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Consumer Advocates Take Stand on Americans Overlooked by the DTV Transition

Monday, July 23, 2007

AARP, CEA, Consumers Union, Minority Media Council, NAACP, and THAT Corp. to Address DTV Transition Shortfalls during July 25th Capitol Hill Forum

MEDIA ADVISORY

Washington, DC, July 23, 2007 – On Wednesday, July 25th, representatives from AARP, Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), Consumers Union, NAACP, the Minority Media & Telecommunications Council and THAT Corporation will take a hard look at the impact of the looming DTV transition on millions of low-income and minority communities who have been overlooked in governmental preparation.

Previous DTV discussions focused on the coupon program and meeting the stringent February 17, 2009 deadline. Although these are crucial elements of the program, for an estimated 75 million Americans there is even more at stake. For those Americans who cannot afford to purchase a new digital TV or subscribe to increasingly expensive paid-TV services like cable or satellite, coming home and tuning in to a favorite local station may no longer be a given.

Unfortunately, while government groups were focusing on the benefits of DTV, they were overlooking the television experience for many of America's low-income and minority communities.

WHAT Open Capitol Hill forum on the DTV transition and its impact on low-income and minority communities
WHERE      Russell Senate Office Building Room 188 (SR-188)
WHEN Wednesday, July 25, 2007 9:30AM - 11:00 AM
WHO Debra Berlyn
DTV consultant, AARP
  Jennifer Fuson
assistant media director, Consumers Union
  Julie Kearney
senior director and regulatory counsel, CEA
  Joycelyn Tate
Earle K. Moore Fellow, Minority Media & Telecommunications Council
  Hillary Shelton
Washington bureau director, NAACP (invited)
  Les Tyler
president, THAT Corporation
WHY For an estimated 75 million Americans, the dream of digital TV may be a nightmare. Instead of propelling them into the future of broadcasting, the DTV transition will take them straight back to the 50's.
For those Americans who cannot afford to purchase a new digital TV or subscribe to increasingly expensive paid-TV services like cable or satellite, coming home and tuning in to a favorite local station will no longer be a given.