Television transitions and radio promotions
No mass panic ensued when KGMB-TV shut off its analog signal last month, but some handholding did result.
The shutoff was a 10-second test, conducted May 19, during each of three newscasts, at 5, 6 and 10 p.m.
The test was to show viewers whether they need to take steps to make sure they will still be able to watch TV come the so-called DTV transition.
On Feb. 17, full-power television stations will cease analog broadcasting, by federal government mandate, with few exceptions. Their signals will instead be digital.
Nothing happened in most Hawaii households because most subscribe to cable or satellite services.
However, the station did get calls from homes where screens went to static, said Marketing Director Candace Hirleman. Those sets were getting the station's analog signal over the air.
The static primarily caused confusion for those viewers, "and we walked them through it," she said. The chief engineer guided about 10 viewers through preparation for the transition.
Those options include subscribing to a cable or satellite service, buying a digital TV, or buying converter boxes to attach to analog TV sets.
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce is issuing free coupons worth $40 off the cost of DTV converter boxes. Each household can get two coupons.
They are available online at www.dtv2009.gov, by phone at (888) 388-2009, or by mail at DTV-2009, P.O. Box 2000, Portland, Ore., 97208-2000.
It should be noted that folks who take one of these steps will not be receiving high-definition television -- HDTV is a different matter.
Hawaii Sen. Daniel Inouye told industry publication TV Business Confidential recently that more stations in more markets should conduct tests, to help more consumers prepare.
You can now call Chris Leonard, "Mr. President" and no chads, hanging or otherwise, were involved. A slight change in the structure of Hilo-based New West Broadcasting Corp.
resulted in the seeming promotion from vice president and general manager. He says it's business as usual, however.
Maui-based Pacific Radio Group Inc. has named Chris Osgood chief operating officer, a position created for him, said Chuck Bergson, president and chief executive officer.
No relation to broadcasting icon Charles Osgood, Chris Osgood started in radio in advertising sales at Maui's KAOI-FM 95.1/ AM 1110. He also was local sales manager for Oahu's KUCD-FM 101.9 and more recently had been general sales manager for Cox Radio Inc.'s WSB-AM 750 in Atlanta.
is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin. Call 529-4747, fax 529-4750 or write to Erika Engle, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813. She can also be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org