National Telecommunications and Information Administration
• Asst. Secretary
• Domestic Policy
• Telecom Research
Media & Press
Release: Commerce's NTIA Works with Local Community Groups to Educate Consumers
About the Benefits of the Digital TV Transition and Coupon Program
DALLAS/FT. WORTH –The U.S. Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) today kicked off Digital Television: Experience the Benefits, an effort with local organizations across the country to educate consumers about the benefits of the digital TV transition and the TV Converter Box Coupon Program. After February 17, 2009, all full-powered television stations will begin broadcasting only in digital.
“NTIA recognizes local organizations are trusted sources of information in the community and they can provide unique assistance in educating consumers about the digital television transition and the TV Converter Box Coupon Program,” said Acting NTIA Administrator Meredith Baker. “Digital Television: Experience the Benefits is a rallying point of support and action for NTIA and our local supporters to ensure that this historic transition leaves no Americans in the dark.”
NTIA is coordinating with local supporters to conduct informational sessions and demonstrations for community residents. Local Digital Television: Experience the Benefits events include an “Ask the Experts” day at RadioShack’s flagship store in Ft. Worth, Texas (March 31); a public educational session lead by the Vernon Community Action Council in Leesville, Louisiana (April 1); and a presentation at an English as a Second Language class in Visalia, California (April 3). This week, similar events are scheduled to take place in Fayetteville, NC (April 1); Sioux City, IA (April 1); Norfolk, VA (April 2); Fairbanks, AK (April 2); Philadelphia, PA (April 4); and Boise, ID (April 4).
These local events will provide the public an opportunity
to learn more about why the digital TV transition is happening
and their options, which include: purchasing a converter box
that will plug in to an existing analog TV set; connecting
the analog TV to cable, satellite or other pay service; or
buying a TV with a digital tuner. They will also learn
about the individual benefits, which they may experience immediately,
and the community benefits of the digital television transition
“We realize that many consumers are looking for an opportunity to ask questions and see a television converter box first hand,” said Acting Administrator Baker. “We believe activities happening this week, and throughout the spring, will provide consumers with that opportunity.”
Between now and March 31, 2009, households that wish to request more information or coupons should call 1-888-DTV-2009 (1-888-388-2009), or visit www.DTV2009.gov, or apply by mail at PO Box 2000, Portland, OR 97208, or deaf or hard of hearing callers may dial 1-877-530-2634 (English/TTY) or 1-866-495-1161 (Spanish/TTY).
NTIA will provide consumers a list of eligible converters and participating retailers when coupons are mailed and on its Web site. Coupons expire 90 days after they are mailed, and only one coupon can be used to purchase each coupon-eligible converter box.
NTIA is responsible for the development of the domestic and international telecommunications policy of the Executive Branch.
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