Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
When it comes to DTV, ‘a rose is a rose’
With about one week to go before the DTV transition for all full-power TV broadcasters is complete, the FCC Media Bureau’s Video Division has issued an order clarifying what stations can use for call signs following the June 12 transition to digital.
The order, released June 3, specifies that stations have flexibility in choosing which call sign to use, either their existing call sign, such as WXYZ or WXYZ-TV, or their digital channel call sign, WXYZ-DT. According to the commission, by default the call sign system will assign them their existing analog call sign. Stations choosing to continue to use the analog call sign following the transition need to take no action. Those stations choosing to use the “DT” suffix will be allowed to do so without charge for the FCC’s online call sign authorization and reservation system, following the completion of their digital transition.
Stations never on the air with an analog signal will by default retain the “DT” suffix call sign. However, these stations can choose to replace the suffix with “TV” following the June 12 transition without charge via the call sign authorization and reservation system.