You would be incorrect.While the transition from analog (be it U-matic, S-VHS, Betacam) is a paradigm shift, the transition from one digital format to another shouldn't have to be so painful. The CNN story suggests that because of the tools that they use, the editing tasks shouldn't be a difficult a transition.DAs aren't necessary in a digital environment; that task is accomplished with Ethernet switches. The only thing that has to change with the cameras is the new, much larger flash cards. The cameras still have the same zoom, focus and iris controls; probably even the same lenses and microphones.
The science of editing and switching hasn't changed all that much from the end-user perspective unless you're still shooting tape. I've been doing non-linear for years and while the software has changed, the underlying principles of video editing haven't.
I'm not insisting that the change is a simple matter of driving in a new van and going to work, but for ENG purposes, it isn't a whole lot more if you have people that are willing to move forward. It is made even easier once the crews see the benefit of being able to edit a package on a modest notebook computer in the same room where the news is being made.
The demand for HD content is there and they need to get to work fulfilling that demand. This isn't the leap from vidicon tube to CCD. This is a change in aspect ratio. DirecTV will need a lot more HD content to accomplish their goals and they shouldn't have to fight with entrenched engineers to get it.
Think about going from standalone DOS to networked windows. DOS was very, very mature, solid, well known. Networked windows was completely different in many dimensions.
Replacing every bit of very well known, solid, mature technology with unknown immature technology is not easy. There are little things that NOBODY ever expects to be a problem. Read the station engineers' posts on avsforums local threads. You'll see horror story after horror story about "Dolby encoder died", "Audio sync failed", "complete plant rewiring", etc. Interoperability testing in the field leads to very cool troubleshooting issues--but cool ain't the term for what the producers/owners/viewers are during the real-time problems.
Its very much like the late 50's and 60's all over again...