We who have lived with rabbit ear antennas, or roof antennas are truly in for an upheaval when everything changes from the analog signal we've known for years. When we actually get to that new digital age many of us will end up losing the channel signals because of weaker signals. This change won't stop just because of the loss of those signals that we've had for years because they will be needed for the public service signal. This change will totally affect television as we know it, and those changes will especially affect those who receive that television signal by that antenna alone.
For many of us the digital age will mean a change over to cable or satellite TV, but for others who have lived well with that old fashioned standard the aerial antenna it may mean finally turning off that little picture box for the last time. Moving ahead is an important step, but trying to drag a nation into the digital age, especially one so mired in today's economic problems could end end up creating a real catch 22 situation.
The choice could be simple - spend more money to receive decent television reception, or decide to try to remain in the analog era. The converter box at least makes receiving the signal possible, but the reception can be iffy at best in bad weather.
I remember a time when we would discuss at school who got our favorite TV programs with the least amount of "snow!" That's a term that today we see described as pixilating images - I call it that digital cloud which takes over that program you really want to watch.
Much thought has been given to the need for more public service stations, but I question how much has given to this dilemma that many now face because of that need for this new technology?
There seems to be a great many questions about the coming transition to HDTV, with very few easy answers.