One thing is missing, says Copps

August 9, 2004

The nemesis of the FCC’s Republican majority supported the commission’s DTV initiatives last week, but firmly reminded his colleagues that they have failed to address the public interest obligations of DTV broadcasters.

Commissioner Michael Copps noted that the vast majority of television stations are already beginning to broadcast in digital and hundreds of stations across the country are multicasting. “And yet, those broadcasters do not know what they must do to discharge their public interest obligations on their new channels,” he said. “Worse, viewers are equally in the dark. We really can’t delay any longer in bringing some certainty for both broadcasters and the public.”

Copps said if the American people are to realize the full benefits of DTV, “we have to call the public interest issues forward and accord them the high priority they deserve...just as we have worked together on the mechanics of the digital transition.”

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