For Immediate Release                                                                                   
Contact: Kristin Tutino, (585) 258-0253

WXXI ENCOURAGES THE COMMUNITY TO HELP PREPARE NEIGHBORS FOR THE DIGITAL TELEVISION TRANSITION

New Analog Shut-off Date is June 12, 2009, but Preparations shouldn’t be delayed

(Rochester, New York) March 4, 2009- As WXXI continues to lead the region’s digital television transition outreach efforts, it is calling on the community to help their neighbors prepare for the switch from analog to digital, which is now planned for June 12, 2009. WXXI was one of the 12 agencies across the country selected to assist the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) with its DTV consumer education program, and was awarded a contract to implement a toll-free help center; a “street team” of DTV converter box installers; and community-based events designed to educate attendees about the transition.

WXXI is also asking those who are DTV-ready to help neighbors and family members that aren’t, by:

  • Sharing the toll-free number for WXXI’s DTV Help Center: Trained technicians and personnel staff this help center, and can answer a variety of DTV questions. Call (866)-348-9944.
  • Donating Unused DTV Converter Boxes: WXXI will get unwanted DTV converter boxes to people who need them. Drop the boxes off to WXXI at 280 State Street in Rochester between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. weekdays, or Saturdays 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
  • Donating Unused DTV Converter Box Coupons: Donate unused DTV converter box coupons to WXXI, and we’ll distribute them to those who need them. Mail the coupons to WXXI, DTV Converter Box Coupon Collection, 280 State Street, Rochester, NY 14614.
  • Helping someone obtain a coupon: If your household is eligible for a coupon, but you don’t need one, consider applying for and donating the coupon to a neighbor, senior center, community center, or WXXI, who will get it to the people who need them. Go to WXXI.org/dtv and click on “Apply for a TV Converter Box Coupon.”
  • Helping someone obtain a converter box: Drive someone, who is otherwise unable to get to a store, to purchase a DTV converter box, or use a coupon to buy a box and donate it to a neighbor, church group, senior center, or WXXI.
  • Helping someone connect a converter box: Although boxes are easy to install, the elderly or disabled may need extra help. There are multiple online resources explaining how to connect a box. Sharing your abilities with a neighbor is an incredible help.

WXXI has been engaged in a program to build community awareness and understanding about the digital transition for the past year. With the FCC contract, WXXI continues to build on the work it has already done, and is dedicating more effort in reaching those who need help the most- seniors, citizens in rural areas, disabled citizens, and minority communities.

For more information on the DTV transition, visit <WXXI.org/dtv>.

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WXXI is the essential, life-long educational media resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI puts the community first with programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of diverse community issues. Log on to wxxi.org for more information about our services and programs.

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