Set makers irked over digital hours cutback


Consumer electronics manufacturers aren't happy to hear that digital broadcasters want to be able to cut back their operating hours until more consumers have digital TV sets.

"That's the exact opposite message than the one we ought to be sending," says Michael Petricone, vice president of technology policy at the Consumers Electronics Association. "It's a rule in our industry that programming drives hardware. Both Congress and the FCC are strongly on record saying that they want the DTV transition to proceed along as quickly as possible. For broadcasters to say that they are going to be cutting back on airtime, or on programming, is exactly the wrong signal."

In order to help the digital transition, the NAB has asked the FCC to allow DTV stations to run reduced hours in order to save money on electricity. - Paige Albiniak