NTIA Puts Out RFP on DTV Box Program


The National Telecommunications & Information Administration has begun outsourcing some of the administration of the DTV converter box program, including the consumer education campaign.

As promised, the National Telecommunications & Information Administration, has put out an RFP for various components of the program.   Saying it is looking for a mix of skills across large and small businesses, NTIA said it needs help in three areas: 1.) Consumer education and communications, (2) Systems processing (e.g., determine consumer eligibility, coupon distribution and activation, certify retailers, and provide training materials), and 3.) financial processing (e.g., administer the coupon authorization for redemption and retailer payment process, and perform independent auditing).

The first area will be a challenge, since NTIA was only given $5 million for outreach or, as NTIA John Kneuer has pointed out, less than it would cost for two commercials in a Super Bowl. But the FCC has also asked for some money for outreach, and the broadcast, cable and consumer electronics industries have launched their own information campaign.