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FCC asking for bids to help consumers install DTV converters

Discussion in 'Local Reception' started by samhevener, Mar 28, 2009.

  1. samhevener

    samhevener Godfather

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    Feb 23, 2006
    A story in Friday's USA Today indicated the FCC is looking for bids from organizations that will help consumers intall their DTV converters. The shutdown of Feb showed that many viewers are having serious problems with the shutdown. The FCC expects to spend about $90 million on this program taken from the DTV budget. Full story here: http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/2009-03-26-help-for-dtv-installation_N.htm
     
  2. Phil T

    Phil T Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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    I looked at the application. It is 40 pages. You have to be able to do 250 a week for 8 weeks.

    To bad they can't give leads to tech savvy individuals who might want to help out a few of their neighbors.
     
  3. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I hate to say I told you so... no wait, I don't hate that.. I love saying that :)

    First it was "I demand my converter"... now it's "someone must install it"... next will be, "What's an antenna and will you put it up for me"... and then "come change the batteries in my remote for me".

    This could get out of hand.
     
  4. weadjust

    weadjust AllStar

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    The Boy Scouts are doing if for free in my area. The TV local stations have run ads with phone # to get in touch with the Scouts.
     
  5. SamC

    SamC Hall Of Fame

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    All apart of the next "its just too complicated" basis for the next delay. As predicted.

    If you are too stupid to install a converter box, you are better off not watching TV.
     
  6. scooper

    scooper Hall Of Fame

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    Amen...
     
  7. n3ntj

    n3ntj Hall Of Fame

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    What has our country come to?

    Hell, give me $100 per install and I'll install these things for the morons who can't read basic install instructions that come with them. These things are so easy to install and it takes less than 10 minutes...

    I read most of the 39 page FCC document. The FCC stipulates the hours you have to offer your services (2 weekdays per week 10am to 4pm, and 2 weeknights per week 4pm to 8pm, and a weekend day) and how many (minimum) converter boxes the contractor has to install weekly. Being an electrical engineer, I can hook the thing up with my eyes closed, but working these extra hours (when I already run my own business) and get the minimum installed per week is impossible... should be interesting to see who they get to bid on this program.
     
  8. RobertE

    RobertE New Member

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    Sure installing it may take 10 minutes, but it will take 3 hours or more to explain to some people that they need to change channels with *this* remote not the tv remote. Been there done that with far to many elders. :(
     
  9. samhevener

    samhevener Godfather

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    Feb 23, 2006
    That's like saying, if you don't know how to program a computer, your too stupid to use one. I've always found that those that have are always badmouthing those who don't. It's true with income, knowledge, living conditions, and many other factors. Come on people, get a life.:mad:
     
  10. SamC

    SamC Hall Of Fame

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    Huh? Lets see.

    They is one of them there plug holes that says "Antenna". Me guess me should um plug that there cord from the antenna what used to be hooked up to my TV in it. What do you know, it only fits one way.

    Then they is another one of them there plug holes that says TV. Me guess me should plug that there cord from the TV in it. What do you know, it only fits one way.

    And then its got a juicetricity plug. Me should plug that into the juicetricity.

    And it say "put TV on channel 3". Just like a video game. Me loves playstation 'raslin.

    What do you know. Just like the directions sez, in English, Mexican, and that there Kee-bec talk too sez, also with pictures. Duhh. What time is roller derby?

    ---

    We are talking about pluging two coax cables in the back of a box and plugging it in. If a person actually does not understand that, then Vince from Scam-Wow or the "I make $6000 a month working part time" scammers will take the rest of his food stamps before the TV is warmed up.

    It is nothing like "computer programming". Its not even as complex as hooking up a computer. Its not even as complex as hooking up a toaster.

    What is going on? Obviously this idiotic program is doomed to failure. No person is going to want to be a provider, and no person who actually needs someone to hook up a box for them is ever going to understand it, or much of anything.

    So this program can "fail" just like the virtually free converter box give-a-way "failed" and then they can ask for "just one more" delay.

    Which is the plan.
     
  11. STEVEN-H

    STEVEN-H Member

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    This is not a problem of dumb people. This is a problem with morons in government. When UHF first came on the scene we had no government program to help install UHF tuners on our TV sets. We bought them and hooked them up. But, now that we have the dumbest of the dumb running Washington we need all kinds of help. These people who can not hook up a digital tuner will figure it out rather fast without government intervention. We had better start voting out all office holders in the Federal Government. We need term limits and IQ tests for these positions.
     
  12. HDTVFreak07

    HDTVFreak07 Icon

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    I have the skills to figure things out, what areas get what channels, what type of antennas certain areas would need, the patience to teach people how to use the remote, have the knowledge and skills to make one remote work for both, have the guts to go up onto a 3rd story roof for antenna installs, etc, etc, etc. So, where can I apply for this private independent contracting? I need the JOB!!! And I have the skills and knowledge!!!
     
  13. Stewart Vernon

    Stewart Vernon Roving Reporter Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    I don't think people need to know the intricate inner workings of a decoder box in order to own one... but if they can't connect/disconnect it themselves, what good is giving them one for free?

    That said... the pandora's box is now opened... and since the government funded the program, the government is likely on the hook to follow through and make sure the box works for the end-user.

    Note, I do NOT mean this in a political manner at all... This is about people and their expectations.

    Consider... if you have a family member who knows nothing about computers... and you give them one of your old computers OR sell it for a good deal. You can bet they will call you to ask questions that come up, and you may find you have taken them to raise for the forseeable future with any computer problems they might have with the computer YOU gave to them.

    That's the scenario I'm thinking is starting to evolve here with the converter boxes... Bad enough people had an entitlement/expectation of a free box... but now that they have one, the cries of "make it work since you gave it to me" will be following.
     
  14. n3ntj

    n3ntj Hall Of Fame

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    I may have to start up a 2nd private company to do this. Sounds like easy money.
     
  15. HIPAR

    HIPAR Icon

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    OK until you get into issues where you just cannot make it work for any one of the myriad reasons we all know about. You're the expert the government sent to work wonders and solve the problem. :nono:

    --- CHAS
     
  16. Richard King

    Richard King Hall Of Fame

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    Maybe it's time for a DBSTalk contracting division to do these installs. "We" have people all over the country with the required "skills". ;)
     
  17. brant

    brant Icon

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    Where did you find the RFQ?

    I went to the URL listed in the public notice, and it was a broken link.
     
  18. Phil T

    Phil T Well-Known Member DBSTalk Club

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  19. PokerJoker

    PokerJoker Godfather

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    +1 :nono:
    Precisely why I don't do that, even though I certainly could. When non-techie family or friends ask me if I can do a computer for them, I point them to the nearest warehouse club . . . (of course they usually end up calling me for help anyway - sigh.)
     
  20. paulman182

    paulman182 Hall Of Fame

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    Someday some of us will be mostly blind, with shaky hands, trying to connect the latest XYZ gadget to the back of some device that we've never looked at before.
     

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