Today was DTV switch day for most of the TV stations in the Middle Georgia area, which is why I'm updating the blog a little later than normal.
WPGA (ABC), WGXA (Fox), WMGT (NBC) and GPTV (PBS) all switched their signals to digital only at noon Tuesday after broadcasting both digital and analog for the past few months. The move comes in conjuction with the original FCC date of Feb. 17, even though the government ended up pushing the date back to June 12, because President Obama is worried not enough people are prepared for the switch.
Viewers with cable or satellite signals were unaffected, as were people who bought TVs within the last couple of years or people with converter boxes. People still watching with "rabbit ears," however, will only be getting a signal from WMAZ (CBS), which will broadcast an analog signal until March 17.
The stations that switched today joined WGNM, a local Christian station that made the switch several months ago. By doing the switch now, the stations are able to get rid of their antiquated equipment and save themselves several thousand dollars in power costs.
The moves went without a hitch for people who can get a digital signal, since it wasn't noticeable at all. WPGA ran an infomerical at noon to inform people once more about the switch, and WMAZ ran a small segment about the switch at the beginning of its noon broadcast.
TUESDAY'S BEST BETS: Fox begins its "American Idol" juggernaut in earnest tonight with a two-hour installment beginning at 8 p.m.
CBS counters with a full night of new stuff after a week of reruns last week, starting with "NCIS," and continuing with "The Mentalist" and "Without A Trace."
NBC airs "The Biggest Loser" at 8 p.m., followed by "Law & Order: SVU" at 10 p.m.
PBS airs a special "Frontline" at 9 p.m., which examines what led to the economic meltdown.
Most of the rest of the regular broadcast stuff are reruns. Normally, we'd be getting new episodes of everything in February because of sweeps, but sweeps was pushed back to March because broadcasters were worried about the DTV switch before the official date was pushed back to June.
On cable, there's a new "Nip/Tuck" (FX, 10 p.m.) and the penultimate episode of "Leverage" (TNT, 10 p.m.)