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Saturday, April 12, 2008

FCC Fines Retailers and Manufacturers Over Digital TV

Even though we deal only with Digital TV that is IPTV and other online TV, I like to mention something about conventional TV. This is from Information Week article

The FCC requires retailers and manufacturers to notify consumers of plans to switch to digital television signals by marking television sets and receivers that will be obsolete when the transition to digital television takes place.

The FCC announced this week that Best Buy, Wal-Mart, Sears, Circuit City, Target, and other stores failed to label analog television equipment with notices that they will not work next year.

The FCC requires retailers selling analog television receivers to label explain to consumers that the television receiver will not work without a converter box after February 17, 2009. Anyone who purchased a TV before March 2007 and who uses a rooftop antenna or "rabbit ears" to get a broadcast signal will need a converter box.

Manufacturers, including Vivitar, Precor, and Syntax-Brillian, are accused of illegally importing or selling outdated equipment. Syntax-Brillian claims the fines are excessive and unconstitutional. Precor claims the television sets were shipped only to commercial customers for use with workout equipment.

The FCC fined Polaroid and Proview Technology for allegedly violating a requirement that allows users to control content with V-chips.

The FCC said it warned the companies before fining them. The companies have 30 days to file appeals.

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