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Digital TV Transitions: DTV Switchover, Mobile TV, IPTV--Lessons and Projections

October 2, 2009
Columbia Institute for Tele-Information (CITI)
Columbia University
3022 Broadway (enter at 116th St)
Uris Hall, Room 330

In the United States, analog television broadcasting virtually ceased on June 12, 2009.  But other forms of television have emerged. This conference will focus on evaluating the experience of the digital broadcast switchover, and the impact of all forms of digital TV on the entertainment industry and on the viewing audience.

  • What are the effects on rural and urban consumers? 
  • How will the digital signal, which does not have the reach of the over-the-air analog signal, be extended? What have been the experiences in urban canyons, and for rural translators?
  • How has the nature of broadcast television changed as an HD and multi-channel medium?

The digital transition has also sparked other changes. Among the issues are:

  • What is actually happening with the freed spectrum?
  • How is mobile TV progressing in terms of audience and content?
  • How is Internet TV progressing as a business?
  • What are the implications for media firms? For advertisers?
  • What business models are emerging?
  • New content types?
  • Lessons from the DTV transition for other countries?
  • Regulatory implications for TV?
  • What is next?

This is the third CITI conference dedicated to the digital television transition. The first, in November 2007, analyzed the digital TV evolution. The second, in December 2008, discussed the economics of the digital television transition.


9:30am - Welcome & Overview
  • Eli Noam, Director, CITI, Professor of Finance and Economics, Columbia Business School

9:45am - Introduction 

  • An Overview of the Transition from Analog to Digital TV - Jeffrey Hart, Indiana University

10:00am - The Switchover- What Happened? 

  • Measures of the success - G. Patrick Webre, Legal Advisor to Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau, Federal Communications Commission
  • How did the networks and their affiliate stations fare? - Rebecca Campbell, President and General Manager of WABC-TV
  • Consumer Reactions to the Transition, John Carey, Fordham University
  • Moderator:  Jeffrey Hart, Professor, Indiana University

11:00am - Coffee break

11:15am - Going forward 

  • Who has not received over-the-air service? - Paul Rappoport, Temple University
  • What were the disruptions in June 2009? - David D. Oxenford, Partner, Davis White Tremaine, LLP, Washington, D.C. Office
  • Where Hollywood Meets Start-up - James Wynne, Consultant, AFI Digital Content Lab and Columbia University Business School
  • Solutions for the black holes left by the transition to digital broadcast- Saul Shapiro, President, Metropolitan TV Association
  • Moderator:  Darcy Gerbarg, Senior fellow, CITI

12:15pm - Lunch

2:00pm - New Opportunities?

  • New technology new user options- Greg Harper, President, Harpervision, Inc
  • The Next Generation Television Network, Justin Day, Co-Founder,
  • Competing with digital media content - Daniela Bartosova, Senior Lecturer in Media Management, London Metropolitan Business School and CITI Visiting Scholar
  • Moderator:  Robert Atkinson, Director of Policy Research, CITI

3:00pm - Coffee Break

3:15pm - Impact of DTV Transition on the Business of Delivering Entertainment

  • The New Entertainment Industry Economics - Harold Vogel
  • Audience measurement and Advertising Dollars - Brian Fuhrer, SVP, Media Program Leader, The Nielsen Company
  • A Broadcast Perspective on the Digital Switchover, James Miller, Adjunct Professor of Law, American University full length paper
  • The Market for Mobile TV - Jonathan Barzilay, Senior Vice President Programming & Advertising, FLO TV
  • Moderator: James Alleman, Professor Emeritus, University of Colorado 

4:00pm - Summary Comments

  • James Alleman, Professor Emeritus, University of Colorado

4:15pm - Reception

Conference Organized by James Alleman, Darcy Gerbarg, and the Columbia Institute for Tele-Information