July 16, 2008
KGW NewsChannel 8 Helps Viewers on DTV Readiness
Belo Station to conduct Digital TV test July 18 during 6 PM news
PORTLAND, OR -- On Friday, July 18 KGW NewsChannel 8 will pull the plug on its newscast for five to ten seconds so viewers can find out if their television is ready for conversion to digital television. KGW NewsChannel 8 business reporter Joe Smith will guide viewers through the July 18 test during NewsChannel 8's 6:00 PM newscast. For five to ten seconds the analog signal will be turned off. Viewers able to see the station's broadcast during that time have a television ready for DTV. For viewers who see snow, Joe Smith will explain what steps are needed to get ready for the DTV transition.
Beginning February of 2009, Congress has mandated that television signals must convert to all-digital broadcasting, known as Digital Television (DTV). Viewers must have the capability to receive the digital signal or their televisions may not work.
The government is mandating this conversion to DTV to free up frequencies for public safety communications (such as police, fire and emergency rescue) and provide more frequencies for advanced commercial wireless services for consumers. Digital television also enables television stations to provide improved picture and sound quality (including high definition television) and to offer more programming options through multiple broadcast streams.
"This on air test is another important step we're taking to ensure our viewers are ready for the February transition," said DJ Wilson, president and general manager of KGW NewsChannel 8. "Since January, we've been airing public service announcements and news stories about the coming transition. We also have a dedicated DTV section on our website that details what the conversion means and how to prepare for it."
Viewers who subscribe to cable television or satellite television do not need to take any action to prepare for conversion. Even without cable or satellite television service newer televisions may already be have a digital tuner, especially if it was purchased in the last year. Since May 25 of 2007, all televisions sold have been required to either contain the digital tuner or the retailer must disclose at point of sale that the television sold does not contain the tuner. Anyone with an older television or a television purchased without a built-in digital tuner will need to obtain a converter box by February 17, 2009, in order to receive the over-the-air broadcasts. Coupons valued at up to $40 each are available through the government to help defray the cost of purchasing a converter box. For more information on conversion to DTV visit www.kgw.com
About Belo Corp.
Belo Corp. is one of the nation's largest pure-play, publicly-traded television companies, with annual revenue of approximately $775 million. The Company owns and operates 20 television stations reaching more than 14 percent of U.S. television households, including ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, CW and MyNetwork TV affiliates, and their associated Web sites, in 15 highly-attractive markets across the United States. Belo stations consistently deliver distinguished journalism for which they have received significant industry recognition including nine Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Silver Baton Awards; nine George Foster Peabody Awards; and 23 national Edward R. Murrow Awards all since 2000, and in each case more than any other commercial station group in the nation. Nearly all Belo stations rank first or second in their local market. Belo owns stations in seven of the top 25 markets in the nation, with six stations located in the fast-growing, top-14 markets of Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, Seattle/Tacoma and Phoenix. Additionally, the Company has created regional cable news channels in Texas and the Northwest increasing its impact in those regions. Additional information is available at www.belo.com or by contacting Paul Fry, vice president/Investor Relations & Corporate Communications, at 214-977-6835.