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FCC Loosens June 12 DTV Start Time

In Order FCC 09-47 released Tuesday (June 2), the FCC said stations wishing to commence their digital operations June 12 may do so at any time that date without prior commission approval.

The order said that it expected stations taking advantage of this flexibility would begin operations on their post-transition channels “without a significant gap in the time following the termination of the analog signal or they will continue providing digital service on their pre-transition channel until they turn on their post-transition channel.”

Stations must notify viewers of the time they will terminate analog service and may adjust the time of day they will be ending analog service by notifying the commission.

The FCC reminded broadcasters that stations commencing post-transition digital operations on June 12 must either file a license application (FCC Form 302-DTV) that day or notify the commission they have begun program tests and file a license application within 10 days.

Any station increasing power or changing channels in its post-transition operation must coordinate transitions prior to 11:59 p.m. on June 12 with stations whose pre-transition operations would be affected by the switch. If the station desiring to transition earlier in the day is unable to coordinate its transition with affected stations, it will not be allowed to transition until 11:59 p.m.

Read all of Doug Lung’s RF Report.