, 2009. For it would be rather ridiculous to broadcast new notifications stating that all who could see them were indeed receiving a digital television signal.

Yes, I suppose there could be some sort of a notification broadcasted for those who were still trying to receive analog television signals, but I fail to see the point. For who would see the notification since it would have to be broadcasted digitally because by law anyone caught broadcasting analog television signals after February 17, 2009 would receive a thrashing that they would not soon forget?

It has now been proven to me that far too many in this country are just too stupid to breathe on their own, however. For it has been determined that thousands upon thousands are not ready to receive digital television signals yet, and as a result of this, I must endure the agony of seeing more notifications (probably covering the entire screen for at least half of every show this time around) until at least [June 12, 2009].

No, I do not mean to be mean, but come on people—have you not had enough time already? For [converter boxes] have been readily available for quite some time now—even at a substantial discount with a [government voucher]!

Yes, I am sure that are some exceptions. Be assured that my ire is not directed at those caught up in unavoidable circumstances. It is, however, directed at those who have just sat around and done nothing to get ready for the change.

Now, if you would go against my advice and talk to my wife, she would probably tell you (since she gets immense pleasure from ratting me out on the extremely rare occasions when I fail to exceed her impossibly high expectations) that even I have been confused about what kind of an antenna was needed to receive digital television signals. For I was under the impression that a special kind of antenna that was made to receive digital signals was required, and I have recently discovered that any [good quality antenna] that receives both [VHF] and [UHF] band signals will work just fine.

Yes, I have seen news reports about problems with receiving digital signals, even with a good quality antenna. One that comes to mind was about residents of [Miami, OK] picking up digital broadcasts from [Tulsa, OK] (around 90 miles to the southwest) a lot better than those coming from [Joplin, MO] (around 10 miles to the northeast), but it turned out to be no big deal. For the Tulsa stations were already broadcasting their digital signals at full-power while the Joplin stations were not.

Alas, the simplest solution would be to just keep both kinds of television signals going. For those who wanted to receive a much better picture (even in high-definition, with the right kind of television set) could receive the digital signals, and those who could not care less could have their trusty, old analog signals, but there is probably some study commissioned by the [Sierra Club] or [Greenpeace], maybe even [PETA], that concludes that the broadcasting of both digital and analog television signals over an extended period of time would tear a hole in the [space/time continuum].

So, we can’t be having that. For future generations just wouldn’t understand, but what about me?


  1. If we spent as much on quality programs as we do on technology now that would be an improvement!

    We have a year or so to go for this, although one small area as switched over already. What will we do with the ancient TVs that abound - dump them in the street of course!

  2. Oh no, my dear Adullamite, we can't go dumping ancient TV's in the streets. For the heads of many an environmentalist would literally explode because of all of the toxic materials contained in them. Of course, I suppose we could use them to make bombs, but that would make other heads...well...umm... Never mind.

    P.S.: I fully agree with you about the quality of current programming on the major networks. For with far too many of the shows being of the staged reality variety, and even the dramas becoming more and more like soap operas with each new script, why bother watching?


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