House Nixes Delay for DTV Transition

If you were banking on the government to buy you a couple more months of cable or converter box-free TV, then this is a sad day for you. The House defeated the bill that would've set the date back four months from its February 17th goal with a vote of 258-168.

By now, you've probably heard more about the switchover than you ever would have cared to, which is part of the reason the delay was denied. The order for the switch came way back in 2005 and almost $1.4 billion worth of coupons to subsidize converter boxes have been given out since.

Overall, I see it as a good thing. Extending the wait another four months would have meant millions more spent by the government on advertisements that probably would have just caused more confusion in the long run. Plus, the freed-up spectrum can begin being used by emergency broadcast systems.

Unhappy, however, are the roughly 2.6 million people whose requests for coupons were put on a waiting list after the program hit its initial budget cap. They won't be getting their vouchers until after the turn over, which means they'll either have to upgrade to cable, shell out full-price for a box or just find a local WiFi hotspot and cozy up to Hulu.com.

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