December 1, 2002
Comments of Rob Stoddard, NCTA SVP of Communications & Public Affairs in Response to Release of GAO Report on the Digital TV Transition
We’ll need to review the full GAO report before commenting at length, however, a glance at its findings confirms our belief that consumers are just now learning about digital TV, that additional education for consumers and retailers would be helpful, and that the transition itself is fairly complex, not only for consumers but also for the industries that are voluntarily working together to make it happen. The cable industry is working hard to ease the transition, by fulfilling its commitment to the FCC to provide high definition services, talking with the broadcast and consumer electronics industries about consumer-friendly solutions, and already beginning to provide and market HDTV services in many cities and towns throughout the United States. Though we remain opposed to expanding our carriage requirements through dual or multiple “must carry” which would disadvantage many non-broadcast programmers and content providers, we look forward to working with Congress and the FCC to deliver high definition and digital television to American consumers.
Rob Stoddard, 202/775-3629