Commentary: Hdtv: Don't Blame The Fcc For Tuning Out

The nation's broadcasters are hopping mad. On Jan. 22, in a ruling pushed hard by its incoming chairman, Michael K. Powell, the Federal Communications Commission rejected their wish to have cable companies carry both digital and analog signals from local TV stations. Since 1996, when they were "loaned" tens of billions dollars of spectrum for digital TV, broadcasters have been struggling to develop something people would watch in an era of satellite, DVD, and cable's own digital products. To jump-start the new era, they hoped the government would force cable companies to carry whatever they dished out.

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