CEA Urges FCC to Shun Sinclair Request
Last week, the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA, formerly CEMA), along with 13 digital television manufacturers, reaffirmed their support for the current 8-VSB digital television (DTV) broadcast standard. In a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today, CEA members representing the major digital television manufacturers urged the Commission to dismiss the Sinclair Broadcasting Company's petition to re-examine the standard and allow the DTV transition to continue.
In the letter, the manufacturers note that "The 8-VSB Digital Broadcast Standard . . . best meets the technology requirements of the digital transition. To revisit the standard at this stage of the transition will jeopardize the future of digital television. Moving forward now will ensure that consumers will soon have access to a wide array of products, additional DTV applications, and, in terms of cost, the benefits of mass production."
CEA president Gary Shapiro said, "The current standard was developed as the result of a multi-industry, scientifically rigorous process. Nearly 100 broadcasters have made the transition, and DTV products are being sold at retail across the United States. The momentum behind DTV is strong. Now is not the time to revisit the standard."
CEA last month filed a motion to dismiss Sinclair's petition with the FCC. According to CEA, after filing a response to CEA's motion, Sinclair sent a retraction to the FCC earlier this week, admitting that their filing had overstated broadcaster support for their initial petition. Shapiro states that "unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation being circulated around this issue. The initial standard was developed based on the facts—to reopen it now based on hyperbole and misinformation would be a mistake."