FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell predicted Tuesday that the switch from analog to digital TV on February 17 "will be messy .. but we will get through it." In an interview with Reuters, McDowell urged TV stations to step up their informational campaigns to alert owners of analog TV sets who receive programming over the air that their sets will go dark next February unless they purchase a converter box. Not mentioned in any of the discussion is that owners of battery-operated portable TV sets, who depend on them in case of emergencies, such as floods, fires and earthquakes, will see those devices become useless -- since no battery-run converter boxes have been manufactured.
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