Papers on digital broadcasting

THE CHALLENGES OF DIGITAL TELEVISION BROADCASTING IN NIGERIA

A SEMINAR PRESENTED

BY: ONUH EMMANUEL IDOKO
BSU/SS/M.Sc/09/4629

TO THE DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATON, BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI.

IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE COURSE BROADCAST SEMINAR, COM 702.

LECTURER: DR. MIKE KOMBOL.
NOVEMBER 2010.

INTRODUCTION
The digital Television transition refers to the shift from analog broadcasting to digital broadcasting. Many countries of the world have recognized the huge benefit which digital broadcasting offers and are making a huge effort to shift from analog broadcasting to digital broadcasting. The transition from analog to digital broadcasting involves many changing the transmission signals as well as making sure that members of the public buy high definition television sets and get rid of standard definition television sets. In the United States of America, February17 2009 was set as a date when broadcasting in analog will be stopped and the whole country will commerce digital broadcasting.
To this effect, the US congress passed the Deficit Reduction act of 2005. Under this Act all local stations in the US are required to from off their analog channels and start broadcasting in digital format. The transition to digital broadcasting will mark the end of free television programmes. However, this is not the case. While some television set may be affected by the change, others will not for example, television sets that receive cable and satellite signals will still receive signals from digital transmission. However, television sets that receive analog signals via antenna (these antennas have analog funers) will be out of place in the digital era. In this state of affairs, old antennas will need to be upgraded to meet up with the technology. In countries like the United States of America where digital transition is planned top take off, all analog television sets will be no longer useful and will have to be dispose of perhaps shipped to other countries of the world where analog broadcasting is still used. People who wish to continue using analog television set in the U.s will need to have a converter installed. This converter changes digital signals which are broadcast to analog signal so that the television set will be able to pick. Traditionally developing countries in Africa, Latin America and south east Asia are often the dumping ground for out molded technology. The digital transition is just one example of the factors that make developing countries recipients of technology that advanced countries no longer need Digitization programme in Nigeria commenced in Abuja on June 3, 2008, following a meeting of stake holders in the broadcast industry where forum under scored the need for Nigeria to embrace the new technology, so that the country would not be turned into a dumping ground for obsolete analog equipment reports shows that Nigeria has set June, 17,2010 as the switch- over date from the current mode of broadcasting to the netramodern digital terrestrial broadcasting the date is three years before the June 17, 2015 deadline for the entire world set by the international telecommunication union (ITU) after its congress in Geneva, Switzerland in 2006.
However the country officially stated the digitization of its broadcast industry in December 2007, following late president Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s approval, directing the national Broadcasting commission (NBC), the industry’s regulator to set motion and pilot the programme towards the target date (Adeniyi 2009).
Transmission of Digital Television Signals
Kombol (2008:14-15) state, “Digitals television usually has three elements in its services.” He goes further to identify these elements: the physical path, the assembly and the return path. The physical is responsible for the signal reaching the television screen and to assembly has to do with the presentation of programs to views. Finally, the return path is concerned with the ability f viewers of channel feed back in various forms back to the broadcaster. Digital broadcasting is different in many ways from analog broadcasting of the major differences is in the transmission of the signal. The UK cabinet office in kombol (2008,p,6) states the signal for digital television is transmitted in four different ways. These are as follows:
• Cable
• Satellite
• Digital terrestrial television
• Telephone connection (DSL)
Cable
Cable has the capacity of transmitting about 200 hundred digital television channel to viewers at home. Furthermore, cable services can also provide fast internet access and a standard telephone connection. In this respect cable regarded as versatile. This versatile nature of cable ensure the use of the returning path by viewers. The transmission standard used by cable is referred to as liberate.

Satellite
In most cases satellite provides a one digital transmission services and has a capacity for hundreds of channels. It is feasible for satellites to provide a two way path but more often than not, only a one way services is provided. The transmission standard used by stallite is referred to as “Open TV.”
Digital Terrestrial Television
The digital terrestrial television broadcast is a land based transmitter network. Signals that are broadcast via this means are received by an antenna. In this service there is no return path. Thus it is one way affair. The transmission standard used by Digital terrestrial television is referred to as “MHEG-5.”
Telephone connection (DSL)
In most advance countries of the would, the bandwidth of telephone services is increased to also convey television signals. With this technology, the viewer chooses one television program and it is transmitted to the home. This choice Statement of problem.
There is no doubt that the analog system of broadcasting has bee in existence. The analog has contributed it’s own part to the broadcast industry, and with the invention of the digital Television, it is believed that the problems inherent with the analog is solved. Though, the digital technology was introduced, it still have some challenges.
In that manner, this paper seeks to know those challenges that are posed by the digital technology and the way forward.
Research question
1. What are the implications of digital technology over the analog?
2. What challenges do the transition from analog to digital pose for the broadcast station in Nigeria?

Research method
The methodology adopted for this study is the content analysis. The data generated for this study were mainly from review of works contained in books, articles in paper and downloads from the internet.
Review of literature
1. According to Kombol (2008:9) as much as digital broadcasting sound plausible. Many developing countries will continue using analog broadcasting. For a longtime. He further states that one of the factors that militate the transition of digital broadcasting in developing countries is poverty. The digital transition is indeed very expensive. In the United States, broadcast stations are putting away analog broadcast equipment, not because it is faulty but simply because there is need to move onto digital broadcasting furthermore, poverty among the citizens of developing countries ensures that they are unable to afford television sets that efficiently receive digital broadcast signals.
Another factor that prevents a shift to digital broadcasting in Africa is the lack of trained personnel. In developing countries where there is manpower is already trained to handle analog broadcast equipment, it will be impossible to lay them off or train them again to handle digital broadcasting. In other world digital broadcast technology will render technical crew redundant especially those who are skilled in analog broadcasting.
Governments in developing countries have other pressing issues to address. Digital broadcasting is the least of the priorities for these governments. In many developing countries, the government are battling to feed hungry children and also to combat diseases such as malaria that has claims hundreds of lives each year. To governments in these countries, the battle to stay alive and healthy is yet to be won, thus digital broadcasting comes way bottom in the list of priorities. Awareness about digital broadcasting is very low in developing countries. This level of awareness is not only low among the general public but also among media professionals in these countries. In countries like Nigeria where the journalism profession is open to all entrants, there is low awareness about digital broadcasting. In this state of affairs, even the professionals are content with analog broadcasting. In this state of affairs, even the professional are content with analog broadcasting because they are ignorant of the benefits of digital broadcast. In their ignorance, many journalists in Nigeria have failed to perform a vital duty to society by forming pressure groups that will convince the government of the need to shift from analog to digital broadcasting. Most government in developing countries are confused. They lack the knowledge base to improve their society. In these developing countries, corruption is the order of the day, thus government spending on vital projects such as communication is ignored. Public officer in many developing countries do not think of the pubic good, rather they are constantly evolving schemes to divert public funds into private pockets. Apart form the aforementioned. There is lack of commitment on the part of government in developing countries to ensure this transition from digital to analog. The private sector in these countries cannot do it alone. Government has to back up and direct the efforts of to private sector. In countries like the US where there is a planned transition from digital to analog, government has been at the centre of these efforts-guiding the transition at every turn. One of the many efforts which the US government has made in the past is noted by the Federal Communication Commission (2008) thus.
As of March 1, 2007, all television receivers shipped in interstate commerce or imported into the United State must contain a digital tuner. In addition, effective may 25,2007, the commission required sellers of television receiving equipment that does not include a digital tuner to disclose at the point-of sale that such devices include only an analog tuner, and therefore will require a digital to analog converter box to receive over-the –air broadcast television after the transition date.
Transition from Analog to Digital Broadcasting in Nigeria.
the National Broadcasting commission recognizes Digitization, the convention of the broadcast and communication system from analogue to digital, as an important global movement driven by the international Telecommunication Union (ITU), that will revolutionize broadcasting as we know it’ Digitization both improves the quality of reception and ensure a more efficient use of the spectrum, which is a scarce and finite natural resource belonging of all Nigeria and held in trust by licensees. Sennett (2008) reveals that, the transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting will affect all segments in the broadcasting value chain namely: content production, transmission and reception as all will require technical upgrading to support digital, broadcast.
IN November 2007, the NBC briefed the 38th National Council on information and communication Jos on the imperatives of Digitation and urgent need for the nation to take advantage of this inevitable global phenomenon, thus, in December 2007 president Umaru Musa Yar’Adua approved that the commission should set in motion and pilot Nigeria’s digitization programme toward the target date of June 17, 2012 meanwhile, the commission in a forward looking manner, has encouraged cable (MMDS) and DTH operators to digitize their operations. All those operating in Nigeria are now making move of transmitting digital signals. Gradually, all other broadcast stations are on their march to this transformation. is often made from a wider selection of channels.
Challenges of Digital Broadcasting
Despite the overwhelming benefits of digital broadcasting, Nigeria are bound to face the following challenges resulting form the low level of our technological advancement and the income level of the individuals. Thus, the following challenged abound.
1. With the current way of picking digital signals, using atenna, viewers are limited to whatever channels the antenna picks up and the signals quality will also vary.
2. Digital television signals must not interfere with each other, and they must also coexist with analog television until it is phased out.
3. Analog switch-off would render a non-digital television obsolete, unless it is connected to an external digital tuner, an external converter box for digital signal
4. The adoption of a broadcast standard incompatible with existing analog receiver has created the problem of large number of analog receivers being discarded during digital transition in the US where an estimate of 99 million unused analog TV receivers are currently in the storage. Same thing is bound to happen in Nigeria.
5. The economic power of all broadcast station to transit to digital before 2012 is a big threat. Seeing that million of naira are involved in this transition.
Theoretical framework.
This paper is anchored on the Diffusion and Technological Determinism theory. The theory was propounded in 1086 by Everret Rogers. The proposition of the involves using communication to transfer technological innovation from development agencies to their client so as to create an appetite for change through raising a climate for modernization among member of the public. This is the diffusion side of the theory. On the other hand, there are critical role for technology in the employment of mass communication for development.
The technology in mass communication serves as dual role in diffusion. They are channels for massages, as well as messages for innovation. Another technologically deterministic approach sees technology as a value-free and politically neutral asset that value-free and political neutral asset that can be used in every social and historic context. Thus the following assumption as related this paper include:
i. An overly optimistic view shares the conviction that, the development and application of technology can resolve all varied problems of Mankind of course those that are physical
ii. That technology is the proponent factor for development
iii. That technology is an inexorable, irresistible and overwhelming force, which is a message in its own right. (Anaeto et al 2008: 178-170).
The diffusion and technological determinism theory is used based on the fact that, technology according to the theory is a message and an answer to all human physical need. And since technological innovations can imbibe development through the diffusion of the message it carries, then there is no doubt that digital broadcasting is the answer to all broadcast problems associated with the analog.

Review OF Related Empirical Study.
Migrating Implication of Digital Broadcasting and its challenges for Nigerian.
Adeniyi (2009) asserts that, the international Telecommunication union’s position on migration was informed by the development in telecommunication technologies which enable a more efficient use of radio frequency spectrum and improved quality picture and audio. Previously everyone relied on radio spectrum for TV transmission but this had inherent restriction posed by the analog transmission. Adjacent analog transmission were found to be subject to interference, forcing the regulatory bodies to leaves space between channel and only allocate a small percentage of available spectrums for transmission, to ensure high quality transmission and reception throughout the regions served.
All these disadvantage have been surpassed with the arrival of digitization, which gives better clarity and quality of signal and spectrum efficiency. Digitized TV signals in particular are clearer and stronger in their audio and video output.
Since digital technology has opened a world of possibilities for broadcasting, a huge spectrum will be available for radio and television broadcast in the country. As a result, more frequencies or wavelengths will be available broadcasting as TV sets would now do much more than receive broadcast signals. Nigerians that do not want to be left behind in the new technological development have two options. The first is for, them to buy a digital- complaint television set to enable them enjoy the benefits of the new technology. The second is that even with the analog system, one can set “set-top-box” which is a digital analog signal converter. It is like the ordinary decoder that easily plugs into a television set which will allow you to continue to get your programme signals.

Discussion of Findings
The analysis made from all these postulations show that, for every good thing to come by, there are also numerous challenge to bedevil the development. The following are the finding arrived at in this analysis.
i. There is a new technology with a more efficient way of transmitting quality sound and pictures by turning them into computerized data.
ii. The resulting implication or benefits of digital television over analogue include: quality content production, good reception, possibilities of huge spectrum for broadcasting, access to internet, lets bandwidth, quality signal, supporting different picture format and aspect ratio, robust to noise easy to scramble signals etc.
iii. The arrival of digital broadcasting in this part of the continent also constitute threat to the old analog equipment by rendering some obsolete. The use of converter box and the low economic power of both some broadcast station and individuals to transit conveniently is a big problem.
Conclusion and Recommendation
A Chinese philosopher, Lac-Tzu (604 BC-531 BC) in his book “the way of Lac-Tzu stated that, a journey of a thousand miles begin with a single step” there is no doubt that digital broadcasting is a solution to analog problem, Nigerians should start embracing this technology so that it will not look like a fire brigade approach by 2012 which is the deadline for Nigerian transition to digital broadcasting. The fore knowledge of this will render most of the analog equipment obsolete and many home out off from when environment these as Nigeria seeds to join the rest of the world migration from analog to digital broadcast, the NBC would have to play a major role in providing the enabling environment to achieve the set objective come 2012.

REFERENCES:
Adenyi, O. (2009, “Digital Broadcasting Migrating Implication and challenges for Nigeria”. Retrieved from:http://www.
Technologytime.com./post/digital-broadcasting-Migration-implications-and challenges -for-Nigeria.
Aneot, S.G, Onabajo, O.S and Osifeso, J.B. (2008), Models and Theories of communication: Bowie. African Renaissance Book incorporated.
Sennitt, A. (2008) “Digital Television Transition “Retrieved from htt://blogs.rnw.n//mediannetwork/Nigeria-minister-says-switch-to digital-broadcasting-is imperative.
Kombol M.A (2008) Digital consideration in Television production. Switches and pluggz. Makurdi.

NAME:
ITYOUGH, NGODOO COMFORT
BSU/SS/MSC/09/4608

TOPIC:
DIGITAL TELEVISION BROADCASTING IN NIGERIA: ISSUES AND OPPORTUNITIES.

COURSE: COM 702: BROADCAST JOURNALISM SEMINAR.

LECTURER:
KOMBOL, M.A. (Ph.D).

NOVEMBER, 2010

ABSTRACT
This write-up deals with the issues and merits of digital television broadcasting in Nigeria. base on the discussion it was found that digital television broadcasting when commenced will help to improve accessibility, sharp picture quality, good and efficient programming, and so on. However, there are also some problems that are likely to affect the new technology such as technical know-how, inadequate skilled labour, and lack of equipment, lack of income, incessant government regulations, and censorship and so on. It is recommended therefore that government and other stakeholders should ensure that the problems.

Introduction
Digital television transition is the technological evolution and advance from analogue terrestrial television, which broadcasts land based (terrestrial) signals. The purpose of digital terrestrial television, similar to digital versus analogue in other platforms such as cable, satellite, telecoms, is characterized by reduced use of spectrum and more capacity than analogue, better-quality picture, and lower operating costs for broadcast and transmission after the initial upgrade costs. A terrestrial implementation of digital television technology uses aerial broadcasts to a conventional antenna (or aerial) instead of a satellite dish or cable connection.
Competing variants of digital terrestrial television technology are used around the world. Advanced Television Standards Committee ATSC is the one used in North America and South Korea, an evolution from the analogue National Television Standards Committee standard NTSC. ISDB-T is used in Japan, with a variation of it used in Brazil, Peru, Argentina, Chile, Venezuela, Ecuador and most recently Costa Rica and Paraguay, while DVB-T is the most prevalent, covering Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Colombia, Uruguay and some countries of Africa. DMB-T/H is China’s own standard (including Hong Kong, though Hong Kong’s cable operators use DVB); the rest of the world remains mostly undecided, many evaluating multiple standards. ISDB-T is very similar to DVB-T and can share front-end receiver and demodulator components. The switch over from analogue to digital in Nigeria is to take place in the year 2012.
DTV is transmitted on radio frequencies through the airwaves that are similar to standard analogue television, with the primary difference being the use of multiplex transmitters to allow reception of multiple channels on a single frequency range (such as a UHF or VHF channel) (Wikipedia,2010).
The amount of data that can be transmitted (and therefore the number of channels) is directly affected by the modulation method of the channel. The modulation method in DVB-T is COFDM with either 64 or 16 state Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM). In general a 64QAM channel is capable of transmitting a greater bit rate, but is more susceptible to interference. 16 and 64QAM constellations can be combined in a single multiplex, providing a controllable degradation for more important Programme streams. This is called hierarchical modulation. New developments in compression have resulted in the MPEG-4/AVC standard which enables three high definition services to be coded into a 24 Mbit/s European terrestrial transmission channel.
The DVB-T standard is not used for terrestrial digital television in North America. Instead, the ATSC standard calls for 8VSB modulation, which has similar characteristics to the vestigial sideband modulation used for analogue television. This provides considerably more immunity to interference, but is not immune — as DVB-T is — to multipath distortion and also does not provide for single-frequency network operation. This write takes a look at the problems and prospects of digital television broadcasting.
Statement of the Problem
Generally the advent of digital television will bring remarkable, exciting changes to broadcasting. Consumers will have many more choices from broadcast television, from sharp high-definition television programming and multicasting of niche-audience channels to new information services and computer-interactivity. Broadcasters will have new opportunities to develop innovative programming and services, along with new revenue streams and market franchises. DTV will help broadcasting evolve and compete in the new media environment, while ensuring that public interest needs are still met through over-the-air broadcasting. however, in the Nigeria the switch to digital television in the year 2012 is just very near.Abbas (2010) observes that it is coming on the heels of similar ‘self set’ deadlines of mostly European and African countries like Britain, Sweden, France, Kenya and South Africa among others. What remain so problematic is the likely challenges and successes of this new transition in Nigeria. This is the issue the study seeks to address

Research Questions

1. What are the issues associating with digital television broadcasting in Nigeria?

2. What is the impact of digital television broadcasting in Nigeria?

Operational Definition of Terms
– Digital Television transition: The digital television transition is a process in which analog television broadcasting is converted to and replaced by digital television. This primarily involves both TV stations and over-the-air viewers; however it also involves content providers like TV networks, and cable TV conversion to digital cable (Wikipedia, 2010).
– Broadcasting: is a process of disseminating information through electromagnetic waves to a large proportion of users (audience).
Review of related literature

Digital television broadcasting
Digital television is a new technology for transmitting and receiving broadcast television signals. Using an additional 6 megahertz (MHz) of broadcast spectrum temporarily granted by Congress and the FCC for a period of no fewer than 9 years, broadcasters will be able to develop a diverse range of new digital television programming and services while continuing to transmit conventional analog television programming on their existing allotments of spectrum, as required by the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (Telecommunications Act of 1996).
A digital standard is superior to analog because of its greater accuracy, versatility, efficiency, and interoperability with other electronic media. Digital signals also have the advantage of generating no noise or “ghosting,” and being more resistant to signal interference. Within the range of the signal, this results in a perfect signal.
One of the primary rationales for the Nation’s transition to digital television is high-definition television, or HDTV. This transmission standard contains up to six times more data than conventional television signals and at least twice the picture resolution. HDTV images have a 16-to-9 aspect ratio (the ratio of width to height), providing a wider image than the 4-to-3 ratio that has characterized television since 1941. This higher resolution and different aspect ratio makes HDTV images substantially more vivid and engaging than the images produced by the existing television format, and that effect is enhanced by five discrete channels of CD-quality audio.
But DTV is not just about HDTV. As a digital (and not analog) signal, DTV enables broadcasters to offer a variety of innovations. Instead of sending an HDTV signal of 19.4 megabits per second, for example, a broadcast station can send as many as five digital “standard-definition television” (SDTV) signals, each of which might consist of 4 to 5 megabits per second. Although SDTV images are not as sharp as HDTV, they are superior to existing television images. This new capacity, known as “multicasting” or “multiplexing,” is expected to allow broadcasters to compete with other multichannel media such as cable and direct broadcast satellite systems. Moreover, as new advances in compression technology occur in the years ahead, broadcast stations are expected to fit even more SDTV signals into the same spectrum allotment.
Another DTV capability is the ability to provide new kinds of video and data services, such as subscription television programming, computer software distribution, data transmissions, teletext, interactive services, and audio signals, among others. Referred to as “ancillary and supplementary services” under the Telecommunications Act of 1996, these services include such potentially revenue-producing innovations as stock prices, sports scores, classified advertising, paging services, “zoned” news reports, advertising targeted to specific television sets, “time-shifted” video programming, and closed-circuit television services.
These choices — HDTV, multicasting and innovative video/information services — are not mutually exclusive. Within a single programming day, a broadcaster will have the flexibility to shift back and forth between different DTV modes in different day parts. During daytime, for example, a station might show four SDTV channels; during primetime, programming might switch to a single HDTV program such as a movie or wide-screen sporting event. Because different gradations of HDTV and SDTV picture resolution are possible — there are 18 different transmission formats — a station can mix and match video programming with data services, provided that the various signals fit within the 6 MHz bandwidth.
All this suggests that over the next 10 to 15 years, DTV will usher in a sweeping transformation of broadcast television — its programming and services, its revenue sources, its ownership structures, and its outside partnerships. Although many existing programming genres and styles will surely continue, innovations in video programming and information services will arise fueled in no small part by the anticipated convergence of personal computer and television technologies. In addition, broadcast television may develop new services in alliance with other telecommunications media — a scenario made possible by digital code, which is increasingly becoming the common language for all electronic media.
It is difficult to predict which programming and revenue models broadcasters will choose to develop as they commence DTV transmission. The Telecommunications Act of 1996, which authorized the FCC to give an additional 6 MHz channel to existing broadcasters for digital transmissions, is deliberately flexible. Much will depend on the competitive opportunities that broadcasters identify as promising, emerging market conditions, and the regulatory ground rules.
To beat the global timetable of transition from Analogue to Digital broadcasting and meet President Yar’ Adua’s Vision 2020, the Nigerian Communication Satellite and DIGITECH Broadcasting Ltd have gone into partnership. During the signing of a Memorandum of Under-standing (MOU), the Mana-ging Director NIGCOMSAT, Ahmed Rufai Lawal, said the venture would afford Nigerians opportunity to have access to all Nigerian television and radio stations as well as over 200 other channels. The NIGCOMSAT Boss said the solution based joint venture is to ensure that the historically disadvantaged Nigerians now have access to quality communication without necessarily paying exorbitant fees for the opportunity. Lawal said the intent of this joint venture is also to redress the long term damage to the Nigerian broadcasting environment created by years of technological dumping and inconsistent approach to signal and content distribution by practitioners.
“The unfortunate outcome is that the man in the village who through no fault of his has little access to information. In most cases, the individual has only one source of information his state Radio or TV or from NTA and FRCN. This type of Nigerian may not travel outside his geographic state of origin which in effect handicaps him sociologically.”
Shola Ajay, MD DIGITECH Broadcasting Ltd, is of the opinion that information is a right and not a privilege therefore Nigerians especially in the rural areas should be able to receive signals from all over the country and around the world. This is where the partnership comes in. DIGITECH takes cognizance of the fact that service of this magnitude will both be costly infrastructurally, and elaborate in the real intention of all Nigerian broadcasters to take advantage of this service (Adaobi,2010).
Further more, Ajay stated that the focus of the partnership is to allow broadcasters concentrate on the provision of quality content in order to realize maximum advertising revenue. “The ratio of content funding to transmission cost for most broadcast organizations is very lopsidedly in favour of the latter. The reversal of the trend would simply make these organizations formidable since they can now compete for advertising naira effectively.” Again the venture is to significantly lower the entry cost for new broadcasting practitioners and also to ensure that technical infrastructure is not deterrent to broadcast practitioners. Rufai noted that “this joint venture conclude the fact that existing broadcasters and prospective new pay TV and licensed Free to Air operators will have access to DIGITECH’s facilities and those of its overseas partners such as TELEMEDIA. He added that it will serve as an open door to attract foreign investors as it will showcase the untapped Nigerian cultural resources which will in the long run increase its foreign direct investment. Apart from millions of dollars which would be accrued into the government coffers, Rufai explained, “the DIGITECH service will afford broadcasters two distinct advantages amongst which their signal instantly becomes national whereby any citizens of Nigeria can receive their signals anywhere and West Africa through a decoder”. The joint venture when operational will provide a level playing ground for all broadcasters to compete on the basis of content and not access to hardware. The project is to commence within the next six months.
Advantages and Disadvantages of DTV Broadcasting

A. Advantages
The witch over to digital television broadcasting will bring about the following benefits in broadcasting:
-Progressive scanning, as explained below, is a more demanding technical format than the current “interlaced scanning” that will allow for a smoother sequencing of video picture frames and interactivity between computers and television sets.
-Square pixels, or the most basic element of video image data, facilitate the interoperability of the new video standard with other imaging and information systems, including computers. With 1,920 pixels per line displayed on 1,080 lines per frame, the resolution of HDTV images is much sharper than that of the current NTSC format.
-increased frame rates allow a smoother simulation of motion in television signals; the more frames per second, the more realistic the portrayal of motion. The ACATS proposal allowed three different frame rates—24, 30, and 60 frames per second.
-Additional lines per frame allow video images to be sharper in resolution. The current NTSC format provides for 525 horizontal lines of picture data; the HDTV standards provide for either 720 or 1080 horizontal lines.
-Different aspect ratios give viewers a wider field of view, so that the viewing experience is more encompassing, in the manner of a film. In the existing NTSC format, the aspect ratio, or relation of the width to the height of the screen, is 4-to-3. In HDTV, the aspect ratio is a wider, more rectangular 16 to 9 aspect ratio, which is the same dimension as 35-millimeter film.
-Sound is more vivid in digital television, too, because there are five discrete channels of CD- quality audio, along with a sub-woofer channel for deeper sounds. Over time, DTV programming is likely to exploit these new capabilities.
Although these technical improvements would help make television programming more appealing, the overarching goal of the ATV standard, the FCC later stated, is to:
-Promote the success of a free, local television service using digital technology. Broadcast television’s universal availability, appeal and the programs it provides—for example, entertainment, sports, local and national news, election results, weather advisories, access for candidates and public interest programming such as educational television for children—have made broadcast television a vital service.
B. Issues
In as much as the switch over will bring a lot of benefits in the field of broadcasting, there are also some issues that are like to hinder this development. These issues include:
What Kinds of DTV Programming and Services to Offer?
Because of the inherent versatility of digital transmissions and the still-evolving terms of market competition, how broadcasters will use their digital signals is unclear. One of the first- threshold choices broadcasters must make is whether to transmit HDTV programming, multicast, datacast, or to employ some combination of these.
Questions remain on how much revenue the new channels — whether HDTV, SDTV, or data — can actually generate. Will broadcasters cannibalize their primary signals as they pursue new DTV opportunities, or will they expand their franchises? Furthermore, anticipating the nature of DTV programming and services is made complex by the new competition among different media, especially cable, direct broadcast satellite, and the Internet. Digital television offerings may also be affected by new ownership patterns for television broadcasting, which in turn might blur the boundaries between once-distinct media. Some broadcasting experts speculate that information providers may see television stations as distribution vehicles for their data, which may encourage new corporate owners to acquire broadcast stations.
Technical Issues
Only a few technical problems stand in the way of a full rollout of digital television. The broadcast and cable industries have agreed to channel numbering for virtual channels with multicasting Investment Costs
Consumer Demand for DTV
Another uncertain variable is how quickly consumers will see value in DTV programming and services, and choose to buy DTV sets. Perhaps the most significant factor here is the cost of DTV sets. Original projections by manufacturers indicate that the new television sets will cost between $1,000 to $1,500 more than conventional high-end projection sets, or about $4,000 to $5,000.
The first high-definition television sets offered for sale in September 1998 were, however, priced at $8,000; about 100,000 are expected to be manufactured in 1998(30)– out of a universe of more than 24 million conventional sets expected to be sold in 1998. A Samsung Electronics Company official estimates that HDTV sets will sell for $3,000 by the year 2002, considerably higher than the $500 or less that most Americans now pay for new television sets.
But as new digital programming and services become more plentiful, it is expected that consumer demand for DTV sets will rise and set prices will decline.
Must-Carry Regulations
Before digital television becomes fully operational, several regulatory issues must be resolved. One of the most important is clarifying how the must-carry provisions of the Telecommunications Act will apply to digital television. Historically, cable televisions systems have had to carry the signal of local broadcasters, as mandated by the 1992 Cable Act and affirmed in the 1997 Supreme Court ruling of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. v. FCC (“Turner II”). The arrival of digital television transmission raises questions about how must-carry precedents should apply in the new television environment. Should cable systems be obliged to carry both the analog and digital television signals during the transition period, and only the analog signal, as they have under the existing must-carry rules? When cable systems do carry the digital signal, should they be obliged to carry the same amount of bandwidth as they currently do, even though that same spectrum may be carrying several programming channels and perhaps subscriber-based services? Do analog and digital broadcasts constitute separate “broadcasting stations” for the purposes of retransmission consent and digital broadcast signal carriage?
Resolving must-carry and retransmission consent requirements will affect the kind of access that cable households will have to digital television signals, what stations and channels are available over cable systems, and the rates that subscribers will have to pay. There is also concern about how must-carry rules in the new DTV environment might affect noncommercial video sources such as the Public Broadcasting System, and public affairs and public access cable channels. To help it address the must-carry/retransmission consent issue, the FCC released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on July 10, 1998, which proposes seven alternatives for implementing the must-carry provisions of the Telecommunications Act.
Citing and Construction of DTV Towers
Another pending Notice of Proposed Rulemaking invites comment on whether Federal law should allow the preemption of local zoning rules to facilitate the siting and construction of digital broadcast towers. This proceeding was initiated in August 1997 in response to a petition by the National Association of Broadcasters, which expressed concern that the local approval process for new towers could take too long and delay the introduction of DTV.
Public Interest Obligations
Finally, one of the largest unresolved issues is what public interest obligations should govern digital broadcasters in the new media marketplace. In the Telecommunications Act of 1996, Congress specified that broadcasters would continue to serve as trustees of the public’s airwaves and that public interest obligations should extend into the digital television environment:
Nothing in this section shall be construed as relieving a television broadcasting station from its obligation to serve the public interest, convenience, and necessity. In the Commission’s review of any application for renewal of a broadcast license for a television station that provides ancillary or supplementary services, the television licensee shall establish that all of its program services on the existing or advanced television spectrum are in the public interest.
Although Congress’ general intent is clear, the substantive meaning of public interest obliga- tions in the new television environment is likely to change. To determine the precise contours of a DTV licensee’s public interest obligations, the FCC plans to initiate a rulemaking in the near future. This process will be enhanced by understanding the historical development of the public interest standard in broadcasting, which is the focus of Section II of this Report. This is followed in Section III by the Advisory Committee’s formal recommendations.
For all the challenges that remain, the opportunities to build a new, more robust broadcasting system have never been greater. The sheer technological capabilities of DTV offer sweeping possibilities for program creativity as well as for the increased competitiveness of broadcasting and public interest service. The most important task at hand is to devise the most appropriate structures to facilitate all these goals.
The December 1997 Harris Corporation’s survey of broadcasters suggested that the average cost to broadcasters of converting to digital would be in the vicinity of $5.7 million. This sum is “soft” in the sense that television stations that serve the larger urban markets will likely bear greater expenses than smaller stations. The timing of purchase of DTV equipment will make a significant difference as well. In addition, the kinds and amount of equipment that stations choose to buy for local origination of DTV programming can vary immensely. For all these reasons, previous estimates of DTV conversion costs of $6 million to $10 million per station are expected to decline rapidly, probably even faster than the 20 percent annual price decrease that now prevails.

Conclusion/Recommendation

from the foregoing discussion it can be concluded that digital television broadcasting when commenced will help to improve accessibility, sharp picture quality, good and efficient programming, and so on. However, there are also some numbers of problems such as technical know-how, inadequate skilled labour, and lack of equipment, lack of income, incessant government regulations, and censorship and so on. It is recommended therefore that government and other stakeholders should ensure that the problems identified above should be properly handled before the take off of the project in the year 2012.

REFERENCES
Adaobi, N (2010) Nigeria set to beat global timetable on digital transition
http://www.abujainquireronline.com/fetcher.php?fid=2632,2010

Daramola, I (2003) Introduction to Mass Communication. Lagos: Rothan Press Ltd.
Ekeh, D. (2009) Nigerian television at 50: Challenges of digitalization Retrieved fromhttp://www.bizcommunity.com/Article/157/66/40113.html on November, 2010.
Service, Fourth Report and Order (1996) Advanced Television Systems and Their Impact Upon the Existing Television Broadcast
Telecommunications Act (1996, 1996). This Act amended the Communications Act of 1934
Wikipedia (2010) Digital television transition. Retrieved from
thhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_television_transitione on November, 2010.

Wikipedia (2010) Digital terrestrial television
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_terrestrial_television

THE ELECTRONIC MEDIA AND SUSTAINABLE DEMOCARCY IN NIGERIA

A SEMINAR PAPER PRESENTED

BY: ONUH, EMMAUNEL IDOKO
BSU/SS/M.Sc/09/4629

TO THE DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATON, BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI.

IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE COURSE BROADCAST SEMINAR, COM 702.

LECTURER: DR. MIKE KOMBOL.

NOVEMBER 2010

BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
While the Babangida Transition programme was not the first attempt to return the country to civil rule, it was, no, doubt, the most elaborate involving far more. Institutional and political reforms than the 1976 -1979 programmes. The establishment of a number of transition agencies, namely the directorate for social mobilization centre for Democratic studies, and the creation of the ( most powerful electoral agency ever) National Electoral commission, were intended to change the character and tone of Nigeria politics and thus promote democratic values and practices in the most military era. The success of any democratic experiment will to a large extent, depend on the capacity and willingness of the competing elite factions (i) to overcome their predatory tendencies and focus on the challenges of under development and (ii) to accept the need for decentralization of political power and thereby encourage popular access to and participation in decision making structures and processes.
The Electronic Media
The relatively wide reach and immediacy of the electronic media are exploited by influential individuals and groups, especially politicians who have access to them. In the western democracies, the competition for access is subtle but intense. In developing countries, the competition is less subtle government officials such as ministers, advisers or board members, maintain a strong hold on the broadcast media while denying or retracting access by opposition groups. In Africa, as in the third world regions the struggle for power among rival political ethnic and religious group is fierce and the ballot box is yet to command universal appeal. Thus the radio in particular is much sought after by coup-makers and rebel movement as it provides instant means of communication and propaganda.
The Electronic Media and the Democratic Order
There is no established democratic political system in Africa. According to Julius Nyerer in Uche (1999:24), there has been no less than 69 successful military coups d’ eta in Africa and certainly many unsuccessful ones. Besides, widespread rebellion some resulting in civil war and large – scale displacement of people have occurred in many Africa states thereby impeding the development of democratic institutions. Until quite lately when a combination of domestic circumstances and external pressures facilitated the emergence of pro-democracy movement in a number of Africa countries, opposition groups were denied outlet in the media. Elections (where they were allowed) were mere rituals, to satisfy constitutional requirements or the demands of external creditor. The results were in most cases hardly a true reflection of the wishes of the electorate.
STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Every nation in the world today is clamoring for democratic regine. In other words, every nation wishes to be ruled in civilians and even in the united nations, members are all nations to become democratic. As a result, these various nations to fight for democracy and it’s sustenance. However, any government that comes to power especially during the military era, hijack the media and places it under her control. Even the democratic leaders are not left out. They hijack the media and place it under their control.
But how successful or other wise are the electronic media championing the course and sustenance of democracy in Nigeria is what this paper sought to investigates.

RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. Are the electronic media fully utilized in Nigeria today?
2. How has the electronic media contributed to the sustenance of democracy in Nigeria?

REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
The Broadcast Industry in Nigeria
The Broadcasting industry in Nigeria has come along way from a humble beginning in 1959 and has grown into a large industry, attracting investments running into billions of naira. Today the broadcast industry boasts of several radio and television stations allowing audiences a variety of programmers’. The television industry began with the establishment of the western Nigeria television WNTV by an act of the western Nigeria parliament. Ndolo (2006:82) recalled that the WNTV was primarily a commercial venture which reflected the political atmosphere of the country at that time. The atmosphere was the period when regional loyalties and commitment were stronger than those for the federation. The commitment for regional development and competition for resource development gave impetus to the western Nigeria government headed by chief Obafemi Awolowo to start the western Nigeria television. This step was copied by other regions and the federal government. With the division of Nigeria into states, more broadcast stations were established. This is why Folarin (1991) states that the expansion of broadcast media in Nigeria has followed largely the political balkanizations of the country.
However, on April 1, 1977, Ndolo (2006) observed that the federal government promulgated decree No24 establishing the NTA after it had taken over the existing broadcasting stations in Nigeria. Part of the reason for this Ndolo states, was the over dependence on foreign programmes, which tends to devalue the cultural norms and values of the people, the tendency by state governments to use broadcasting to fight perceived enemies and challenge the federal authority, among several other reasons, from this decree promulgated by the then Obasanjo military regine, broadcast stations were lumped into two central entities: the Nigeria television authority ( NTA) and the federal radio corporation of Nigeria ( FRCN). The decree formally made broadcasting the exclusive right of the federal and state government and the broadcast industry remained under strict government control until 1992 when the government established the National Broadcasting commission (NBC) through decree 38 of 1992. The industry was essentially crippled within the long period under strict government control. The broadcasting media were predominantly propaganda outfits without much investment in quality manpower, and technical facilities.
Akpan (1990:87) lamented that the level of Nigeria television performance reflects largely the general insensitivity to finesse. He said
“ Our television production standard is a direct reflection of our lower level of refinement or delicacy of workmanship in our service, furniture, clothing items, utensils, work tools, interior and exterior decorations”
This observation was made because the industry lacked the skilled personal and technical facilities to improve on the quality of Programmes. Also the industry was largely unable to keep pale with new production trends and emerging technical facilities. One of such new frontiers of technology was the change to digital broadcasting on the state of broadcast technology. A staff writer with BBC News recalled that between 1960 and 1970, there was no recording facilities (NBC News,2002), he concluded that even now, despite some availability of these facilities, Nigeria broadcast industry still has a long way to go. He observed that broadcasting everywhere is a viable business. However, he says the country must move away from the idea of grandiose and gigantic structures and instead, use resources to embrace available new technologies in the broadcasting industry.
Television and the Broadcasting of Electioneering Campaign Debates
Electioneering campaigns in today’s television society is remarkably different from pre-television campaigns. This is because of the dimensions which television adds to campaigns, using the audio – visual touch television debates, first practice in Nigeria in 1993 between Tofa and Abiola (and the planned but aborted one between Chief Olu Falae and Chief Olusegun Obansanjo) were copied from American examples. The media have the potency to spotlight personality, the worth and the game plan of the candidate as an individual in a palpable way. If the media allow the phone in then, the electorate would have realized the person to person touch with the candidate for instance, Nigerians readily saw the type of presidents they would have had in Tofa and Abiola when both men clashed on a wide range of Issues, especially the oil subsidy issues.
The mass media especially the electronic media should however avoid an unprofessional trend, which is gaining ground in American television debates the 1960 kennedy-Nexon debates; 1980 carter-Reagan debates, 1988 Reagan-Bush debates; and the 1992 Bush-Clinton debates were cases in point, in which television debates became beauty pageant of a kind in America.
Becker and Lower (1976) observe that Mr. John F. Kennedy, who looked more handsome and more youthful than his convert part Mr Richard Nixon had the edge over the latter in the 1960 presidential debates and in the subsequent elections which the former won due to the aforesaid physical qualities. Clinton, the irresistibly good looking man, was equally so advantages in the 1992 presidential debate he had with the then incumbent, President George Bush (snr) whom he trashed at the polls.
Fortunately Americans know who to combine appearance with other intellectual abilities, Nigerians should be taught to do so, and attach rather than on physical appearance. At least Clinton’s media analysis in America also got interest in one other point, the reactions of the television anchor person and his obvious dispositions toward the candidates. These disposition other ways to display prejudice or balanced judgment, even instinctively. Thus the way the anchor person smiles, asks questions and react to answers, including the use, nature and tone of follow-up questions can reveal sympathy or absence of it for any of the candidates either as a consequence of general organizational partisanship support for any candidate party or those of the television anchorperson, as an individual.
It is instructive then that the media learn the correct focus. That is knowing that the place of television remains an important source of political news that gives flesh to the bony hard news. This is the way to have potent effect on people’s behavior in the political system.

The Nigerian Experience.
In organizational terms Nigeria broadcasting stations fall in to the statutory corporation type and are thus formally free of direct government control. Yet government is not always able to resist the temptation to interfere, sometimes with dire consequences, for managers and professionals who resist such pressures.
To popularize and sustain democracy, radio and television organization would have to air more than one point of view on one controversial political issues, educate the audience on their political and constitutional rights, provide for an objective debate of policy issues, promote accountability in public office and expose boardroom intrigues and improper business deals. Besides, the broadcast media should promote the activities of pressure group, especially professional associations, intellectuals, artiste and human rights association who tend to serve as the conscience of society. Indeed, the electronic media should promote freedom of expression and freedom of association and seek to enhance the protection of ordinary citizens and minority group under the law.
Sotunmbi in Uche (1999:215) is of the opinion that broadcasters should have the freedom to determine the philosophy, content and mode of execution of their programmes without external pressure or interference.
However, against the background of government ownership and control, the electronic media are not always able to champion the cause of the weak and the underprivileged nor, indeed can they regularly spotlight the activities of pressure group without the risk of official displeasure. Besides government, however, powerful, private individuals and groups which seek to suppress information considered negative to interests or to high light events which are favourable to them even if doing so, might jeopardize the interests of their competition also encroach on the freedom of the media.
Election coverage
Political campaigns and elections are a very serious business, a life and death struggle for control and allocation of scare resources.
Invariable, the looser hardly have a second chance and when they do, they are guaranteed to lose again, as the ruling party employs the state apparatus to ensure it’s victory. Government and opposition functionaries make inflammatory speeches rather than engage in reasoned debates and party supporters, mostly young and unemployed, are involved in bloody clashes, arson and looting of public property. How can the electronic media report these events without aggravating the situation?
A problem of a different kind is how to stimulate public interest in electronics. After more than two decades of military or one party rule in Nigeria, a generation of young voters have emerged who have little experience of an orderly and peaceful competitive political system to prepare them as future participant (either as votes or candidates) in free election for the order generation, the manipulation of results have led to apathy and cynicism. According to sotunmbi (1999:215) the new breed of politicians behaves like a reincarnation of old, with all his familiar tricks, making promises he might never keep, and seeking to manipulate the electoral process to his advantage despite the enactment of strict electoral laws.
Yet the media must encourage the electorate to overcome their distrust of the politicians and stimulate their faith in the new political institutions and processes. So, reporting the election campaigns is interspersed with exhortation of the prospective voter to access the candidate, and critically examine his programme, to enable him to make a proper choice. Jingle are broadcast urging citizens of adult age to use their votes judiciously, explaining the voting procedure time and place and generally extolling the virtues of peaceful and orderly conduct at the polling station.
Party functionaries are invited to talk to the audience on the party manifesto according to an agreed timetable. The duration of time allocated to each party is the same and care is taken to ensure that the broadcast are scheduled such that no political party is seen to have gained an undue advantage over the other.
In NTA, a complaints committee, headed by the general manager, existed in each station to consider petitions by aggrieved party officials and where applicable, grant a right of reply.
Coverage of election proper is a daunting task given the size of the country and the large number of polling station which in national elections, exceed two thousand, manpower technical and financial resources are mobilized to ensure effective coverage of voting and rapid and accurate dissemination of result obtained from the Electoral commission. Panels of analysts are organized to discuss the result and make projection in accordance with past performance of the parties and previous voting trends.
Sotunmbi (1999:216) however opines that despite the persistent underfunding of the electronic media, the enormous investments in the coverage of political campaigns and elections is unavoidable given the significance of these event s as the vital means by which politicians obtain popular mandate for governance. Yet the election period is usually characterized by verbal and physical combat resulting in general insecurity of life and properly. When elections are organized by a departing military administration (as in 1979, and 1987) the level of violence seems to be reduced and results are generally a fair reflection of popular will. Thereafter, however, the struggle for power begins anew. For the ruling party, the objective is to stay in power beyond the next elections which are not even due, while for the opposition the aim is to discredit and if possible, dislodge the governing party and take control of government without necessarily waiting for the next election. Soon after government officials begin to tighten control over publicly owned electronic media to reduce the opposition party share of airtime. Professionals who raise objections are branded as saboteurs and are either shoved aside or their services are altogether dispensed with. On the other hand, the pliable and compromising staffs are rewarded with promotions and other inducement. Eventually, division emerge within the organization and espirit de crop is seriously weakened for the broadcasting stations, what follows is a loss of credibility and steady decline in patronage.
Ownership Structure
From the preceding analysis, it is clear that government monopoly of the electronic media is a major constraint on performance and credibility. To the extend that broadcasting organizations are perceived as propaganda tools, it is unlikely that government would even allow them to propagate, on a regular and consistent basis, democratic values and practices. Indeed, the constitutional provision which states that
“The press, radio and Television and other agencies of the mass media shall be free to uphold the fundamental objectivities and uphold the responsibility and accountability of the government to the people”.
Sotunmbi (1999:217) further opines that politicians regularly and openly subscribe to the notion of freedom of the press, no doubt, without the slightest intention of allowing it in practice. While in opposition politicians invoke the fundamental Human Rights provision in the constitution, to state themselves against arbitrary use of state power by government officials. But as soon as they are in government they breach the democratic rules and norms they swore to uphold and defend.
Sotunmbi (1999:217) further opines that analyst would have to wait and see whether the ever-present threat of future military coups would after established attitudes to and perception of state power primarily as a means of self preservation and self aggrandizement. Early indications suggest that no attitudinal transformation has yet occurred. He futher states that within one year of assumption of office of elected civilian Governor in 1991, no less than Ten(10) chief executive officers of state – owned broadcasting stations had been removed from office. For the survivors, the handwriting is on the wall. The new civilian proprietors, like their military predecessors, retained a firm grip on the electronic media thereby inhabiting the development of people- oriented programmes.
For broadcasting to play its constitutionally assigned role, the ownership structure should be diluted to remove government domination and promote private ownership. The establishment of the national Broadcasting commission in 1992, is therefore an important development as it is mandated to facilitate and regulate the growth of private electronic media. Significantly, the Commission is responsible for receiving, considering and investigating complaints from individual and bodies [corporate or incorporate] regarding the contents of a broadcast and the conduct of a broadcasting station.
If the commission is able to acquire the autonomy and authority required performing its tasks effectively and fairly, it should be able to bring about a reduction in proprietonial interference in broadcasting. To the extent that the commission is authorized to establish and disseminate a national broadcasting code and set standards with regard to the content and quality of material for broadcast, it is expected that broadcast standards will rise especially with newly licensed private station competing with government owned stations for audience loyalty and advertisement revenue. More significant are the principle of equity and fairness which the commission is expected to uphold. In essence, aggrieved individual, political parties and pressure group can report offending station to the commission and expect to obtain redress, which in serious cases, may result in suspension or revocation to license.
Yet, ultimately, the independence of the commission will depend on the governments interpretation of section 6 of Decree 38 which empowers the minister of Information to give it’s directives of a general character relating generally to particular matters with regard to the exercise by the commission of its function and it shall be the duty of the commission to comply with such directives whether and how such ministerial directives will be used should be a matter of legitimate concern to prospective investors and professionals in the industry.
The deregulation of broadcasting is never the less a welcome development as it likely to advance freedom of expression and accountability. Nigeria is a relatively large and deverse country and multiple ownership of media of information is desirable and in a deregulated economy, inevitable. Yet the liberalization of ownership of the broadcast media may not necessarily lead to greater democratic expression for the majority of the population. Indeed, most of the new private radio and television companies are likely to be located in or near urban areas to bean their signals primarily to the cities to enhance their profitability. To encourage popular interest and participation in government especially at the local and community level sotunmbi (1999:218) suggests that policymakers should promote community ownership of the electronic media, with the same zeal demonstrated in favor of community banks. In any case, to the extent that Decree 38 excludes only religious organization and political parties from ownership of radio and television license, community development association can apply for license without waiting for government initiative on the issue. With their roots in the communities community, radio/television station are likely to reflect the needs and aspiration of their localities, promote intra-community dialogue and stimulate the interests of community members in local affairs

THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK.
The work shall be anchored on Democratic- participant media theory. According to McQuail (1989:22) the central point of a democratic participant theory ties with the needs, interest, and aspirations of the active receiver, in a political society. It has to do with the right to relevant information, the right to answer back. The right to use the means of communication for interaction in small- scale setting of community, interest group, sub-culture.
McQuail goes further to state the principle of the theory as follows’:
a. Individual citizens and majority group have right of access to media (rights to communicate) and rights to served by media according to their own determination of need.
b. The organization and content of media should not be subject to centralized political or state bureaucratic control.
c. Media should exist primarily for their audiences and not for media organizations, professionals or the clients of media
d. Small scale interactive and participative media forms a re better than large-scale, one way, professionalizes media.
e. Certain social needs relating to mass media are not adequately expressed through individual consumer demands, nor through the state and it’s major institutions.
f. Communication is too important to be left to professionals.

RELEVANCE OF THE THEORY TO THE STUDY
From the above, you would agree with me that the mass media (es electronic media in this case) should be contributing to the sustenance of Democracy in Nigeria and should the Nigeria society embrace this theory, (ie the Democratic-participant), wholly and fully, then, democracy would be properly practiced in the country.

CONCLUSION
Sotunmbi (1999:218) provides the benefits of deregulation of the electronic media as follows: firstly, the emergence of a more democratic structure of ownership and control. In effect, individuals and groups including labour unions students, rural communities and professional groups are likely to have greater access to and influence on the electronic media either as shareholders or viewers/listeners. This will strengthen the capacity of the electronic media to uphold citizenship rights obligations and duties.
A second potential benefit of deregulation is increased competition for viewers and advertising patronage, resulting in better programmes and reception quality and greater audience satisfaction. Poorly managed station should be expected to collapse while the more enterprising ones thrive. The more audience oriented a station the better its chances of survival growth and profitability that more tribunal the ownership structure, the greater the possibility that the electronic media will seek to uphold constitutional right of individuals and groups and serve as a check on the excesses of government and private interests

REFERENCES
Abiodun Sotunmbi in Luke Uka Uche (1999), Mass Communication, Democracy and civil
Society in Africa. Lagos: Smagh and Company Nigeria Limited
Akpan, Emmanuel D (1990). “Beyond Message Transmission. A communicative Approach to
T.V production”. Nigerian journal of Mass Communication Vol.1 No 1
Becker, s and lower, E (1976). “Broadcasting in presidential campaign 1960 – 1970” in
Skrens(ed) The Great Debates, Cater Vs Ford 1976, Bloomingtoni Indiana University Press
Folarin, B. (1991). “The aftermath of Television Explosion in Nigeria” in Unon, Solomon O (ed)
Topical Issues in communication Arts. Vol.2, Uyo: Modern Business Press Ltd.
National Broadcasting Commission Decree No 38, 4th September, 1992, section 6.
Ndolo, I. (2006) Mass Media Systems and Society. Enugu: Rhyce Kerex Publishers
The 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, section 21.

DIGITAL TELEVISION TRANSMISSION IN CONTEMPORARY NIGERIA.
By
JONAH, ALADI ALICE. BSU/SS/M.SC/ 4610

Abstract.
The decision to shift from Analog to Digital television is in line with keeping up with new technologies for better and efficient transmission of programmes. Digital transmission deals with the conversion of data into a series of some binary numbers (1s and 0s) in order to produce better quality picture and sound. Digital television will increase the chances for various programmes at the disposal of the receivers. This study looked at the benefits of digital television transmission, the problems associated with it and gave some recommendations. The study used the Innovation – Diffusion theory since it is a new technology that is being advanced for technological development.

INTRODUCTION.
Until recently, all Televisions have run on an analog system. Analog television use complete waves to transmit pictures and sounds. The major drawback of this is that location plays an integral factor, disabling, distorting images and audio on television in rural areas. Digital Televisions are becoming commonplace, with many cable providers encouraging their customers to switch to digital television, so they can take advantage of the providers’ new services. Like the compact disc, digital television information in broken down into binary chunks. Immune to distance and interference, digital TV signals are largely free of visual snow and disruption.
Kombol, (2008) defines digital communication as “an advanced form of information transfer in which messages are converted into a series of 1s and 0s (binary digits) and sent over a channel to the receiver.”
Over the years, television transmission has grown from strength to strength. It moved from monochrome (black and white) to colour transmission. Television is a system of sending and receiving pictures and sound by means of electronic signals transmitted through wires and optical fibbers or by electromagnetic radiation. These signals are usually broadcast from a central source, a television station, to reception devices such as television sets in homes or relay stations such as those used by cable television service providers. (Microsoft Encarta 2009.)
Television transmission started in Nigeria in 1959, with the establishment of the Western Television (WSTV) in Ibadan under the leadership of Chief Obafemi Awolowo. The birth of television was borne out of the need to satisfy some political ambitions at that time. Eventually other television stations sprang up and were owned by the federal and state government until quite recently when private individuals such as Chief Raymond Dokpesi established DAAR Communications, (African Independent Television (AIT) and Ray Power.)
Television is the most widespread form of communication in the world. It has a variety of applications in the society, business and science. The most common use of television is as a source of information and entertainment for viewers in their homes. Security personnel also use televisions to monitor buildings, manufacturing plants, and numerous public facilities. These days in Nigeria, television is used even by wealthy individuals such as politicians and other public officers to project their interest and ambition.
Overview of Digital Television Transmission in Nigeria.
During the opening of the workshop on the strategies for migration to digital broadcasting in Africa in August this year, the Federal government had set 2015 as the year for full digitisation in Nigeria. In view of this, the federal government mandated all planners to incorporate digitalisation of broadcasting in the nation’s development agenda for the next 10 years in line with the United Nations’ mandate through the International telecommunication Union (ITU).
The 8th biennial conference of the African Broadcasters (Africast-2010) ended at the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, with the body urging members to see digitization as an opportunity for them to optimise their potentials in the industry.
Africast was introduced in 1996 by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), the broadcast regulator in Nigeria, as a new gateway to Africa’s broadcast market and serves as a platform for thrashing broadcast-related issues relating to Africa. It holds biennially and usually have participants drawn from professionals, academics and policy makers as well as hosts broadcast equipment manufacturers who are targeting emerging African market. The theme for the conference was: “Africa in Digital Transition: Options and Perspectives” Nigeria’s Minister for information and communication, Prof. Dora Akunyili also attended with other participants from 15 countries including the United Kingdom, USA, Japan, South Africa and Ghana, Sierra-Leone, Israel, Italy, China, Switzerland, Germany, Singapore, and France.
Digitisation has socio-cultural, political and economic implications for, especially, developing countries, citing an instance with the difficulties participants, especially some exhibitors faced in clearing their equipment for exhibition. The conference commended the Nigerian Government for providing a favourable policy environment and for taking appropriate actions on the implementation of the digitisation programme. Participants called on African broadcasters to partner with Africast to ensure that it grows to become Africa’s answer to Japanese National Association of Commercial Broadcasters (NAB) and London-based International Broadcasting Conference (IBC) and the like. (ITRealms Online).
Star TV Network in collaboration with NTA and its Chinese partners StarTimes of China launched a new pay TV service in Nigeria with over 30 channels. Startimes uses Digital Video Broadcast on Terrestrial (DVB-T), a new technology which does not require a dish. It comes with just a decoder. The technology guarantees stable signal in bad weather conditions like gusty and rainy days. It also eliminates the usual cost of installation as it does not require a satellite dish and only needs a TV antenna.
NTA Star TV Network plans to deploy StarTimes throughout Nigeria within five years of launch. For now StarTimes coverage is in Lagos, Abuja, and Port Harcourt. NTA Startimes coverage is planned to expand to more cities soon.

Digital television.
Before we look into what digital television is all about, let us divulge into what analog television is to actually help us understand and appreciate the necessity of digital television.
Understanding Analog TV
To understand digital TV, it’s helpful to understand analog TV so that you can see the differences. The analog TV standard has been in use in the United States for about 50 years. To review quickly, here are the basics of analog television transmission:
• A video camera takes a picture of a scene at a frame rate of 30 frames per second.
• The camera rasterizes the scene. That is, the camera turns the picture into rows of individual dots called pixels. Each pixel is assigned a colour and intensity.
• The rows of pixels are combined with synchronization signals, called horizontal sync and vertical sync signals, so that the electronics inside a TV set will know how to display the rows of pixels.
This final signal, containing the colour and intensity of each pixel in a set of rows, along with horizontal and vertical sync signals, is called a composite video signal. Sound is completely separate.

These video signals can be used in the following ways:
• You can broadcast them as radio waves. When you attach an antenna to your TV set and pick up local stations for free, you’re receiving broadcast television from local TV stations.
• You can record them with a VCR.
• You can transmit them through a cable television system along with hundreds of other composite signals.
When a composite video signal is broadcast over the airwaves by a TV station, it happens on a specific frequency. The composite video signal is transmitted as an AM signal and the sound as an FM signal on these channels. When the VCR wants to display its signal on a normal analog TV, it takes the composite video signal and the sound signal off the tape and then modulates those signals onto a 60-MHz (channel 3) or 66-MHz (channel 4) carrier, just like a TV station would. Instead of broadcasting it, however, the VCR sends it straight to the TV. A cable box or satellite box does the same thing.
The set-top box receives a digital signal from the satellite or cable; the box then converts that signal to an analog signal and sends it to your analog TV.

Digital transmission
Digital cameras work at a much higher resolution than analog cameras and display at a much higher resolution. Digital Television (DTV) is an advanced broadcasting technology that has transformed your television viewing experience. DTV has enable broadcasters to offer television with better picture and sound quality. It also offers multiple programming choices, called multicasting and interactive capabilities.
Digital television uses technology that records, transmits, and decodes a signal in digital form—that is, as a series of ones and zeros. This process produces much clearer picture and sound quality than analog systems. It also permits additional features to be embedded in signals including program and consumer information as well as interactivities. Early digital equipment included digital television receivers that converted analog signals into digital code. The analog signal was first sampled and stored as a digital code, then processed, and finally retrieved. ATSC digital tuners designed to decode purely digital signals are now standard on new televisions.
Digital TV reception can be affected by nearby moving vehicles, such as cars, trucks, trains and airplanes. In some instances, shadowing or reflections from these vehicles may cause digital picture to temporarily break-up or even disappear completely. If this occurs, you should try moving or reorienting your antenna to find a position that provides the most reliable reception. If you are using an indoor antenna, switching to an outdoor antenna system which may include a directional antenna or rotor could improve reception. In severe cases it may not be possible to completely eliminate the effect of nearby traffic. If reception remains unsatisfactory due to these disruptions, viewers may wish to consider alternatives such as cable or satellite service.
Digital TV reception can also be affected by severe weather conditions such as storms and high winds. These reception issues can result from fluctuations in the broadcast signal that can be caused by moving leaves and branches on trees. You can minimize the effects of high winds or storms by re-orienting your antenna to obtain the strongest available signal. If this does not work, a better indoor antenna or an outdoor antenna may help. In addition, make sure that outdoor antenna mounts are secure to minimize any movement caused by the wind. If you lose reception of a particular channel during severe weather conditions try tuning to other channels that remain available for weather advisory information or alerts. In cases where no TV stations can be received, you should tune to a local AM or FM station or any other available media for weather alerts.
The digital television (DTV) transition refers to the switch from analog to digital broadcast television. When the DTV transition was completed on June 12, 2009, all U.S. full-power TV stations stopped broadcasting in analog format, and now transmit only in digital. Consumers who subscribe to pay television services (for example: cable, satellite) continue to receive broadcast (“over the air”) television programs through these subscription services. Consumers who do not have subscription TV services and are not receiving digital signals have two choices:
1. They can purchase a digital TV (either a stand alone digital TV or separate digital tuner set-top box) or
2. They can acquire a digital-to-analog converter box for each of their analog TVs to continue receiving free over-the-air digital television programming. The converter box converts the over-the-air digital signals into signals that analog TV sets can receive and display.
(Microsoft Encarta 2009)
Digital Television Quality Levels There are three types of digital television (DTV) quality levels.
1. The High Definition Television (HDTV)
2. The Standard Definition Television (SDTV)
3. The Enhanced Definition Television (EDTV)
The High Definition Television (HDTV)
This was developed in the 1980s. It uses 1,080 lines and a wide – screen format, providing a significantly clearer picture than the traditional 525 – and 625 – line television screens. Each line in contains more information than normal formats. It is transmitted using digital technology and because it takes a huge amount of coded information to represent the visual image, engineers believe that the HDTV will need about 30 million bits (ones and zeros of digital code) each second – data compression techniques have been developed to reduce the number of bits that need to be transmitted.
HDTV in widescreen format (16:9) provides the highest resolution and picture quality of all digital broadcast formats. Combined with digitally enhanced sound technology, HDTV sets new standards for sound and picture quality in television. (Note: HDTV and digital TV are not the same thing — HDTV is one format of digital TV.)
The Standard Definition Television (SDTV)
SDTV is the basic level of quality display and resolution for both analog and digital. Transmission of SDTV may be in either the traditional (4:3) or widescreen (16:9) format.

The Enhanced Definition Television (EDTV)
Enhanced Definition TV (EDTV) – EDTV is a step up from Analog Television. EDTV comes in 480p widescreen (16:9) or traditional (4:3) format and provides better picture quality than SDTV, but not as high as HDTV.
With these techniques, digital systems need to continuously transmit codes only for a scene in which images are changing the systems can compress the recurring codes for images that remain the same into a single code.
Digital technology is being developed that will offer sharper pictures on wider screens, and HDTV with cinema quality images

Importance of Digital television
1. It frees up parts of the valuable broadcast spectrum for public safety communications (such as police, fire departments, and rescue squads). Also, some of the spectrum can now be auctioned to companies that will be able to provide consumers with more advanced wireless services (such as wireless broadband).
2. It allows stations to offer improved picture and sound quality, and digital is much more efficient than analog. For example, rather than being limited to providing one analog program, a broadcaster is able to offer a super sharp High Definition (HD) digital program or multiple Standard Definition (SD) digital programs simultaneously through a process called “multicasting.”
Multicasting allows broadcast stations to offer several channels of digital programming at the same time, using the same amount of spectrum required for one analog program. So, for example, while a station broadcasting in analog on channel 7 is only able to offer viewers one program, a station broadcasting in digital on channel 7 can offer viewers one digital program on channel 7-1, a second digital program on channel 7-2, a third digital program on channel 7-3, and so on. This means more programming choices for viewers. Further, DTV provides interactive video and data services that were not possible with analog technology.

Closed Captioning and the Digital-to-Analog Converter Box
Closed captioning displays the audio portion of a television program as text on the television screen, enabling people with hearing loss and others to better access television programming. The digital-to-analog converter box receives closed caption signals and passes those closed caption signals to your TV automatically. In addition, many converter boxes generate captions through the converter box itself, thus enabling you to change the way your captions look.
TV translator stations rebroadcast the programming of a full-power station, but on a different channel. Your television will indicate the channel on which you are receiving the programming. If the station you are watching with an antenna (and not through a paid provider such as cable or satellite) identifies itself with a different channel than the one indicated on your TV, you are likely receiving the programming from a TV translator station. If you are unsure of the status of a particular station, contact that station. Further, LPTV, Class A, and TV translator stations may regularly broadcast information as to their status, and may include information regarding the DTV transition.
However, if you have an analog-only television that receives free over-the-air programming (with a roof-top antenna or “rabbit ears” on the TV), you will need to purchase a digital-to-analog converter box in order to watch digital broadcast television. And If you purchase a digital-to-analog converter box to watch digital broadcasts on an analog TV and also wish to continue watching analog LPTV, Class A, or TV translator stations, you should purchase a converter box with “analog pass-through” capability, which allows analog broadcast signals to pass through the converter box to be tuned by your analog TV.
Statement of the problem
The shift from analog to digital transmission is a welcome idea but one tends to wonder if we have the facilities to maintain and or retain it and improve the quality of picture and sound recording.
Research questions
1. What will become of analog when digital takes the air?
2. How soon can digital television be stabilised in Nigeria?
3. Will digital transmission solve our blurred vision and distorted sound problems that we experience in Nigeria?

Definition of terms.
Television: Television is primarily a public broadcasting medium, using point-to-multipoint technology that is broadcast to any user within range of the transmitter. Televisions transmit news and information, as well as entertainment. Commercial television is broadcast over very high frequency (VHF) and ultrahigh frequency (UHF) radio waves and can be received by any television set within range of the transmitter
Analog: Telegraphs, telephones, radio, and television all work by modifying electronic signals, making the signals imitate, or reproduce, the original message. This form of transmission is known as analog transmission.
Digital: Digital technologies convert a message into an electronic or optical form first by measuring different qualities of the message, such as the pitch and volume of a voice, many times. These measurements are then encoded into multiple series of binary numbers, or 1s and 0s. Finally, digital technologies create and send impulses that correspond to the series of 1s and 0s.
Television: Television, system of sending and receiving pictures and sound by means of electronic signals transmitted through wires and optical fibres or by electromagnetic radiation.

Theoretical Framework.
The trust of this study is hinged on the Innovation – Diffusion theory.
The theory was propounded by Ryan and Gross in 1943 and latter developed by Everett Rogers in 1960.
According to Baran and Davis (2009: 271)
Rogers assembled data from numerous empirical studies to show that when new technological innovations are introduced, they pass through a series of stages before they are widely adopted. First most people become aware of them, often through information from mass media, second, the innovations will be adopted by a very small group of innovators, or early adopters. Third, opinion leaders learn from the early adopters and try the innovation themselves. Fourth, if opinion leaders find the innovation useful, they encourage their friends, the opinion followers. Finally, after most people have adopted the innovation, a group of laggards, or late adopters, make the change.
The theory is based on the assumptions that:
1. Diffusion research centres on the conditions which increase or decrease the likelihood that a new idea, product, or practice will be adopted by members of a given culture.
2. Diffusion of innovation theory predicts that media as well as interpersonal contacts provide information
and influence opinion and judgement.
3. Opinion leaders exert influence on audience behaviour via their personal contact, but additional intermediaries (called change agents and gatekeepers) are also included in the process of diffusion.
4. The information flows through networks, the nature of networks and the roles opinion leaders play in them determine that the innovation will be adopted.
Anaeto, Onabajo and Osifeso (2008:117) state that Rogers presents the innovation decision process as a mental process which an individual or other unit making decisions passes and the process consists of five stages:
1. Knowledge: exposure to an innovation and some understanding of how it functions.

2. Persuasion: formation of an attitude towards the innovation.

3. Decision: activity resulting in a choice to adopt or reject the innovation.

4. Implementation: putting the innovation to use, and

5. Confirmation: reinforcement or reversal of the innovation decision made.
Daramola (2003) opines that: the paradigm holds that the media have a crucial role to play in the process of diffusion of innovation because they create awareness among a large number of people at the same time.

Review of related literature.
According to Miller,
Recorded music, television programs and a wealth of other media have been sent and stored on both types of platforms. While analog and digital can transmit various media and electronic content, they are completely different formats. The benefits of each have been hotly debated, and although digital systems are the preferred choice in our modern technological age, analog is not yet a relic. Knowing the difference can help you make an informed choice when you are choosing between the two formats.
It is true that broadcasters have welcomed the birth of digital transmission in contemporary times, but Miller argues that it would be unwise to forget analog transmission completely. He added that:
Quite simply, analog records information in waveforms, while digital stores information in a binary code comprised of 1s and 0s. To use a concrete example, music on an analog vinyl LP is stored in continuous waves of data, uninterrupted and representing the peaks and valleys of sound. Digital mediums like CDs store music as a series of 1s and 0s, using binary code to break the sound into rapidly sampled chunks. The benefits of each format have been fiercely debated by audiophiles, television and electronic device enthusiasts and the layman.
Analog and digital are fundamentally different. Analog holds continuous data, while digital holds discrete data. Beyond these scientific facts lies the matter of aesthetic taste. Some prefer the warmth of film to the perceived chill of digital megapixels, and others deride the supposedly murky sound and image of analog formats. If you don’t have a preference, it is worth comparing the analog and digital formats because you might be missing out on a great media experience. (www.TheFirstGroup.com)
According to this group, digital transmission holds isolated or separate data which seems to be easy for assessment, process and gives a more aesthetical value.
As for The Kenyan assistant Minister for Information and Communication, Hon. Koigi wa Wamwere, In his paper ‘Establishing a Viable Broadcasting Policy for Africa: What are the Stakes and Options?’ he noted that Africa has no option than to digitise radio and TV broadcasting in line with the worlds change to digital technology or perish as a continent. He said that Africans were already starved of information about their own societies, countries, other African countries and the world.
’Our thirst for information is big and it must be quenched quickly’ He went on to say that for the people to have more information more radio and TV stations were required and because the spectrum was already crowded the only way to obtain the additional space required was through digitisation.
he contends that African has lacking behind in ignorance about information concerning Africa and sees digitisation as an opportunity for Africans to improve and meet up with modern technology and increase broadcast stations.
Kombol, A. M. (2008:1) agrees that: “the waves in digital broadcasting are encoded to ensure enhanced picture and sound quality. Due to the nature of the airwaves used to transmit in digital broadcasting, the picture and sound quality is greatly enhanced.”
I believe that the whole Essence of moving upward to digital transmission is to enhance picture and sound quality just as this scholar said.

Conclusion:
From the debate about digital television transmission is all easy technological breakthrough which records data in singles and this makes transmission easy. It discretely makes editing even much each easier especially for editors and line transmitters and transmitter engineers. Although analog television is at the verge of being faced out, it still has its own advantages which could still complement digitalisation.
The shift to digital television is expected to bring about improvement in sound and picture quality and give more room for television channels to transmit more than one programme simultaneously. Hence by the year 2015, Nigeria is looking forward to a complete digital television transmission.

Recommendations.
1. Since poor weather conditions are likely to cause adverse effects on digital transmission, weather friendly equipment should be used in order to overcome this problem.
2. Now that StarTimes is operating digital television in conjunction with NTA in a few cities of Nigeria, it should expand its tentacles to cover all the major cities of the country.

Refences:

Anaeto, S. G.; Onabajo, O. S.; and Osifeso, J. B. (2008). Models
and Theories of Communication. United States of America: African Renaissance Books Incorporated.

Asemah, E. S. (2009). Principles and Practice of Mass
Communication. Jos: Great Future.

Baran, S. J and Davis, D. K. (2009) Mass Communication Theory.
United States of America: WADSWORTH Cengage Learning.

Daramola, I. (2003) Introduction to Mass Communication.Lagos:
Rothan Press Ltd.

Kombol, A. M. (2008). Nigerian Mass Media in this Digital Age.
Makurdi: AsaGod Printers.

BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY MAKURDI
DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATION

TOPIC:
DIGITAL TELEVISION PRODUCTION EQUIPMENT (DTPE)
‘AN ASSESMENT’

PRESENTED
BY
NYIYONGU CHARLES NGUSHA
BSU/SS/MSC/09/4622

COURSE CODE: COM 702

LECTURER:
DR. MICHAEL.K (PhD)

NOVEMBER, 2010.
ABSTRACT
This write-up discussed the digital television production equipments. It also talked about the advantages that are seen in using the digital television to include; time saving, cost reduction as in been cheap and accessible. It answers the quest ions that has been raised by the researcher, questions like: Does the digital television serve batter than the analogue which has been in use for years before the advent of modern technology? And Is it faster than the former (analogue)? The paper finally concludes that the Revolution in information and communication technologies has brought astonishing changes in the world and has impacted significantly on almost every thing. It has replaced the old analogue technologies with digital technologies that are much batter, faster, cheaper, and more convenient and they deliver superior service to customers and clients. Many organizations, government ant individuals have embraced the ICT revolution to re- engineer their operations and services in line with globalization and international standards; and are benefiting from its numerous advantages.

INTRODUCTION:
Towards the 20th century came the explosion of computer. This has made almost every activities of man computerized.

It is the manufacturing sector, administration/management or nowadays where the emphases is most prominent – the electronic world? Today and into the century the year 2000, it is surely the “century of digitalization” it most however, be stressed that the digital devices are very transparent in video broadcast productions, most especially that information technology is the “in-thing” the world over.

The invention of digital technology has made television broadcasting unending and fast dynamic production capabilities. In digital system, the analogue waveforms are first of all converted into digital signal.

And in digital system, the equipment only works with the numerical code but not with the real electronic signal. Hence, in the final result of its operation, there is hardly any degeneration of picture qualities no matter for how long the digital system is manipulated. The resultant effects of these advantages of digital system is that the quality of pictures are just superb vis- a- vis other special effects generated (SEG).

STATEMENT OF PROBLEMS:
It is pertinent to disclose that digital technology has brought about qualitative signal processing, reception and reach which were never though of some years back.

For instance, the conventional 4:3 to 16:9 and vice – versa. This aspect of ratio converter ads another innovative dimension inform of varieties in video/television viewing.

The question at stake is “how has the digital television equipments” been able to transmit with clear signals? And does it actually ease the work of anonymous audience. These are the areas this paper seeks to touch.

RESEARCH QUESTION:
The paper seeks to answer to answer the following questions:
Does the digital television serve batter than the analogue which has been in use for years before the advent of modern technology?

Is it faster than the former (analogue)?

DEFINITION OF TERMS:
Digital television is the system of broadcasting television using digital signals which is master of the air waves (Nyiyongu Charles Ngusha. 2010)

Equipment here refers to things that are needed for a particular activity or purpose. So for this purpose, video production has actually exposed the creative abilities of man.

A number of digital broadcast equipment such as cameras, switchers of various sorts, editing console/suites, video cassette recorders, vision mixers, to mention a few; al have the letter “D” which signifies digital before their names, for example, digital video camera, digital vision mixer and so on.

THEORETICAL FRAME WORK:
The theory to be applied here is “Communication technology theory” This theory tarries with technological inventions which greatly affect the society. Here, scholars state that various media encourage and create in their audience, patterns of behavior and views about the world.

It is the ideas conveyed across by the media that charge people’s perceptions of the world .e.g. literacy, lifestyles, culture etc. the medium theories are not interested in the content of the message but are concerned with how the medium affect the audience in an addictive manner.

The theory is applied here because it deals with the technological development and inventions. it is quite clear that if these media messages that are been sent to anonymous audience gets to their ear without clear signals, it will be of no significance, so with the advent of digital technology like the digital television which is an effort of communication technology there is clear vision.

The theory emphasize that hence the media messages attracts large number of person they should come in a more clear form. And that is the more reason we have digital television transmission.

REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE:
To show how the digital television has eased the work in broadcasting, (Campbell Andy; 1998) said that ‘digital video cameras are becoming the basic in television broadcasting.

To cap it all, the use of video cassette may soon be taken over by compact disc – Rom (CD-Rom) digital versatile disc (DVD) and digital news gathering (DNG) with retro loop. For instance, “ikegami” an electronic manufacturer, has to its credit, a DNG camera with retro loop device.

This camera which serves both time and money allows you to record whatever you want but keeps only the essentials.
This is done by the retro loop function for the number of minutes one wants. It continues to record on this set minutes or period and record endlessly until one wants to retain the final material.

Digital ratio converter:
Digital technology has brought about qualitative signal processing, reception and reaches which were never though of some years back.

For instance, the conventional 4:3 aspect ratio in TV now has a converter which can turn television screen from 4:3to 16:9 and 14:9 and vice – versa.

This aspect of ratio converter ads another innovative dimension inform of varieties in video/television viewing.

Digital Video broadcast (DVB)
Video production has actually exposed the creative abilities of man.

A number of digital broadcast equipment such as cameras, switchers of various sorts, editing console/suites, video cassette recorders, vision mixers, to mention a few; al have the letter “D” which signifies digital before their names, for example, digital video camera, digital vision mixer etc.

The digital versatile disc other wise known as digital video disc (DVD) plays on CDs. One has the advantage if one’s PC has DVD read only memory (ROM). This is expected to replace video home service (VHS).

Other cameras such as BetaCam-sx, camcorders by SONY and many thousand models of cameras on sale.

The new inventions of video cameras have added to the technological breakthrough inn the field of television broadcasting.

Digital video effect (DVE):
(Wurtzal, 1985) assert that:
“The invention of digital technology has made television broadcasting unending and fast dynamic production capabilities. In digital system, the analogue waveforms are first of all converted into digital signal.

And in digital system, the equipment only works with the numerical code but not with the real electronic signal. Hence, in the final result of its operation, there is hardly any degeneration of picture qualities no matter for how long the digital system is manipulated.

The resultant effects of these advantages of digital system is that the quality of pictures are just superb vis- a- vis other special effects generated.

Types of digital video effects (DVE)
There are various types of DVE here are some of them:
1. Continuous picture expansion (CPE): this appears as if the picture is electronically zooming in. here the picture is enlarged as wanted by then director. This at the same time exposes the full definition of the object.

2. Continuous picture compression (CPC): this is the opposite of the above. Here, the picture can be compressed or shrieked until it disappears finally. In effect, it is the zooming of out device that is sort of put into use.

3. Picture stretching effects (PSE): here the horizontal and vertical dimension of an object or a picture is either expanded or compressed. The picture in essence can change form or shape.

4. Picture rotation effects (PRE): the DVE allows the director to rotate pictures on the screen. Such rotations as tumbling and spinning top or even create a three- dimensional picture effect.

It is worthy of note, that the developmental advancement of information technology in the world over has given rise to digital broadcast production techniques.

It is relevant therefore to note that there is editing video cassettes, so also is the one of compact disc. Both have the same system or process of editing except that one is cassette while the other is compact disc.

Virtual video production:
The development of virtual pictures or image formation is really gaining ground in advertising. This is to create a kind of subliminal advert effects on the viewers.

This was used prominently during the world cup “France 98” coca- cola’s logo was virtually displayed or inserted into the center of the field before the start of every match. Unless the players looked at the big screen by the pitch side they could not seethe virtual ad-display on the pitch with their physical eyes. But the viewers at home saw it all.

Azar (1998) gave some considerations to follow in creating virtual pictures effects especially during sports telecasts.
1. Ability to work with unlimited number of cameras as most sports events are covered by multiple cameras.

2. capability for smooth cut between different cameras

3. The ability to over come the huge amount of image blur from working with fast camera motion with a full degree of freedom (pan and tilt).

4. The ability to deal with modern camera work that is used in the coverage of sporting events. Most sporting events are covered by z55 to x70 EFP Zoom lenses resulting in excessive zooming out of the field of view.

5. Overcome excessive occlusion of the target bill boards by players found in such sports as basket ball or hockey.

6. The virtual bill boards must be able to enter or exit the camera field of view by any combination of pan, tilt and zoom.

7. Ability to simultaneously replace and insert the signage.

8. Functional within all types of weather and lighting conditions.

9. Functional in outdoor and indoor environment.

10. Functional within any sport and environment.

Non- linear editing:
It is worthy to note, that in operation, the analogue video signal from the camera could be transmitted to the system for digitalizing and processed I a specifically designed video effect.

This is usually with the assistant of a computer. This is because the computer accurately locates the target bill boards in the field or view and texture map the desired graphics for replacement on the video frame.

Likewise, many computer programmes such as Adobe after Effects, Electric image and 3d studio have enabled video artist to composite moving text and graphics over moving video images.

Almost every advert, cooperate and programme promos, to mention a few, incorporates moving graphics (flying) and text into the overall presentation, examples are the various corporate promos o air.

The “IVAN” (inscriber video animator) is a tool used for moving pictorial effects or flying text. The IVAN makes it easy for the artists to make titles and graphics with the inscriber character generator products and fly them about the screen (Vanderkam 1998)

Thus, the flying text effect combines the spinning of the words and graphics rather than working with the actual graphics. These effects are complemented with the tumbling, twisting and moving about in a variety of direction for the products to really give artist the flexibility needed to bring their ideas to life (Vanderkam)

The time of rendering always makes artist frustrated especially if the animation packages are multi complex ones. Rendering poses problems to the graphics layering packages which video producers tend to put into use the entire computer network in the studio in order to render the various animations.

It is a rather very long hours of labour to produce the final animation. From observation, this kind of process is not only expensive but time consuming. In fact the computer hard ware which is the most vital plays a crucial role which from observation too tends to kill creativity.

This is because, artist are always reluctant to try alternate motion effects due to the time involved in re- rendering. However, if the inscriber solution to is made simple and straight forward, a lot of grounds would have been gained in terms of animation learning

The inscriber tool has been observed to make simple and fast animated graphics. Likewise, with very large, ultra fast hard disks, Pentium processors and in expensive RAM, it will be possible to easily handle some of the processing of making animate graphics in non linear ending process.

Recommendation:
In view of the above mentioned points, the paper recommend that the entire media establishment should adapt to digital broadcast and forget the analogue that has been in use for several years, because of the merits that are seen in the digitalization process. Hence it is the information super high- way, and is cheaper and faster.

In conclusion therefore, we may end up in saying that the Revolution in information and communication technologies has brought astonishing changes in the world and has impacted significantly on almost every thing.

It has replaced the old analogue technologies with digital technologies that are much batter, faster, cheaper, and more convenient and they deliver superior service to customers and clients.

Many organizations, government ant individuals have embraced the ICT revolution to re- engineer their operations and services in line with globalization and international standards; and are benefiting from its numerous advantages.

Reference:
Ayo Oderoyinbo (2005) Basic Broadcasting Production techniques Published
and Printed by NICOLAK Ventures Nigeria.

Baird, R, Rossel et al (1993) Graphics of Communication: methods, modern and tech
8th Ed London. Harcourt Brace publishers.

Duko Segun (1985) Techniques of Television Production American Printing
Monograph series two: published by African council on communication
Education (ACCA Nairoh Kluya)

Nkwocha, J. (2005) Effective Media Relations: issues, strategies and dynamics 2nd Ed
Lagos: zoom line publishers.

Vanderkam, Mark (1998) Motion Effects on a tight budget. IBE JULY 1998.

Wutzel Alan (1985), Television Production. Published by McGraw-hill, inc. Singapore.

DIGITAL TELEVISION TRANSITION IN NIGERIA AND ITS IMPLICATION ONTHE NIGERIAN SOCIETY

A SEMINAR PRESENTED

BY: IDOKO, EVELYN OHUMA
BSU/SS/M.Sc/09/4602

TO THE DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATON, BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI.

IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE COURSE BROADCAST SEMINAR, COM 702.

LECTURER: DR. MIKE KOMBOL.

NOVEMBER 2010.

Background of the Study
Digital broadcasting is a new technology where audio, video and data are transmitted over airwaves like a computer. The waves in digital broadcasting are encoded to ensure enhanced picture and sound quality. Following this, the International Telecommunications Union after its congress in Geneva, Switzerland in 2006 set June 17, 2015 as deadline for the entire world as switch-over date from the current mode of broadcasting to the ultramodern digital terrestrial broadcasting. However, before we go further on this discourse, let us take a brief look at the History of Television.
The advent of television radically affected radio, forcing it from its primary position in mass communication to a secondary role. This invention was a lengthy, collaborative process. An early milestone was the successful transmission of an image in 1884 by German inventor Paul Nipkow. His mechanical system, known as the rotating or Nipkow disk, was further developed by Charles Francis Jenkins, who made a telecast of a short film to U.S. government officials in Washington, D.C., in 1925, and by Scottish scientist John Logie Baird, who broadcast a televised image in 1926 to an audience at the Royal Academy of Science in London. In 1928 Herbert Ives, an engineer working for AT&T, offered what was perhaps the most spectacular demonstration of mechanical television to that point, transmitting color images of a bouquet of roses and an American flag to two audiences simultaneously in New York City and Washington, D.C.
During the 1930s several companies around the world actively prepared to introduce television to the public. As early as 1935, the BBC initiated experimental television broadcasts in London for several hours each day. That same year, CBS hired American theater, film, and radio critic Gilbert Seldes as a consultant on its television-programming development project. RCA unveiled television to the American public in grand style at the 1939 New York World’s Fair, with live coverage of the fair’s opening ceremonies. This included a speech by President Roosevelt—the first televised appearance of an American president. Daily telecasts were made from the RCA pavilion at the fair. Visitors were invited to experience television viewing and were given the opportunity to walk in front of television cameras and see themselves on monitors.
Between 1935 and 1941, electronic (experimental) television began broadcasting in Germany, England, Italy, France, USA, Holland, and many other European countries. With the victory television has thus far, the desire to improve television production led to experiments on the colored television in the early 1940s. The first mechanical colored television was placed in the market on June 25, 1953. But this did not last because the mechanical television soon faded out in October the same year. Experiments were intensified and in May 1954, the first all-electronic color television set was soled that is the RCA CT-100.
In 1987 Japanese demonstrated research and experiments in 1987 ANALOG high-definition TV system (called MUSE) and in 1990 General Instrument’s Video Cipher division announced the DIGITAL Hi-Definition System. This served as a forerunner to the internet World Wide Web of the 1990’s which ushered in new global communication systems for the 21st century.
In Nigeria, Television broadcasting started with the initiative of the Western Region Premier, Chief Obafemi Awolowo who on October 31, 1959 launched television broadcasting at Ibadan the headquarters of the region. The western Region Government went into partnership with the overseas Redifusion limited. The western Nigeria Radiovision Service Limited was created with the responsibility of radio and television broadcasting under one management. A small transmitter of 500 watts power was mounted on Mapo Hill in Ibadan and another at Abafon near Ikorodu. The television was therefore established to disseminate information and entertain viewers. The radio and TV stations in the Western Region pioneered commercial broadcasting in Nigeria to supplement government subvention. In 1962, the Western region government took full control of the WNBS/WNTV by buying over all the shares held by the Overseas Rediffusion Ltd. In the same year, the Nigeria television Service was born in Lagos with the radio corporation of America (RCA) and the national broadcasting company international limited managing the station. But the management was eventually handed over to Reverend Victor Badejo, who was then the acting Director General of the NBC. The NTS later changed its name to NBC/TV. The Federal Military Government of Nigeria under General Olusegun Obasanjo (as he then was) took over the television stations in Nigeria in 1978 and changed its name to Nigeria television authority (NTA). The journey of television broadcasting since then has grown from one level to another.
Digital television technology emerged to public view in the 1990s. In the United States, professional action was spurred by a demonstration in 1987 of a new analog high-definition television (HDTV) system by NHK, Japan’s public television network. This incited the Federal Communication Commission to declare an open competition to create American HDTV, and in June 1990 the General Instrument Corporation (GI) surprised the industry by announcing the world’s first all-digital television system.
However, the age of digital television kicked off on November 1, 1998, as about 40 TV stations around the United States aired the first digital broadcasts. Few people were able to experience the new technology, however, as high equipment costs and other drawbacks have deterred most consumers from purchasing the type of TV sets needed to receive the broadcasts.
In November 2007, the National Broadcasting Commission briefed the 38th National Council on Information and Communications in Jos on the imperatives of Digitization and urgent need for the nation to take advantage of this inevitable global phenomenon. In December 2007, His Excellency President Umaru Musa ‘Yar-adua graciously approved that the Commission should set in motion and pilot, Nigeria’s digitization programme towards the target date of June 17, 2012.
Digitization programme commenced in Abuja on June 3, 2008, following a meeting of stakeholders in the broadcast industry where forum underscored the need for Nigeria to embrace the new technology, so that the country not be turned into a dumping ground for obsolete analogue equipment. All broadcast stations in Nigeria, whether radio or television, privately own or public will be on the match, to move indisputably from analog broadcasting to digital. This movement from analog to broadcasting is based on the overwhelming benefits of digital broadcasting over the analog. However, this has also posed a lot of challenges to the Nigerian Government and more especially the broadcast stations.
Statement of the Problem
The analog television transmitters that were once useful for beaming pictures to television sets are gradually being replaced with the High Definition Television and the Nigerian broadcast industry has been given the target of June 2012 as switch-over date, thus, what are the benefits of digital broadcasting as well as the challenges that this transition is posing to the Nigerian society?

Research Questions
The following questions were raised to give this paper a focus. They include;
1. What are the benefits of the digital television transition?
2. What are the impending challenges of the transition from analog broadcasting to digital broadcasting in the Nigerian society?

Theoretical Framework
This paper is anchored on the Diffusion and Technological Determinism Theory. This theory was propounded in 1986 by Everret Rogers. The diffusion side of the theory talks about the using of communication to transfer technological innovation from development agencies to their clients so as to create an appetite for change through raising a climate for modernization among members of the public.
Aneato et al (2008) explains that, there are critical roles for technology in the employment of mass communication for development. The technology in mass communication serves a dual role in diffusion. They are channels for messages, as well as messages of innovation. Another technological deterministic approach sees technology as a value-free and politically neutral asset that can be used in every social and historical context. The basic assumptions of the theory as related to this paper are
1. An overly optimistic view shares the conviction that the development and application of technology can resolve all varied problems of mankind.
2. That technology is the proponent factor in development.
3. That technology is an inexorable, irresistible, and overwhelming force, which is a message in its own right.
This theory states that technology can transform any environment, and in a communication sense, media technology can be both a channel and a message at time. Since technological innovations can imbibe development through the diffusion of the messages it carries, then one can say that digital broadcasting will no doubt break the barriers associated with analog broadcasting.
The second theory is Max Weber’s Modernization Theory. The theory holds that modernity process through the institutionalization of rationality results in social specialization, and bureaucratization. The modernization theory treats progress as a process that would take place naturalistically. Daniel Lerner in Jacobson (2004) notes that, for economic and social institutions to change, change was required in individual knowledge, attitudes and aspiration. This means that change is very necessary for development as well as modernization. Modernization in this light is that television broadcasting has been a process and the process is still on, however, there has been a lot of progress in Nigeria and other parts of the world.

Review of Related Literature
What is Digital Television
Digital television is a technology that offers viewers sharper pictures and enhanced sound quality compared to existing analog television by transmitting large quantities of data in compact form, just like in personal computers, compact disc and the internet. Kombol (2008:1)
Digital television uses technology that records, transmits, and decodes a signal in digital form—that is, as a series of ones and zeros. This process produces much clearer picture and sound quality than analog systems, similar to the difference between a compact disc recording (using digital technology) and an audiotape or long-playing record. It also permits additional features to be embedded in signals including program and consumer information as well as interactivities. Early digital equipment included digital television receivers that converted analog signals into digital code. The analog signal was first sampled and stored as a digital code, then processed, and finally retrieved. ATSC digital tuners designed to decode purely digital signals are now standard on new televisions. (Encarta 2009).
Kombol (2008) quoting The Bureau of Information and Telecommunication in the United States (2003:3) writes that,
Digital television (or DTV) broadcasts, are transmitted using a digital signal (a series of 1s and 0s in a particular order) rather than an analog signal. Your digital TV receiver processes the picture and sound information of the broadcast in much the same way that a computer processes data. The TV reads the patterns of 1s and 0s and converts them into whatever images or sound those particular patterns represent…

In digital television broadcasting, the video and audio signals are digitally compressed as sets of numbers. These numbers are carried by the broadcast signal but must be decoded by a digital receiver to be translated back into video and audio signals. Digital information takes up less bandwidth than an analog signal and greatly reduces interference and other problems. Picture and sound quality can be much clearer and more detailed than with analog signals. Multiple digital signals can be sent at the same time. (Encarta, 2009).

What is Digital Television Transition
The digital television (DTV) transition refers to the switch from analog to digital broadcast television when the DTV transition was completed on June 12, 2009, all U.S. full power TV stations stopped broadcasting in analog format, and now transmit only in digital.
A fully digital system was demonstrated in the United States in the 1990s. A common world standard for digital television, the MPEG-2, was agreed on in April 1993 at a meeting of engineers representing manufacturers and broadcasters from 18 countries. Because HDTV receivers initially cost much more than regular television sets, and broadcasts of HDTV and regular television are incompatible, the transition from one format to the next could take many years. The method endorsed by the U.S. Congress and the FCC to ease this transition is to give existing television networks a second band of frequencies on which to broadcast, allowing networks to broadcast in both formats at the same time. Engineers are also working on making HDTV compatible with computers and telecommunications equipment so that HDTV technology may be applied to other systems besides home television, such as medical devices, security systems, and computer-aided manufacturing (CAM).
The Congress of the United States has mandated that all over-the-air television broadcasting become digital, although the date for the end of all analog broadcasting has been changed a number of times. Finally the conversion date was set as February 2009, and viewers with analog televisions were told they will need special converter boxes to watch over-the-air broadcasts.(Encarta 2009).

Transition from Analog to Digital Broadcasting in Nigeria
The National Broadcasting Commission recognizes Digitization, the conversation of the broadcast and communication system from analog to digital, as an important global movement driven by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) that will revolutionize broadcasting as we know “it” digitalization both improves the quality of reception and ensures a more efficient use of the spectrum, which is a scarce and finite natural resource belonging to all Nigerians and held in trust by licenses. (Ogah, 2009).
Sennitt (2008) notes that, the transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting will affect all segments in the reception in the broadcasting value chain namely; content production, transmission and reception as all will require technical upgrading to support digital broadcast.
In November 2007, the NBC briefed the 38th National Council on Information and Communication in Jos on the essence of Digitization and urgent need for the nation to take advantage of this inevitable global phenomenon. Thus in December 2007, the late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua approved that the commission should set in motion and pilot Nigeria’s digitization programme towards the target date of June 17, 2012.
To beat the 2012 target, a number of things have been done some of which include, the inauguration of a stake holders committee to look closely into this move and how it will be relevant to the Nigerian society. To further set measures in motion for the realization of the project, the Federal Government has set up a Presidential Advisory Committee on Transition (PAC), from Analog to Digital Broadcasting in Nigeria. PAC, which was inaugurated on 13th October, 2008 by the then, Hon Minister of Information and Communications, Mr John Ogar Odey has the following Terms of Reference.

1. Recommend a policy on digital terrestrial broadcast transition using global best
practices.
2. Recommend appropriate regulatory framework.
3. Recommend a National Broadcasting Model.
4. Assess impact of digitization on the consumers and recommend possible government
intervention.
5. Determine the quantum of expected digital dividend.
6. Assess environmental impact of digitization, if any, and recommend steps to be taken.
7. Advice Government on any action relevant to smooth transition in Nigeria.
Also the NBC has encouraged cable (MMDS) and DTH operators to digitize their operations, and the broadcast regulator has steered the sector towards the preliminary stages of digitization, all non-terrestrial broadcasters have already gone digital, and that virtually all the production and studio equipment of the broadcast stations in this country are all in the digital format. The final stage, which is the transmission phase, and the most crucial aspect of the transition, this directly reconfigures the operational format of the industry and affects the public. Indeed, at this juncture, let me commend the efforts of the management of the Nigerian Television Authority, NTA which has recently launched its digital terrestrial multi-channel station, a positive step in the digitization of programme.
In recognition of the fact that Digitization in the broadcast sector is best driven by policy, Government is preparing to present a bill to the National Assembly for a law that will provide the legal framework for the transition. It will deal with the basic issues of the signal distribution system, the licensing framework, spectrum planning, broadcast standards, training, Set Top boxes and such other relevant issues that will make the transition smooth and meaningful. The Nigerian government is aware of the crucial need to successfully transit to digital broadcasting, thus they have promised to leave no stone unturned to achieve this within the deadline.

Importance of Digital Television Transition
Michael Antonff in Encarta (2009) notes that since television first won a massively popular following in the late 1940s and 1950s, the industry has often boasted about “the next big thing” that will revolutionize the medium. The age of analog, a means of recording and transmission based on continuously variable waveforms, is rapidly disappearing. This coming digitization will eventually change the way our household appliances operate, especially appliances that offer information and entertainment.
Thus, the importance of digital television can not be over emphasized, that is why by June, 2009, the United States federal law required that all full-power television broadcast stations stop broadcasting in analog format and broadcast only in digital format. Congress mandated the conversion to all-digital television broadcasting, also known as the digital television (DTV) transition, because all-digital broadcasting will free up frequencies for public safety communications (such as police, fire, and emergency rescue). Also, digital is a more efficient transmission technology that allows broadcast stations to offer improved picture and sound quality, as well as offer more programming options for consumers through multiple broadcast streams (multicasting). In addition, some of the freed up frequencies will be used for advanced commercial wireless services for consumers.
Kombol (2008) citing the Bureau of Information and Telecommunication in the United States (2003:3) states that,
…the digital signal is subject to less outside interference, so you get clearer, crisper images and sound. The digital signal can be compressed to carry far more information using the same amount of broadcast bandwidth as an existing analog signal.

Digital television (also known as high-definition television, HDTV) allows stations to broadcast high-resolution pictures and digital-quality sound, or alternatively to transmit as many as six different programmes in the same amount of broadcast spectrum currently used by one analog broadcast. Sports events, features films, and hit prime-time shows are some of the digital broadcasts that can run at the time.
In supporting this point, Adeniyi (2009) asserts that, the digital switch-over will increase the TV channels available to the population while a minimum of four programmes and four channels can be transmitted simultaneously from a station using the same bandwidth. Originally used for a single programme or channel in analog transmission.
The television of the near future will resemble a movie screen more closely than a TV set. The picture will be sharper and wider. The big cathode-ray tube (CRT) of present-day TVs will likely be gone, replaced by a thin panel that hangs on the wall like a painting. The sound will be like what you hear in a cinema with digital surround sound.
The TV may soon become more than just an appliance on which to watch a game or a show. Instead, it may serve as the display for a variety of entertainment and information devices. It is likely that the TV screen of the future will also integrate a telephone, a personal computer with World Wide Web access, and perhaps a video game system.
There is great potential for more futuristic television features, too. If a viewer needs to go to the kitchen but does not want to miss the big football play, a wristwatch display will take over. Electronic devices were meant to send as well as receive signals, so a consumer should be able to relay broadcast signals from the TV set to another device. And, with digital broadcasting, data can be compressed to adjust to the demands of the display device. A two-inch liquid crystal display (LCD) screen on a person’s arm could use just the data it needs to deliver that touchdown pass play.
Consumers probably will not have to wait decades for these scenarios to play out in their homes. Much of the technology is already starting to ship or is in prototype form. Although initially these new products will be quite expensive, they may quickly become more common and affordable as demand builds, in the fashion of compact disc players and VCRs.
Still highlighting the importance of the switch-over, Adeniyi (2009) notes that, organizations, businesses, institutions and social groups of all kind will have the opportunity to communicate their values or commercial offer to a wide variety of specific interest group. In the same vein, there will be a wide range distribution of information and content can turn broadcast media into an almost universal access platform.
Problems of Digital Television Transition
The benefits of the digital broadcasting abound, however, the Nigerian society will face some challenges rising from low level of technological advancement and the income level of the people. Kombol (2008) notes that, as much as digital broadcasting sounds plausible, many developing countries will continue using analog broadcasting for a long time.
Thus the Nigerian society is bound to encounter some of the following challenges as journey into digital broadcasting, they include

Lack of Trained Personnel
The digital television transition is faced with the challenge of professionals. In Nigeria, for instance, manpower is trained to only handle analog broadcast equipments, it will then be very difficult to send lay them off or train them again to handle digital broadcasting. Kombol (2008) asserts that, broadcast technology will render technical crew redundant especially those who are skilled in analog broadcasting.

Poverty
One of the implications of the analog broadcasting is that because of the huge volumes and stable manufacturing, television prices were as low as they could be. We could easily afford to have a TV not in only in the living room but also one in the bedroom, the kitchen, etc. The HDTV volumes are low and there are competing technologies fragmenting the numbers between these technologies. The result is prices are still high. Until volumes are pushed up over time, the prices are not likely to reach the level where we could afford multiple televisions in one home. It is likely to be half a decade or so before we see a similar situation for HDTV. Until then, one HDTV in the living room is the likely situation for the average household.
This means that, it takes a lot of money to move to digital broadcasting. In the developing nations such as Nigeria, it is difficult to buy the analog television sets not to talk of the digital televisions. Kombol (2008) notes that, the digital transition is indeed very expensive, he further stated that poverty among citizens of the developing countries ensures that they are unable to afford television sets that efficiently receive digital broadcast signals.

Long-Range Problems
Tuning to distant TV stations will be more difficult. Digital TV signals drop out completely below a certain level, whereas analog TV signals degrade gradually, allowing a watchable (if sometimes grainy) picture at greater distances from the transmitter. Also with current way of picking digital signals, using antenna, viewers are limited to whatever channels the antenna picks up and the signal quality will also vary.

Ignorance
Another general disadvantage of HDTV is largely transitional. The technology is there, but it is not very widespread yet. It is not as widespread as it was with the analog TV technology we were used to and has been around for decades.
The developing nations particularly lack proper awareness about digital broadcasting. In the same vein, the government of these countries have other pressing issues to address, thus digital broadcasting is the least of it priorities.
In Nigeria for instance where every Tom, Dick and Harry can go into journalism, the situation is worse because even the media professionals themselves lack the awareness. Kombol(2008) notes that, these professionals are content with the analog broadcasting because they are ignorant of the benefits of digital broadcasting.

Corruption
In Nigerian society in particular, the government is not so concerned about how to improve the society. Thus spending money on vital projects such as communication is ignored. Instead, public office holders are constantly looking for ways to divert public funds into private pockets.

Related Empirical Studies
A related empirical research titled: Migrating Implications of Digital Broadcasting and its challenges for Nigeria by Adeniyi (2009), where he sought to know the implications of the digital transition to the Nigerian society, he found out that, previously everyone relied on radio spectrum for TV transmission but this had inherent restriction posed by the analog transmission. Adjacent analog transmission were found to be subject to interference, forcing the regulatory bodies to level space between channel and only allocate a small percentage of available spectrums for transmission, to ensure high quality transmission and reception throughout the regions served. All these disadvantages have been surpassed with the arrival of digitization which gives better clarity and quality of signal and spectrum efficiency. Thus Nigerians that do not want to left behind in the new technological development have two options. The fist is for them to buy a digital compliant television set to enable them enjoy the benefits of the new technology, or even with the analog television, one can “set-top-box” which is a digital analog signal converter.
He also established that some of the challenges rise from finances to purchase the digital equipments before 2012 and the analog switch will render a non-digital television obsolete.
Conclusion and Recommendation
Digital television is an advanced broadcasting technology that can transform television viewing experience. It will enable broadcasters to offer television with better picture and sound quality, it also offers multiple preprogramming choices, called multicasting, and interactive capabilities. Digital Television is a great technological advancement that allows its viewers to watch a clearer picture while concurrently giving an added incentive to view even more channels than standard television. Moreover, it also eliminates the need for those old fashioned antennas that can cause static and obstruction in viewable television. Nonetheless, with the advancement of digital television also comes with it challenges.
Gradually, the Nigerian society is embracing this technology and machineries are put in place towards the switch-over deadline of 2012 but a lot still needs to be done because the pace is quiet slow. To this effect the following recommendations are made:
1. The Nigerian broadcast industry should form pressure groups that will convince the government of the need to shift from analog to digital broadcasting.
2. The members of Nigerian society should be given more awareness in order to prepare them for the transition.
3. The Nigerian government should hasten up in her policy towards the realization of the deadline of June 2012.
4. The Nigeria Broadcasting Commission should provide an enabling environment to achieve this goal come 2012.
5. The government should ensure that quite a lot of journalists especially those in the broadcast industry get properly trained in the art of broadcasting and in preparation for digital broadcasting.

References
Abbas Jimoh, (2008). Nigeria: Digitization Transition from Analog Pains to Digital
Gains. A publication of Daily Trust 10th August, 2008. http://www.allafrica.com. 21st
November, 2010.
Adeniyi, O.(2009), Digital Broadcasting Migrating Implications and Challenges
for Nigeria”. Retrieved from: http:/www.Technologytime.com./post/digital –
broadcasting.
Anaeto S. Onobajo O. and Osifeso J. (2008), Models and Theories of Mass
Communication. Lagos: African Renaissance Books Incorporated.
Forid G. (2000) in http://www.allsands.com. 17th May, 2010.
Kombol, M. (2008). Digital Considerations in Television Production.Makurdi: Switches and Pluggz.
Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2009. © 1993-2008 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
Tranner, G. (1998). Digital Broadcasting- The Wedge Widens. A paper presented at the Communication Research Forum, Australia, September, 1998.

Opening speech by the guest of honour, his Excellency, President Goodluck E. Jonathan, GCFR, at the opening ceremony of Africast 2010, held at the Abuja Sheraton hotel, on Tuesday, October 19, 2010.

BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY MAKURDI.

DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATION

COURSE:
COM 702 BROADCAST JOURNALISM
SEMINAR

TOPIC:
DIGITAL TELEVISION TRANSITION IN NIGERIA: IMPACT AND CHALLENGES

BY:
ATER TERHEMEN MARK
BSU/SS/MSC/09/4596

LECTURER:
DOCTOR KOMBOL MICHAEL

NOVEMBER, 2010

ABSTRACT
This research examined the digitalization of television and its challenges to Nigerian Television Stations. The paper looked at digital Television transition as an advanced broadcasting technology that has transformed your television viewing experience to enable broadcasters to offer television with better picture and sound quality. The diffusion and technological determinism theory was adopted for this work stressed that development and application of technology can resolve all human physical problems with the diffusion of communication. The research looked at conversion model as from analog to digital television transmission in Nigeria. It concluded that, to make this switch-over journey smoothly to all segments of the society, Nigerian government may consider borrowing a leaf from the united states where congress set aside one point five billion pounds for a massive coupon programme to help analog- dependent viewers buy converter boxes to equip their televisions to receive digital signals.

INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background of the Study:
Digital Television (DTV) is an advanced broadcasting technology that has transformed your television viewing experience. DTV has enable broadcasters to offer television with better picture and sound quality. It also offers multiple programming choices, called multicasting, and interactive capabilities.
The switch from analog to digital broadcast television is referred to as the Digital TV (DTV) Transition. In 1996, the U.S. Congress authorized the distribution of an additional broadcast channel to each broadcast TV station so that they could start a digital broadcast channel while simultaneously continuing their analog broadcast channel.
Later, Congress set June 12, 2009 as the deadline for full power television stations to stop broadcasting analog signals. Since June 13, 2009, all full-power U.S. television stations have broadcast over-the-air signals in digital only.
An important benefit of the switch to all-digital broadcasting is that it freed up parts of the valuable broadcast spectrum for public safety communications (such as police, fire departments, and rescue squads). Also, some of the spectrum can now be auctioned to companies that will be able to provide consumers with more advanced wireless services (such as wireless broadband).
Consumers also benefited because digital broadcasting allows stations to offer improved picture and sound quality, and digital is much more efficient than analog. For example, rather than being limited to providing one analog program, a broadcaster is able to offer a super sharp High Definition (HD) digital program or multiple Standard Definition (SD) digital programs simultaneously through a process called “multicasting.”

Multicasting allows broadcast stations to offer several channels of digital programming at the same time, using the same amount of spectrum required for one analog program. So, for example, while a station broadcasting in analog on channel 7 is only able to offer viewers one program, a station broadcasting in digital on channel 7 can offer viewers one digital program on channel 7-1, a second digital program on channel 7-2, a third digital program on channel 7-3, and so on. This means more programming choices for viewers. Further, DTV provides interactive video and data services that were not possible with analog technology.Analog DTV HDTV
Date for final transition to digital was June 12, 2009. Since June 13, 2009, all full-power U.S. stations have broadcast digital –only signals.
Consumers will always be able to connect an inexpensive receiver (a digital-to-analog converter box) to their existing analog TV to decode DTV broadcast signals.
Digital-to-analog converter boxes will not convert your analog TV to High Definition (HD).
Analog TV sets will continue to work with cable, satellite, VCR, DVD players, camcorders, video game consoles and other devices for many years. Digital cable or digital satellite does not mean a program is in High Definition (HD).

The DTV transition will provide broadcasters with a greater number of audio channels with which they may provide voluntary video description.

Digital-to-analog converter boxes are not required to process all associated audio services broadcast by a DTV station, so consumers should check with manufacturers and retailers to learn more about whether specific digital-to-analog converter boxes are able to provide video descriptions.

Although televisions with digital tuners should be able to process the audio services associated with DTV signals, consumers should confirm that a particular digital television includes this feature by checking with the appropriate manufacturer or retailer.

If purchasing a digital television or digital-to-analog converter box, consumers should ask the manufacturer or retailer how audio streams are accessed, and whether the remote control and on-screen menus are accessible to individuals with vision disabilities.

Consumers using multi-channel video services (e.g., cable or satellite) should ask their service provider for additional information about the availability of video description. To the extent that such providers receive programming with video description, those video descriptions should be delivered to the consumer.

Video descriptions are a way to inform people who are blind or have other vision disabilities of what is happening on the television screen. Video description is the insertion of verbal descriptions about the setting and/or action in a program when information about these visual elements is not contained in the audio portion of the program. These descriptions supplement the regular audio track of the program.

Some programming has contained video descriptions for a number of years. At present, video descriptions are available through the Secondary Audio Programming (SAP) channel on an analog stereo TV set or VCR.

In July 2000, the FCC adopted rules to make television more accessible to people with vision disabilities by mandating that a certain amount of programming contain video description. These rules took effect in April 2002, but were vacated by a federal court in November 2002. As a result, video description is not required. Nevertheless, some programming providers voluntarily continue to provide video descriptions. Also, the requirement in Section 79.2 of the FCC’s rules that emergency information provided on television be accessible to individuals who have vision disabilities is still in place. This means that broadcasters must aurally describe any emergency information that is shown on the screen (e.g., weather map showing tornadoes) and must accompany any emergency information that is not orally described (i.e., information presented in a crawl or scroll) with an aural tone which instructs individuals with vision disabilities to turn to a radio or another source for more information.

Impact of Digital Television Transition on Video Description

With digital television, broadcasters have more audio channels on which to provide video description. Because digital television encodes audio in a different manner than the encoding used in analog television, digital television does not utilize a SAP channel to transmit video descriptions. The digital television standards provide for two types of main audio service and six types of associated services, including associated services for people with vision disabilities. The standards also permit the transmission of secondary language programming. So while there was one option under the old analog TV service (i.e., the SAP channel), broadcasters now have more audio channels to provide this voluntary service. However, we note that inserting video descriptions into digital programming that was not created by the distributor may involve additional expense for broadcasters; for this reason, consumers should contact their local broadcasters to determine whether video description is offered.

Televisions with digital tuners should be able to process the audio services associated with the digital TV signals through functions that are built into their systems. Consumers should confirm with the manufacturer, owner’s manual or retailer prior to purchase to determine if this feature is included in the digital TV. For consumers who will be using a digital-to-analog converter box to receive digital over-the-air television signals on an analog television, we note that some of the digital-to-analog converter boxes that have been approved for NTIA coupon eligibility are capable of processing the associated audio services that are broadcast by a digital television station. In particular, the WGBH National Center for Accessible Media, located in Boston, Massachusetts, has found that two specific coupon-eligible digital-to-analog converter boxes – the Digital Stream DTX 9900 and Insignia NS-DXA1 – have demonstrated the capability to pass through video description.¹ However, because coupon-eligible digital-to-analog converter boxes are not required to have this feature, consumers are advised to check with the manufacturer, owner’s manual or retailer prior to purchase to determine if a specific digital-to-analog converter box will serve their particular needs.

Accessing additional audio program streams (including video description) typically occurs either though a designated button on the remote control or through an on-screen menu. Unfortunately, if the controls on the television or digital-to-analog converter box are not accessible to people with vision disabilities, it may be a challenge to obtain the descriptions. In such cases, the consumer must know which audio stream the video description is on in advance, as well as how to access this channel. We therefore urge consumers to ask the manufacturer or retailer how audio streams are accessed prior to purchasing a digital television or digital-to-analog converter box. In addition, the consumer should ask whether the on-screen menus – as well as the remote controls that are used to access the on-screen menus – are accessible to individuals who have vision disabilities. Finally, the consumer should contact local television stations to see if they are transmitting video descriptions, and if so, for which programs.

Consumers using cable or satellite services should ask for additional information about the availability of video description from their service providers. To the extent that cable systems, satellite systems or other multi-channel video programming distributors receive programming with video description, those video descriptions should be delivered to the consumer. As with broadcast television, subscription-based television consumers must ensure that their television is capable of displaying available video descriptions and that video description functionality may be accessed by people with vision disabilities.

DIGITAL TELEVISION IN NIGERIA
Star TV Network a collaboration between NTA and its Chinese partners StarTimes of China has launched a new pay TV service in Nigeria with over 30 channels.
“Startimes uses Digital Video Broadcast on Terrestrial (DVB-T), a new technology which does not require a dish. It comes with just a decoder. The technology guarantees stable signal in bad weather conditions like gusty and rainy days. It also eliminates the usual cost of installation as it does not require a satellite dish and only needs a TV antenna”.
NTA Star TV Network plans to deploy StarTimes throughout Nigeria within five years of launch. For now NTA say that StarTimes coverage is in Lagos, Abuja, and Port Harcourt. NTA Startimes coverage is planned to expand to more cities soon.
Mobile TV services using DVB-H are well underway in Nigeria. The rollout is already complete in Abuja, Lagos, Port Harcourt and Ibadan. The next phase will expand the coverage to Onitsha, Asaba, Aba Benin City, Enugu and Kaduna. With a further phase planned to cover Kano, Jos and Katsina.
The current service was launched by MTN in September 2007 and will be free-to-air until March 2011. It provides 12 channels, which include NTA, CNN and African Magic.
Phones from three manufacturers are currently being used to receive the network; these are the Samsung P910, Nokia N96 and ZTE P912.
The transmission parameters being used are QPSK modulation, FEC 2/3, GI ¼ and MPE-FEC 7/8 all in an 8MHz bandwidth. The data payload is 4.95 Mbps.

DMTV enlarges Mobile DVB-H TV in Africa. For instance, Nokia Siemens Networks is providing mobile television provider DMTV with a state-of-the-art Digital Video Broadcasting Handheld (DVB-H) solution in Ghana, Kenya, Namibia and Nigeria. The system will allow operators across the region to provide an enhanced TV viewing experience on multiple devices, including the latest Nokia phones, according to a recent press release.
Aleksi Toikkanen, Head of Consulting and Systems Integration for DMTV at Nokia Siemens Networks said, “We are glad to support DMTV to be among the first to launch OMA BCast compliant mobile television broadcasts in Africa. With our open standard solution we help DMTV attract new customer groups with a state of the art Mobile TV service. We are excited with the prospect of DMTV becoming the largest DVB-H broadcaster in the continent. Knowing the specific market in Africa we foresee huge growth potential in connecting people via mobile television and the Internet.”

Nigerian telecommunications company MTN and Multichoice Nigeria have officially launched Mobile Television. The service using DVB-H technology is transmitted on the MTN network.
Nigeria began testing the DVB-H service in Abuja during September 2007 extending the service to Lagos later. Free-to-air access was allowed in both locations until December 2007 when conditional access was enabled.
A bouquet of 10 channels spanning movies including the immensely popular Africa magic channel, news, sports and children’s programs (cartoons) are available to customers who subscribe to the new service which is called DStv on the MTN network.
The DVB-H service will be extended to other parts of Nigeria later.

2015 target for Nigeria’s Digitisation
The Federal Government has set 2015 as the year for full digitisation in Nigeria, Mr Frank Nweke Jnr. disclosed on August 22nd at the opening of a workshop on the strategies for migration to digital broadcasting in Africa. He said that the Federal government has mandated all planners to incorporate digitalisation of broadcasting in the nations development agenda for the next 10 years.
In his paper ‘Establishing a Viable Broadcasting Policy for Africa: What are the Stakes and Options?’ The Kenyan assistant Minister for Information and Communication, Hon. Koigi wa Wamwere, noted that Africa has no option than to digitise radio and TV broadcasting in line with the worlds change to digital technology or perish as a continent. He said that Africans were already starved of information about their own societies, countries, other African countries and the world.
’Our thirst for information is big and it must be quenched quickly’ He went on to say that for the people to have more information more radio and TV stations were required and because the spectrum was already crowded the only way to obtain the additional space required was through digitisation.

A digital entertainment cable television with bias for information technology, business and gospel is set to hit the Nigerian screen soon. The TV called Focus TV is a cable channel on the Disc Communications platform. Coordinator of the cable TV, Tayo Adewusi, stated that the station is one in a bouquet of digital cable channels that can be received with an installed Yagi antenna on UHF 45.7 MHz on the DISC terrestrial transmission space.

He stated that it has thus become a powerful tool in the hands of creative men and women, entertainers, politicians and the state as a medium for broadcasting items of news, music, talk, sports, entertainments and movies for people to appreciate.

Adewusi added that “the arrival of digital technology in television broadcasting has further raised the stakes, as items of weather, holiday, business and more can be accessed on screen using a remote control port. This, according to him, is in addition to quality picture and networking brilliance which ensures ‘no signal drop’ .

He reiterated that the story of Focus Television, is one that derives from the weighty proposition put forward by the visionary coordinating executive in concert with a bevy of professionals and kept in view until now. Programmes he added, have also been galvanized to sustain a projected viewership base of five million subscribers. For this reason, the station, he noted, promises to be ‘ uniquely different’. This ensign he disclosed is a constant reminder of its duty to the people they serve and to ensure the much talked about ‘local content’ that is needed to encourage ingenuity and pride of place in home grown broadcast inputs among Industry Practitioners at various levels.

He stated that Focus TV is coming on stream with its network of experienced broadcast journalism professionals poised to foster an enduring and profitable cable channel that will stream entertainment, business, sports, features, documentaries, religious broadcast, news and quality programmes. It has bias for Information and Communications Technology – ICT reporting in line with global trends which take into cognisance the role of ICT in the development of the various strata of society and humanity.

Adewusi who brings his experience to bear on the new digital TV offering is the anchor person of ICT Watch; a weekly industry feature on Minaj Broadcast International (MBI) which he has sustained for seven years and continues to provide issue-based reports and analyses as well as the coverage of industry innovation and product launch.

He stated that broadcast investments around the world and the rapid growth and expanse seen in the platforms of propagation are the result of technology, innovation and liberalization which expressively have engendered resolute appetite by developers, practitioners and consumers of this media of mass communication. Adewusi believes that for the most part, liberalization has been the most dominant aspect that continues to influence the growth seen in broadcasting, whose history can effectively be traced to 1959 in Nigeria .

DTV has several advantages over analog TV, the most significant being that digital channels take up less bandwidth, and the bandwidth needs are continuously variable, at a corresponding reduction in image quality depending on the level of compression as well as the resolution of the transmitted image. This means that digital broadcasters can provide more digital channels in the same space, provide high-definition television service, or provide other non-television services such as multimedia or interactivity. DTV also permits special services such as multiplexing (more than one program on the same channel), electronic program guides and additional languages (spoken or subtitled). The sale of non-television services may provide an additional revenue source.

Digital signals react differently to interference than analog signals. For example, common problems with analog television include ghosting of images, noise from weak signals, and many other potential problems which degrade the quality of the image and sound, although the program material may still be watchable. With digital television, the audio and video must be synchronized digitally, so reception of the digital signal must be very nearly complete; otherwise, neither audio nor video will be usable. Short of this complete failure, “blocky” video is seen when the digital signal experiences interference.

Analog switch-off would render a non-digital television obsolete unless it is connected to an external digital tuner. An external converter box can be added to non-digital televisions to receive the new digital signals. Several of these devices have already been introduced, with availability on the increase. In the United States, a government-sponsored coupon was available to offset the cost of an external converter box. Analog switch-off took place on June 12, 2009 in the United States and is scheduled for August 31, 2011 in Canada, July 24, 2011 in Japan, by 2012 in the United Kingdom and in Ireland by 2013 in Australia and by 2015 in the Philippines

Environmental issues

The adoption of a broadcast standard incompatible with existing analog receivers has created the problem of large numbers of analog receivers being discarded during digital television transition. An estimated 99 million unused analog TV receivers are currently in storage in the US alone[11] and, while some obsolete receivers are being retrofitted with converters, many more are simply dumped in landfills[12] where they represent a source of toxic metals such as lead as well as lesser amounts of materials such as barium, cadmium and chromium.[13]

While the glass in cathode ray tubes contains an average of 3.62 kilograms (8.0 lb) of lead[14] (amount varies from 1.08 lb to 11.28 lb, depending on screen size but the lead is “stable and immobile”[15]) which can have long-term negative effects on the environment if dumped as landfill,[16] the glass envelope can be recycled at suitably-equipped facilities.[17] Other portions of the receiver may be subject to disposal as hazardous material.

Local restrictions on disposal of these materials vary widely; in some cases second-hand stores have refused to accept working color television receivers for resale due to the increasing costs of disposing of unsold TV’s. Those thrift stores which are still accepting donated TV’s have reported significant increases in good-condition working used television receivers abandoned by viewers who often expect them not to work after digital transition.

In Michigan, one recycler has estimated that as many as one household in four will dispose of or recycle a TV set in the next year.[19] The digital television transition, migration to high-definition television receivers and the replacement of CRTs with flatscreens are all factors in the increasing number of discarded analog CRT-based television receivers.

Technical limitations This section does not cite any references or sources.
Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources.

Compression artifacts and allocated bandwidth

DTV images have some picture defects that are not present on analog television or motion picture cinema, because of present-day limitations of bandwidth and compression algorithms such as MPEG-2. This defect is sometimes referred to as “mosquito noise”.

Because of the way the human visual system works, defects in an image that are localized to particular features of the image or that come and go are more perceptible than defects that are uniform and constant. However, the DTV system is designed to take advantage of other limitations of the human visual system to help mask these flaws, e.g. by allowing more compression artifacts during fast motion where the eye cannot track and resolve them as easily and, conversely, minimizing artifacts in still backgrounds that may be closely examined in a scene

Effects of poor reception

Changes in signal reception from factors such as degrading antenna connections or changing weather conditions may gradually reduce the quality of analog TV. The nature of digital TV results in a perfectly-decodable video initially, until the receiving equipment starts picking up interference that overpowers the desired signal or if the signal is too weak to decode. Some equipment will show a garbled picture with significant damage, while other devices may go directly from perfectly-decodable video to no video at all or lock up. This phenomenon is known as the digital cliff effect.

For remote locations, distant channels that, as analog signals, were previously usable in a snowy and degraded state may, as digital signals, be perfectly decodable or may become completely unavailable. In areas where transmitting antennas are located on mountains, viewers who are too close to the transmitter may find reception difficult or impossible because the strongest part of the broadcast signal passes above them. The use of higher frequencies will add to these problems, especially in cases where a clear line-of-sight from the receiving antenna to the transmitter is not available.

Multi-path interference is a much more significant problem for DTV than for analog TV and affects reception, particularly when using simple antennas such as rabbit ears. This is perceived as ghosting with analog broadcasts, but this same problem manifests itself in a different way with DTV. Multi-path can be worse for DTV under high signal conditions. If the problem is severe enough, multi-path can be perceived by the viewer as a spotty loss of audio or picture freezing and pixelation.

Dynamic multipath interference, in which the delay and magnitude of reflections are rapidly changing, is particularly problematic for digital reception. While this just produces moving and changing ghost images for analog TV, it can render a digital signal impossible to decode. The 8VSB-based standards in use in North American ATSC broadcasts are particularly vulnerable to problems from dynamic multipath; this has the potential to severely limit mobile or portable use of digital television receivers.

Adeniyi (2009) however said, Nigeria had officially started digitization in December, 2007. After President Umaru Yar’adua approved and directed the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to set motion and pilot the programme towards the switch-over date.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM:
The technology of analogue has been with Nigeria since 1959, so will the advent of digital technology be a divide or a spring board?
This work seeks to examine the challenges and effectiveness of transmission from analog to digital television transmission in Nigeria.
1.3 RESEARCH QUESTIONS:
The research seeks to find out the following issues;
i. What is the effect of digital television on existing analog technology?
ii. Why should we switch to digital television?
iii. To what extent can journalists cope with the new technology?
iv. what challenge is the transition to digital techniques posing for television stations in Nigeria?
v. What is the financial implication of the switch-over on the analog-dependent viewers?
1.4 THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK:
This research is affixed on the Diffusion andTechnological Determinism Theory. Denis (2005:102) says any history of communication technologies testifies to the accelerated pace of innovation and of material potential as an outcome, and some theorists are inclined to identify distinct phases. Rogers (1986), for instance locates turning points at the invention of writing, the beginning of printing in the fifteenth century, the mid-nineteen century start to the telecommunication era, and the age of interactive communication beginning in 1946 with the inventions of mainframe computer. Schement and Curtis (1995) provide us with a detailed timeline of communication technology inventions, which they classify according to their being either conceptual/ institutional or devices for acquisition and storage or being related to processing and distribution. According to this theory, communication is used to transfer technological innovations from development agencies to their clients so as to create an appetite for change through raising a climate for modernization among members of the public.
Thus the following assumptions as related to this work include:
i. An overly optimistic view shares the conviction that, the development and application of technology can resolve all varied problems of mankind. (of course those that are physical)
ii. That technology is the proponent factor for development.
iii. That technology is an inexorable, irresistible, and overwhelming force, which is a message in its own right (Anaeto et al 2008: 178-179)
The diffusion and technological determinism theory is used based on the fact that, technology according to the theory is a message and an answer to all human physical need. And since technological innovations can imbibe development through the diffusion of the message it caries, then there is no doubt that digital broadcasting is the answer to all broadcast problems associated with the analog.
2.0 REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
According to McQuail (2005:137) the fundamental aspect of information and communication technology is digitalization, the process by which all texts can be reduced to a binary code and can share the same process of production, distribution and storage. Due to the nature of the airwaves used to transmit in digital broadcasting, the picture and sound quality is greatly enhanced.
The Bureau of information and telecommunication in the United States (2003:3) writes that Digital television (DTV) broadcasts are transmitted using a digital signals rather than an analog signal.
Sennit (2008) states that digital television is a broadcasting technology that offers viewers sharper pictures and enhanced sound quality compared to the existing analog television by transmitting large qualities of data in compact form, just like in personal computers, compact disc and the internet.
Also Lieberman and David (2008:55) said that digital Television is an innovation new type of broadcasting technology that will transform television viewing experience. It enables television stations to provide dramatically clearer pictures and better sound qualities. Digital television can also offer multiple programming choices, interactive capabilities and date services such as significantly enhanced closed captioning. Lieberman and David went further to explained that digital television allows stations to offer a number of new and better services as it also enable television stations to provide several channels of programming at once. This is known as multicasting, and can also be used to provide data services that are not possible with analogue technology.
The National broadcasting commission recognized digitization, the convention of the broadcast and communication system from analogue to digital as an important global movement driven by the international telecommunications union (ITU), to revolutionize broadcasting as we know ‘it’ digitization to improve the quality of reception and ensure a more efficient use of the spectrum, which is a scarce and finite natural resources belonging to all Nigerians and held in trust by license.
Sennitt (2008) reveals that, the transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting will affect all segments in the broadcasting value chain, namely; content production, transmission and reception as all will require technical upgrading to support digital transmission.
2.1 REVIEW OF EMPIRICAL STUDY
Digitization and the challenges of broadcasting on African society.
Bassey (2009) highlighted four major challenges African Broadcasters will meet in the journey to digital conversion, to include promotion of digital television, upgrade, new licenses and multi channel availability. Bassey went further to states that one of the reasons for low diffusion of the digital technology is that most countries in African, if not all of them have been the lack of knowledge about the technology.
According to him, another challenge is the entrance of new players, which will precipitate a change in organization and strategies as the digital television industry has been shaped around complex vertically integrated structures, where proprietary systems prevail.
1.1 CONCLUSION
There is a new technology with more efficient way of transmitting quality sound and picture by turning them into conceptualized data. The resulting implication of digitization is that all the present television stations in Nigeria will vacate the analogue airwaves the industry stand since the introduction of television in 1959. Among other things, the switch to digital will open up valuable spectrum space that will carry over – the – air broadcasts so that it can be used for emergency response and other transmission
The arrival of digital television has posed a threat to the old analogue equipment. The use of converter box and the low economic power of some broadcasters and individuals to transit conveniently is a big problem. The lack of knowledge about the technology also pose a great challenge to Nigerians

1.2 RECOMMENDATION
i. The broadcast industry and the governments must publicize, enlighten and create various ways to make consumer know about the digital conversion.
ii. To make this switch-over journey smoothly to all segments of the society, Nigerian government may consider borrowing a leaf from the united states where congress set aside one point five billion pounds for a massive coupon programme to help analog- dependent viewers buy converter boxes to equip their televisions to receive digital signals
iii. For historic change to be achieved in Nigeria, all segments of the Nigerian society from broadcasters, political/policy makers, manufacturers, programme producers and the views must be actively involved.

REFERENCES:
Anaeto. G, Onobajos and Osifeso, J. (2008) models and theories of communication Bowie African Renassance Book Incorporated.
Bassey D. (2009) “Digital and the challenges of Broadcasting on African Society” Retrieved From: htt//www.Technologytime.com.
Denis McQuail (2005) McQuail’s Mass Communication Theory; London Sage Publications,
Lieberman, D. (2008) “change to digital may cut off emergency information. Retrieved from: htt//www.cyberright, org/documents/bangemann.htm.
What is DTV? What You Need to Know: Retrieved from http://www.dtv.gov/whatisdtv.html on 24/11/2010

TRANSITION FOM ANALOGUE TO DIGITAL BROADCASTING: GAINS AND CHALLENGES TO NIGERIA TV BROADCASTING

BY
KUSUGH, TERNENGE
BSU/SS/MSC/09/4614

BEING THE THIRD SEMINAR PAPER SUBMITTED TO THE DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATION BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI, IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF ONE OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE COURSE-COM 702: BROADCAST JOURNALISM SEMINAR.

LECTURER:
KOMBOL, M.A. (Ph.D).

NOVEMBER, 2010
ABSTRACT
This seminar paper concerns itself the gains and challenges that are likely to affect digital television broadcasting in Nigeria. Facts and findings generated from this study reveal that digital television broadcasting, when commenced will help to improve the quality of programmes. Also it will help to improve the reach. The study also found that DTV broadcasting will help to draw foreign investors as well as generate huge revenue for improved economy. The study revealed that despite a number of successes provided by the new technology in the broadcast industry, there are also some challenges which are likely to affect the new development if not properly implemented. Those challenges include; technical problem, meeting consumer demand, imposed government regulation, citing and construction of DTV towers, public interest, skilled manpower, lack of finance and so on. The study therefore concludes that the idea of DTV broadcasting is a good one since it will help to improve quality programming and reception quality. It is therefore recommended that since the challenges that are likely to affect DTV broadcasting in Nigeria are already discovered and spelled out care must be taken to ensure that adequate preparation is made to overcoming those challenges before the deadline for transition from analogue to digital comes the year 2012. Government must join forces with other stockholders towards the actualization of this noble dream.

1.1. BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY

A recast into the history of television in Nigeria reveals that Nigeria Television Authority has celebrated her 50 years (Golden Jubelee) last year. This therefore means that Nigeria Television Authority is now 51 years old. Ekeh (2009:2009) observes that the Africa’s first television station, Western Nigerian Television (WNTV) was established in 1959. From that year, television-broadcasting spread massively across Nigeria motivated by two main factors: politics and education. Technical and technological reasons should be added as these enabled a very fast proliferation of radio and TV stations in Nigeria during the about last thirty years.

In 1960, a year later, the Eastern Nigeria TV Service (ENTV) was established. The federal government established the Nigerian Television Service (NTS) in Lagos in 1962. The development of television broadcasting reflected the regional versus federal politics and aspirations with each of the 21 Nigerian states opting for its TV station.

Within 25 years, 34 TV stations had been established in Nigeria, at a rate of 1.5 stations a year. Nigeria at this time became the fourth largest TV network in the world. There is an ever -increasing choice of TV channels, and the oil revenues helped to increase the number of TV sets. In the mid-seventies about 70% of Nigeria’s urban population had access to TV programmes.

In the years since its invention, television has quickly come to occupy a slot as one of the defining forces of our age. The sheer capacity to inform, educate and in particular, entertain multitudes has spawned immense advantages for purveyors – including owners of broadcast studios, sponsors and television personages – of the television set. Many would be able to recollect the pivotal role television played in creating great brands? How iconic would such events as the World Cup, the Olympics or brands like Guinness, Coca-Cola, and MTN be today if they didn’t have a promotional channel like television? Any wonder why CNN, and BBC are among some of the leading influencers of events in today’s world. The public television stations are just in the process of shaking off an image of unabashed government mouthpieces, after decades of inevitable pandering to government whims in the years of Nigeria’s military dictatorship.

However, television broadcasting in Nigeria, throughout the years since its inception has been transmitting through analogue devices. The migration of television broadcasting from the traditional television set to the mobile device will portend a whole new world of opportunity to advertisers wishing to reach customers and prospects and to the entire advertising industry itself.

The main challenge of broadcasting today all over the world and indeed in Nigeria is migrating from analogue to digital broadcasting. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has set a deadline for the full transition to digital broadcast for 2015, and Nigeria is a signatory to this agreement, fixing its switchover date at 31 December 2012. Technology has grown rapidly since the analog system was introduced, and the current analog system cannot support future development.

According to engineer, Yomi Bolarinwa of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), there are 24 million televisions in households in Nigeria, four million in South Africa, and three million in Ghana. He said “there are 70 million television sets in homes in the US, and over 50% of this number has access to satellite television.”

According to him, discussions about the switchover date from the 51-year-old analog model began in Nigeria in 2004. Bolarinwa stressed that publicity is a key element in the transition, and urged the press to adequately inform and educate the populace on this matter.

But the question is what are possible opportunities and challenges available to be accrued from this innovation?

1.2. STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Almost all analog formats in current use were standardized between the 1940s and 1950s and have had to be adapted to the technological innovations since then. Initially offering only black and white images with monophonic sound, the formats have had to be modified to broadcast in color, stereo sound, SAP, captioning, and other information all while being backwards compatible with televisions unable to use the features. Additionally, engineers have had to implement these protocols within the limits of a set bandwidth and the tolerances of an inefficient analog format.
In Nigeria therefore, The Federal Government has set June 17 and later December 31, 2012 as switchover date for the transition of analogue to digital Television Broadcasting, three years ahead of the International Telephone Union’s (ITU), of which Nigeria is a member and signatory, deadline of 2015 (UHF) and 2020 (VHF) for full transition worldwide.
This as Abbas (2010) observes is coming on the heels of similar ‘self set’ deadlines of mostly European and African countries like Britain, Sweden, France, Kenya and South Africa among others. The issue this study seeks to examine is the problems and prospects that are likely to accompany this innovation.

1.3. RESEARCH QUESTIONS
Based on the problem statement of this study, the following research questions have formulated to guide the study:

1. What are the likely advantages of digital television in Nigeria?

2. What are the perceived challenges of DTV broadcasting in Nigeria?

2.4. DEFINITION OF TERMS
For the purpose of clarity, the following key words are selected and are defined:
1. Television digital transition: The digital television transition is a process in which analog television broadcasting is converted to and replaced by digital television. This primarily involves both TV stations and over-the-air viewers; however it also involves content providers like TV networks, and cable TV conversion to digital cable (Wikipedia, 2010).
2. Broadcasting: this is a process of disseminating information through electromagnetic waves to a large proportion of users (audience).

1.5. REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE

1.5. I. THE CONCEPT OF DIGITAL TELEVISION BROADCASTING
Digital television is a new technology for transmitting and receiving broadcast television signals. Using an additional 6 megahertz (MHz) of broadcast spectrum temporarily granted by Congress and the FCC for a period of no fewer than 9 years, broadcasters will be able to develop a diverse range of new digital television programming and services while continuing to transmit conventional analog television programming on their existing allotments of spectrum, as required by the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (Telecommunications Act of 1996).
A digital standard is superior to analog because of its greater accuracy, versatility, efficiency, and interoperability with other electronic media. Digital signals also have the advantage of generating no noise or “ghosting,” and being more resistant to signal interference. Within the range of the signal, this results in a perfect signal.
One of the primary rationales for the Nation’s transition to digital television is high-definition television, or HDTV. This transmission standard contains up to six times more data than conventional television signals and at least twice the picture resolution. HDTV images have a 16-to-9 aspect ratio (the ratio of width to height), providing a wider image than the 4-to-3 ratio that has characterized television since 1941. This higher resolution and different aspect ratio makes HDTV images substantially more vivid and engaging than the images produced by the existing television format, and that effect is enhanced by five discrete channels of CD-quality audio.
But DTV is not just about HDTV. As a digital (and not analog) signal, DTV enables broadcasters to offer a variety of innovations. Instead of sending an HDTV signal of 19.4 megabits per second, for example, a broadcast station can send as many as five digital “standard-definition television” (SDTV) signals, each of which might consist of 4 to 5 megabits per second. Although SDTV images are not as sharp as HDTV, they are superior to existing television images. This new capacity, known as “multicasting” or “multiplexing,” is expected to allow broadcasters to compete with other multichannel media such as cable and direct broadcast satellite systems. Moreover, as new advances in compression technology occur in the years ahead, broadcast stations are expected to fit even more SDTV signals into the same spectrum allotment.
Another DTV capability is the ability to provide new kinds of video and data services, such as subscription television programming, computer software distribution, data transmissions, teletext, interactive services, and audio signals, among others. Referred to as “ancillary and supplementary services” under the Telecommunications Act of 1996, these services include such potentially revenue-producing innovations as stock prices, sports scores, classified advertising, paging services, “zoned” news reports, advertising targeted to specific television sets, “time-shifted” video programming, and closed-circuit television services.
These choices — HDTV, multicasting and innovative video/information services — are not mutually exclusive. Within a single programming day, a broadcaster will have the flexibility to shift back and forth between different DTV modes in different day parts. During daytime, for example, a station might show four SDTV channels; during primetime, programming might switch to a single HDTV program such as a movie or wide-screen sporting event. Because different gradations of HDTV and SDTV picture resolution are possible — there are 18 different transmission formats — a station can mix and match video programming with data services, provided that the various signals fit within the 6 MHz bandwidth.
All this suggests that over the next 10 to 15 years, DTV will usher in a sweeping transformation of broadcast television — its programming and services, its revenue sources, its ownership structures, and its outside partnerships. Although many existing programming genres and styles will surely continue, innovations in video programming and information services will arise, fueled in no small part by the anticipated convergence of personal computer and television technologies. In addition, broadcast television may develop new services in alliance with other telecommunications media — a scenario made possible by digital code, which is increasingly becoming the common language for all electronic media.
It is difficult to predict which programming and revenue models broadcasters will choose to develop as they commence DTV transmission. The Telecommunications Act of 1996, which authorized the FCC to give an additional 6 MHz channel to existing broadcasters for digital transmissions, is deliberately flexible. Much will depend on the competitive opportunities that broadcasters identify as promising, emerging market conditions, and the regulatory ground rules.
1.6. THE NIGERIAN EFFORTS IN MEETING THE DEADLINE SO FAR
To beat the global timetable of transition from Analogue to Digital broadcasting and meet President Yar’ Adua’s Vision 2020, the Nigerian Communication Satellite and DIGITECH Broadcasting Ltd have gone into partnership. During the signing of a Memorandum of Under-standing (MOU), the Mana-ging Director NIGCOMSAT, Ahmed Rufai Lawal, said the venture would afford Nigerians opportunity to have access to all Nigerian television and radio stations as well as over 200 other channels. The NIGCOMSAT Boss said the solution based joint venture is to ensure that the historically disadvantaged Nigerians now have access to quality communication without necessarily paying exorbitant fees for the opportunity. Lawal said the intent of this joint venture is also to redress the long term damage to the Nigerian broadcasting environment created by years of technological dumping and inconsistent approach to signal and content distribution by practitioners.
“The unfortunate outcome is that the man in the village who through no fault of his has little access to information. In most cases, the individual has only one source of information his state Radio or TV or from NTA and FRCN. This type of Nigerian may not travel outside his geographic state of origin which in effect handicaps him sociologically.”
Shola Ajay, MD DIGITECH Broadcasting Ltd, is of the opinion that information is a right and not a privilege therefore Nigerians especially in the rural areas should be able to receive signals from all over the country and around the world. This is where the partnership comes in. DIGITECH takes cognizance of the fact that service of this magnitude will both be costly infrastructurally, and elaborate in the real intention of all Nigerian broadcasters to take advantage of this service (Adaobi,2010).
Further more, Ajay stated that the focus of the partnership is to allow broadcasters concentrate on the provision of quality content in order to realize maximum advertising revenue. “The ratio of content funding to transmission cost for most broadcast organizations is very lopsidedly in favour of the latter. The reversal of the trend would simply make these organizations formidable since they can now compete for advertising naira effectively.” Again the venture is to significantly lower the entry cost for new broadcasting practitioners and also to ensure that technical infrastructure is not deterrent to broadcast practitioners. Rufai noted that “this joint venture conclude the fact that existing broadcasters and prospective new pay TV and licensed Free to Air operators will have access to DIGITECH’s facilities and those of its overseas partners such as TELEMEDIA. He added that it will serve as an open door to attract foreign investors as it will showcase the untapped Nigerian cultural resources which will in the long run increase its foreign direct investment. Apart from millions of dollars which would be accrued into the government coffers, Rufai explained, “the DIGITECH service will afford broadcasters two distinct advantages amongst which their signal instantly becomes national whereby any citizens of Nigeria can receive their signals anywhere and West Africa through a decoder”. The joint venture when operational will provide a level playing ground for all broadcasters to compete on the basis of content and not access to hardware. The project is to commence within the next six months.
1.7. PROSPECTS OF DIGITAL TELEVION BROADCSTING (DTV)
Generally, the advent of digital television will bring remarkable, exciting changes to broadcasting. Consumers will have many more choices from broadcast television, from sharp high-definition television programming and multicasting of niche-audience channels to new information services and computer-interactivity. Broadcasters will have new opportunities to develop innovative programming and services, along with new revenue streams and market franchises. DTV will help broadcasting evolve and compete in the new media environment, while ensuring that public interest needs are still met through over-the-air broadcasting. Specifically therefore the the DTV will bring about the following advantages:
-Progressive scanning, as explained below, is a more demanding technical format than the current “interlaced scanning” that will allow for a smoother sequencing of video picture frames and interactivity between computers and television sets.
-Square pixels, or the most basic element of video image data, facilitate the interoperability of the new video standard with other imaging and information systems, including computers. With 1,920 pixels per line displayed on 1,080 lines per frame, the resolution of HDTV images is much sharper than that of the current NTSC format.
-increased frame rates allow a smoother simulation of motion in television signals; the more frames per second, the more realistic the portrayal of motion. The ACATS proposal allowed three different frame rates—24, 30, and 60 frames per second.
-Additional lines per frame allow video images to be sharper in resolution. The current NTSC format provides for 525 horizontal lines of picture data; the HDTV standards provide for either 720 or 1080 horizontal lines.
-Different aspect ratios give viewers a wider field of view, so that the viewing experience is more encompassing, in the manner of a film. In the existing NTSC format, the aspect ratio, or relation of the width to the height of the screen, is 4-to-3. In HDTV, the aspect ratio is a wider, more rectangular 16 to 9 aspect ratio, which is the same dimension as 35-millimeter film.
-Sound is more vivid in digital television, too, because there are five discrete channels of CD- quality audio, along with a sub-woofer channel for deeper sounds. Over time, DTV programming is likely to exploit these new capabilities.
Although these technical improvements would help make television programming more appealing, the overarching goal of the ATV standard, the FCC later stated, is to:
-Promote the success of a free, local television service using digital technology. Broadcast television’s universal availability, appeal and the programs it provides—for example, entertainment, sports, local and national news, election results, weather advisories, access for candidates and public interest programming such as educational television for children—have made broadcast television a vital service.
1.8 CHALLENGES OF DTV BROADCASTING IN NIGERIA
Although the transition from analogue to digital television broadcasting will bring about a lot of gains in television broadcasting in the country, there are also some challenges facing it. These challenges include:
What Kinds of DTV Programming and Services to Offer?
Because of the inherent versatility of digital transmissions and the still-evolving terms of market competition, how broadcasters will use their digital signals is unclear. One of the first- threshold choices broadcasters must make is whether to transmit HDTV programming, multicast, datacast, or to employ some combination of these.
Questions remain on how much revenue the new channels — whether HDTV, SDTV, or data — can actually generate. Will broadcasters cannibalize their primary signals as they pursue new DTV opportunities, or will they expand their franchises? Furthermore, anticipating the nature of DTV programming and services is made complex by the new competition among different media, especially cable, direct broadcast satellite, and the Internet. Digital television offerings may also be affected by new ownership patterns for television broadcasting, which in turn might blur the boundaries between once-distinct media. Some broadcasting experts speculate that information providers may see television stations as distribution vehicles for their data, which may encourage new corporate owners to acquire broadcast stations.
Technical Issues
Only a few technical problems stand in the way of a full rollout of digital television. The broadcast and cable industries have agreed to channel numbering for virtual channels with multicasting Investment Costs

Consumer Demand for DTV
Another uncertain variable is how quickly consumers will see value in DTV programming and services, and choose to buy DTV sets. Perhaps the most significant factor here is the cost of DTV sets. Original projections by manufacturers indicate that the new television sets will cost between $1,000 to $1,500 more than conventional high-end projection sets, or about $4,000 to $5,000.
The first high-definition television sets offered for sale in September 1998 were, however, priced at $8,000; about 100,000 are expected to be manufactured in 1998(30)– out of a universe of more than 24 million conventional sets expected to be sold in 1998. A Samsung Electronics Company official estimates that HDTV sets will sell for $3,000 by the year 2002, considerably higher than the $500 or less that most Americans now pay for new television sets.
But as new digital programming and services become more plentiful, it is expected that consumer demand for DTV sets will rise and set prices will decline.
Must-Carry Regulations
Before digital television becomes fully operational, several regulatory issues must be resolved. One of the most important is clarifying how the must-carry provisions of the Telecommunications Act will apply to digital television. Historically, cable televisions systems have had to carry the signal of local broadcasters, as mandated by the 1992 Cable Act and affirmed in the 1997 Supreme Court ruling of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. v. FCC (“Turner II”). The arrival of digital television transmission raises questions about how must-carry precedents should apply in the new television environment. Should cable systems be obliged to carry both the analog and digital television signals during the transition period, and only the analog signal, as they have under the existing must-carry rules? When cable systems do carry the digital signal, should they be obliged to carry the same amount of bandwidth as they currently do, even though that same spectrum may be carrying several programming channels and perhaps subscriber-based services? Do analog and digital broadcasts constitute separate “broadcasting stations” for the purposes of retransmission consent and digital broadcast signal carriage?
Resolving must-carry and retransmission consent requirements will affect the kind of access that cable households will have to digital television signals, what stations and channels are available over cable systems, and the rates that subscribers will have to pay. There is also concern about how must-carry rules in the new DTV environment might affect noncommercial video sources such as the Public Broadcasting System, and public affairs and public access cable channels. To help it address the must-carry/retransmission consent issue, the FCC released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on July 10, 1998, which proposes seven alternatives for implementing the must-carry provisions of the Telecommunications Act.

Citing and Construction of DTV Towers
Another pending Notice of Proposed Rulemaking invites comment on whether Federal law should allow the preemption of local zoning rules to facilitate the siting and construction of digital broadcast towers. This proceeding was initiated in August 1997 in response to a petition by the National Association of Broadcasters, which expressed concern that the local approval process for new towers could take too long and delay the introduction of DTV.
Public Interest Obligations
Finally, one of the largest unresolved issues is what public interest obligations should govern digital broadcasters in the new media marketplace. In the Telecommunications Act of 1996, Congress specified that broadcasters would continue to serve as trustees of the public’s airwaves and that public interest obligations should extend into the digital television environment:
Nothing in this section shall be construed as relieving a television broadcasting station from its obligation to serve the public interest, convenience, and necessity. In the Commission’s review of any application for renewal of a broadcast license for a television station that provides ancillary or supplementary services, the television licensee shall establish that all of its program services on the existing or advanced television spectrum are in the public interest.
Although Congress’ general intent is clear, the substantive meaning of public interest obliga- tions in the new television environment is likely to change. To determine the precise contours of a DTV licensee’s public interest obligations, the FCC plans to initiate a rulemaking in the near future. This process will be enhanced by understanding the historical development of the public interest standard in broadcasting, which is the focus of Section II of this Report. This is followed in Section III by the Advisory Committee’s formal recommendations.
For all the challenges that remain, the opportunities to build a new, more robust broadcasting system have never been greater. The sheer technological capabilities of DTV offer sweeping possibilities for program creativity as well as for the increased competitiveness of broadcasting and public interest service. The most important task at hand is to devise the most appropriate structures to facilitate all these goals.
1.9. REVIEW OF RELATED EMPIRICAL STUDIES
A survey conducted by the Harris Corporation, a provider of broadcast and radio equipment, found that as recently as December 1997, 44 percent of broadcasters were not sure exactly what they would do with DTV programming.(22) Some 33 percent said they planned to offer multicasting; another 23 percent said they definitely would offer high-definition television. For those broadcasters who will use high-definition television, most plan to do so during primetime, but not during other times of the day.(23) Of the broadcasters who plan to multicast, 50 percent predicted they would offer news and regular network programming; 47 percent said they planned to transmit information services; and 26 percent planned to air local news and public affairs. Two of the more significant findings of the Harris survey were that broadcasters will move to local digital program origination faster than generally anticipated, and that they expect to offer more locally produced news with DTV.
Some observers caution that the ways in which DTV will interact with media markets will be highly unpredictable for many years. Although it is likely that multicasting will be economically feasible for some types of programs and dayparts, no clear models exist for attracting and keeping viewers tuned in regularly in a multicasting environment. Nor is it clear how interactive services will be treated under must-carry rules.
The December 1997 Harris Corporation’s survey of broadcasters suggested that the average cost to broadcasters of converting to digital would be in the vicinity of $5.7 million. This sum is “soft” in the sense that television stations that serve the larger urban markets will likely bear greater expenses than smaller stations. The timing of purchase of DTV equipment will make a significant difference as well. In addition, the kinds and amount of equipment that stations choose to buy for local origination of DTV programming can vary immensely. For all these reasons, previous estimates of DTV conversion costs of $6 million to $10 million per station are expected to decline rapidly, probably even faster than the 20 percent annual price decrease that now prevails.

1.10. THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
DIFFUSION OF INNOVATIONS THEORY

The essence of this theory is to communicate to members of the public a discovery or idea based on research. According to Daramola (2010:65-66), diffusion is refers to the process by which new ideas are communicated to members of a social group. Innovation means ideas or inventions that are to be diffused to members of a social system. The relevance of this theory rose to the fact that DTV transition in television broadcasting in Nigeria is a new idea which should be embraced by all.

CONCLUSION/RECOMMONDATION

Based on the facts and findings generated from the above, it can be concluded that digital television broadcasting, when commenced will help to improve the quality of programmes. Also it will help to improve the reach. The study also found that DTV broadcasting will help to draw foreign investors as well as generate huge revenue for improved economy. The study revealed that despite a number of successes provided by the new technology in the broadcast industry, there are also some challenges which are likely to affect the new development if not properly implemented. Those challenges include; technical problem, meeting consumer demand, imposed government regulation, citing and construction of DTV towers, public interest, skilled manpower, lack of finance and so on. It is therefore worth finally to conclude that the idea of DTV broadcasting is a good one since it will help to improve quality programming and reception quality. It is therefore recommended that since the challenges that are likely to affect DTV broadcasting in Nigeria are already discovered and spelled out care must be taken to ensure that adequate preparation is made to overcoming those challenges before the deadline for transition from analogue to digital comes the year 2012. Government must join forces with other stockholders towards the actualization of this noble dream.

REFERENCES
Adaobi, N (2010) Nigeria set to beat global timetable on digital transition
http://www.abujainquireronline.com/fetcher.php?fid=2632,2010

Daramola, I (2003) Introduction to Mass Communication. Lagos: Rothan Press Ltd.
Ekeh, D. (2009) Nigerian television at 50: Challenges of digitalization Retrieved fromhttp://www.bizcommunity.com/Article/157/66/40113.html on November, 2010.
Service, Fourth Report and Order (1996) Advanced Television Systems and Their Impact Upon the Existing Television Broadcast
Telecommunications Act (1996, 1996). This Act amended the Communications Act of 1934
Wikipedia (2010) Digital television transition. Retrieved from
thhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_television_transitione on November, 2010.

POST GRADUATE SCHOOL, DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATION, BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI.

TOPIC:

DIGITAL TELEVISION MIGRATION IN NIGERIA: AN ASSESSMENT.

BY

LEKE, DOO

COURSE:
COM 702: BROADCAST JOURNALISM SEMINAR

LECTURER:
KOMBOL, M. A. (PH.D)

NOVEMBER, 2010
Abstract
This paper seeks to find out the challenges of migrating digital television in Nigerian broadcast stations. This paper takes a critical look at Transition from analog to digital broadcasting in Nigeria, Benefits of digital broadcasting, how to switch to DTV, features of digital broadcasting, advantages of the change. The paper also anchored on the diffusion and Technological determinism theory. The paper concludes and recommends that the Nigeria through NBC should provide a conducive environment for this transition among other.

INTRODUCTION
Television broadcast in Nigeria started with the initiative of the first Western region premier, chief Obafemi Awolowo Ibadan, the headquarters of the region. The Western Region Government went into partnership with the overseas rediffusion limited. A small transmitter of 500 watts Abafor near Ikorodu. The Television was therefore established to disseminate information and entertain viewers. The T.V station in the western region pioneered commercial broadcasting in Nigerian to supplement government subvention. Today, Nigeria has thirty six states with each aspiring to set up her own television station. The federal government is also making effort to establish a branch of NTA in each state. In 1976 Television Stations started beaming coloured programmes thus, however, opened in the history of television broadcasting in Nigeria with the federal government take over of all television services in 1978.

There is no gainsaying the fact that technology is growing at an astronomical pace so much that science fiction is daily being translated into reality, leaving very little time for adoption to these innovations.
The world is said to be in a new information age of information society, thus Digitations programme in Nigeria commenced in Abuja on June 2, 2008, following a meeting of stake holders in the broadcast industry where forum underscored the need for Nigeria to embrace the new technology, so that the country would not be turned into a dumping ground for obsolete analogue equipment. Report shows that Nigeria has set June 17, 2012 as the switch –over date from the current mode of broadcasting to the ultramodern digital terrestrial broadcasting. The date is three years before the June 17, 2015 deadline for the entire world set by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) after its congress in Geneva, Switzerland in 2006.
Adeniyi (2009)asserts that, the country officially started the digitization of its broadcast industry in December 2007, following president Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s approval, directing the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), the industry’s regulator to set motion and pilot the programme to wards the target date. The effect of this is that, all the broadcast stations in Nigeria, whether radio or television, privately own or public will be on the match, to move indisputably from analogue broadcasting to digital on or before 17th June, 2012. This movement from analog to digital broadcasting is based on the overwhelming benefits of digital broadcast over the analog. Moreover, this has posed a lot of challenges to broadcasting organization both from the financial aspect to purchase this digital equipment and the knowledge of the technology on how to manipulate them.

Digital links use data compressions which general have more efficient band width usage than analog links, which allows a content provider more room to provide services, or to produce a higher-quality signal than had been previously available with the analog technique. Gerard Igyor (2009) points out that the switch to digital only television signals in African countries will be ushering in with in the next few years is the most substantive changes to African and indeed the world’s terrestrial television since color Television was introduced in the 1970s. Because of this singular technological mission backed by government imposed deadlines, tens of millions of African households will have to buy new equipment in order to keep their analogue sets functioning, and the change will affect nearly everyone’s viewing habits. This historic technology shift will result in all the present television stations on the continent to vacate the analogue airwaves, the industry standard since the introduction of television in 1959. Among other spectrum space that now carries over –the –air broadcasts so that it can be used for emergency response and other transmissions.

STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
Information has emerged as the most vital means for development in this digital age. Analog has contributed its own part to the broadcast industry, and with the inception of the digital technology, which they say is a solution to the problems inherent in the analog system. Thus the paper examines to know those implications benefits of the digital technique over the analogue and the challenges this transitions is posing to broadcast stations across the world.

Research questions
i. What are the benefits of this digital broadcasting over the analog?
ii. What are the challenges faced by broadcast stations in trying to change from analog to digital television?
iii. Does digital television have advantages over the analog broadcasting?

Definition of Terms
Digital television: Is a broadcasting technology that offers viewers sharper pictures and enhanced, sound quality compared to existing analog television by transmitting large quantities of data in compact form, just like in personal computers, compact disc and the internet.
Digital Broadcasting: Is the practice of using digital data rather than analogue wave forms to carry broadcasts over television channels or assigned radio frequency bands.
DTV converted Box: is an easy to install electronic device that hook up to your analogue television set and over –the-air antenna and converts the digital television signal into analogue, making it Viewable on your analogue television.
Analog: Means, using a continues range of physical qualities to represent numbers.

Theoretical framework
Digital broadcasting alerts us that it is indeed time to go back to the concerns at the root of broadcasting regulation. Thus the Diffusion and Technological Determinism Theory have been adopted for this work because technology according to the theory is a message and an answer to all human physical need: And since technological innovations can imbibe development through the diffusion of the message it carries, then there is no doubt that digital broadcasting is the answer to all broadcast problems associated with the analog. This theory was propounded by Everret Rogers 1986. The proposition of the theory involves using communication to transfer technological innovation from development agencies to their client so as to create an appetite for change through raising a climate for modernization among members of the public. There are critical role for technology in the employment of mass communication for development.
The technology in mass communication serves a dual role in diffusion. They are channels for massages, as well as messages for innovation. Another technologically deterministic approach sees technology as a value –free and politically neutral asset that can be used in every social and historical context.
Anaeto et al (2008:178-179) sum up the main points in this theory which says that:
i. An overly optimistic view shares the convocation that, the development and application of technology can resolve all varied problems of mankind.
ii. That technology is the proponent factor for development.
iii. That technology is an inexorable, irresistible, and overwhelming force, which is a message in its own right.
iv.
Review of the Related Literature
The concept of Digital Television (DTV): DTV is an innovative new type of broadcasting technology that will transform your television viewing experience. Digital television enables T.V stations to provide dramatically clearer pictures and better sound quality; it can also offer multiple programming choices, interactive capabilities and data services such as significantly enhanced closed captioning. Kombol (2008:8) points out that many counties of the huge benefits which digital broadcasting offers and are making a huge effort to shift from analog broadcasting to digital broadcasting.

Transition from analog to digital broadcasting in Nigeria: Nigeria has the capacity to meet the 2012 deadline for the switchover from analog to digital television, the acting director –general of the National Broadcasting Commission NBC, Engineer Yomi Bolarinwa, said 17 June 2008 in Abuja. He spoke at a sensitization Luncheon held by the commission for media editors on the issue of the digitization of the broadcast media following the presidential approval for the 2012 data. Engineer Bolarinwa emphasized that contrary to impression in some quarters, the country “is ahead of African countries in the march towards the 2012 switchover date, as well as in the state of the industry”.
The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has set a deadline for the full transition to digital broadcast for 2015 and Nigeria is a signatory to this agreement, fixing its switchover date at December 31st 2010. Technology has grown rapidly since the analog system cannot support future development. According to the NBC Boss, there are 24million televisions in households in Nigeria, according to him discussions about the switchover date from the 50 years old analog mode began in Nigeria in 2004.
Sennitt (2008:14,Oct) quotes the Nigerian minister of communication and information, John Odey were he said that, “it is imperative for Nigeria to switch over to digital broadcasting if the nation does not want to become a dumping ground for analogue equipment from other countries. The minister said this at the inauguration of the presidential committee on the transition from analogue to digital broadcasting in Nigeria. Odey, who was represented by the minister of state for communication, Alhaji Dasuki Nakande, noted that the nation cannot afford to be left behind in the switch over when the nation consider the drastic consequences of not switching over to digital. According to him, “the government is fully aware that Nigeria cannot afford to be left behind in view of the drastic consequences on our broadcast industry and the overall information sector.
In a related vein Kombol (2008:8) says that, the transition from analog to digital broadcasting involves many changing the transmission signals as well as making sure that members of the public buy high definition television sets and get rid of standard definition television sets. He further says that the transition from analog to digital has raise many fears, for instance, many people are concerned that the transition to digital broadcasting will make the end of free television programs.
Sennitt (2008) reveals that, the transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting will affect all segments in the broadcasting value chain namely: content production, transmission and reception as all will require technical upgrading to support digital broadcast.

Benefits of Digital Broadcasting
Digital broadcasting is an improved service when compared to analog broadcasting that has been around for so many years. Kombol (2008:4) highlights many benefits which are associated with digital broadcasting which include:
1. Frees up space for essential services: Analog broadcasting is wasteful of bandwidth and grossly inefficient. Digital broadcasting transmits pictures and sound of significantly higher quality using the same 6MHZ spectrum used by analog broadcast, yet it also free up space that can be used for other essential services such as police, fire, emergencies, ambulances, etc. digital broadcasting occupies less bandwidth per programme.
2. Enhanced picture and sound quality: Digital broadcasting
Offers viewers enhanced picture and sound quality. The sound disc quality surrounds sound. Furthermore, the picture quality is enhanced because of the high resolution as well as an increased screen size. Tanner (2006:2) perceives DTV as “the most significant change brought to the TV viewing experience”.
3. Interactive television: with digital broadcasting, television, and computer services become available at the same time. This means that digital television affords viewer the opportunity of accessing various kind of information on their television sets. Tanner (2006:2) states in Weekakody (2007:3) that “DTV can provide for increased convergence (coming together of previously separated functions and audio visual media such as the internet in the same equipment) and interactivity (giving the function of feedback to viewers), that previous technologies could not.
4. Free up space for other essential services: Digital broadcasting occupies less channel space than analog broadcasting. Thus the shift from analog broadcasting to digital broadcasting will create space for other essential emergency services such as the police, health service, fire, relief/rescues etc. the federal communications commission (2008) in the us writes, that, “ congress mandated the conversion to all –digital television (DTV) transition, because all –digital broadcasting will free up frequencies for public safety communications. Also, digital is a more efficient transmission technology that allows broadcast stations to offer improved picture and sound quality, as well as offer more programming options for consumers through multiple broadcast streams. In addition some of the freed up frequencies will be used for advanced commercial wireless services for consumers.
5. Multicasting: This refers to the ability of digital broadcast transmissions to compress bandwidth. This compression creates space and allows digital broadcasting to air up to six channels at the same time. Multicasting refers to sending several programmes on one channel. Using multicasting a broadcast station can serve a diverse audience at the same time. A cable programs on one channel. All the channels are displayed on the screen for the audience to choose.
6. Data casting: This is also known as “Enhanced television” with digital broadcasting also comes the ability to transmit data in addition to pictures and sound. this members of the public prices of shares in the stock market, instructional materials for educational broadcasting, scores during sports matches etc. for example, while viewing a sports match, viewers can press the appropriate keys on the remote control to find out the current scores, or while viewing a film they can find out what that film is all about by way of a summary displayed on the screen. The Bureau of information and Telecommunication (2003:4) Explains that “digital T.VS can also send data (just like a telephone or cable modem). Data casting programs could include interactive web links, e-mail, online ordering, instant opinion polls or questions for program guests. Data casting is a technique in digital broadcasting where text can be sent as well as audio and video.
7. Multiple options for signal are transmitted in one of four ways: cable, satellite digital terrestrial T.V telephone connection
8. Internet access: digital broadcasting also provides internet access. It not only provides access to television programs. Internet access is essential to many fields of endeavor across the world.
9. Secure payment system: supports charging models like pay per view and subscription. With digital broadcasting it is possible to encrypt data, thus making it difficult for crackers to obtain passwords and use the service without paying. Payment systems are necessary in digital broadcasting because the revenue from advertising alone may be insufficient in supporting the service.

How to Switch to DTV
You can make the switch to DTV by one of the following three ways: DTV converter box, the cheapest wary is to buy a converter box that plugs into your existing analogue set. Igyor (2009) asserts that a converter box or set –top box will enable you to receive free television. Right now we do not know how much these converter boxes will be sold on the continent but this is where African governments must monitor and insist on a single or compatible models to reduce costs even if governments will subsidize the cost of the box as will be discussed later. The second method is outer light purchase of a new television set with a built in digital tuner. African governments can size on this change to also insist on local manufacture and or no importation of “tokumbo” gets.
This initial investment in a new set cost more than the first but still less than the third option of paid service. The third option involves subscribing to cable, satellite or a telephone services provider to continue using your analogue T.V set, if all desired local broadcast re carried by that service.

Review of related empirical study
Nigeria’s digital broadcast migration a mirage?
Dan oshodin (2009) points out that the 2012 date for switch over from analogue to digital broadcasting in Nigeria may be a mirage if certain steps are not immediately taken by the government and key stakeholders in the country’s fielding broadcast industry. This is the view of Ben Egbuna, Veteran broadcast manager and former Director General of the federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria. (FRCN).
Speaking at the conference on journalism and new media technologies in Africa which was held in Lagos, the veteran broadcaster noted that broadcasters and consumers alike do not have the basic information required for smooth transition less than three years to the national analogue switch –off date. In his words “Broadcasters in the country are not mobilized or galvanized for the digital project, little wonder many are ignorant even of the 2012 date and have not begun to address the ‘what”, how; ‘where’, and “who” of the transition process”.
In his paper titled “Digitization and Radio Broadcasting in Nigeria”, Egbuna who traced the historical development of radio broadcasting both locally and globally to drive his points, took a swipe at the misconception in official quarters which sees digitization only from a television perspective and uses the same rationale for both radio and television analogue switch off. He also wondered if most Nigerians are ware of the changes and cost outlay required to continue to receive-broadcast signals after the transition in 2012.
While expressing worry about the slow preparation for digital migration in Nigeria wit no visible practical steps towards actualization, Egbuna urged the government to learn from the experience of some countries that began to early digital migration and found the analogue switch –off date unachievable because of low consumer switch over capacity; citing Australia as an example. Australia had originally planned a switch –off in 2008 but has had to delay to a date to be determined between 2010 or 2012.

Migrating implication of digital broadcasting and its challenges for Nigeria
Adeniyi (2009) asserts that, the international television communication union’s position on migration was informed by the developments in telecommunication technologies which enable a more efficient use of radio frequency spectrum and improved quality picture and audio. Previously everyone relied on radio spectrum for T. V transmission but this had inherent restriction posted by the analog transmission. Adjacent analog transmission were found to be subject to interference, forcing the regulatory bodies to leaves space between channel and only allocate a small percentage of available spectrums for transmission to ensure high quality transmission and reception throughout the region served.
Since digital technology ahs opened a world of possibilities for broadcasting, a huge spectrum will be available for radio and television broadcast in the country. As a result, more frequencies or wavelengths will be available for T.V stations in the country. It will also effort the industry opportunities for interactive broadcasting as T.V sets would one do much more than receive broadcast signals. Nigerians that do not want to be left behind in the new technological development have two options. The first is for them to buy a digital –compliant television set to enable them enjoy the benefits of the new technology. The second is that even with the analog system, one can set “set –top=box” which is a digital analog signal converter. It is like the ordinary decoder that easily plugs into a television set which will allow you to continue to get your programme signals

Features of Digital Broadcasting
In addition to Adeniyi’s assertion, Yamada (2002) presents the following features of digital broadcasting.
i. Digital broadcasting more roburt to noise compared with analog broadcast.
ii. Error, corrections techniques not possible with analog signals; but they are with digital
iii. Identical method of handling video, audio, data and control signals –all signal types can be handled in the same way.
iv. Large band compression of video and audio signals
v. High –performance date broadcasting
vi. Easy to scramble signals.
vii. Low transmission power –digital terrestrial television broadcasting can reach a particular services area for a transmission power of about 1/10 that of an equivalent analog broadcast.

Advantages of the Change
Digital television has many advantages over analog broadcasting there are many improvements that have come about due to digital broadcasting. Children now (2004:1) in Kombol (2008:1) states that, Digital television is a broadcasting technology that offers viewers sharper pictures and enhanced sound quality compared to existing analog television by transmitting large quantities of data in compact form, just like in personal computers, compact disc and the internet.
Adeniyi (2009) highlighted some advantages of digital technology over the analog.
1. T.V set under digital technology would perform like computers and telephone handsets by providing access to the internet and also store data apart from the main function of receiving audio and visual signals
2. switching –off of analogy terrestrial T.V could permit the release of several hundred megahertz (MHZ) in the VHT and UHF frequency spectrum band
3. DTV is a new way of transmitting high quality video and audio signals to viewers’ T.V set.
4. It support many different picture formats by the combination of size, aspect radio and interlacing.
5. digital channels take less bandwidth and more choice of service
6. Digital transmission enables higher fidelity more resistance to noise, and multipath channel than in analog.
7. Digital pictures and sound suffer less from interference and digital radio is hiss and cradle free.
8. There will be a wide range distribution of information and content can turn broadcasting media into an almost universal access platform.
9. The digital switch –over will also increase the number of T. V channels available to the population while a minimum o four programmes and four channels can be transmitted simultaneously from a station using the same bandwidth originally used for a single programme or channel in analog transmission.
10. Organization, business, institution and social group of all kind will have the opportunity to communicate their value or commercial offer to a wide variety of specific interest group.

Challenges for Broadcasters in a Digital Platform
Broadcasters will meet four major challenges in this journey to digital conversion: promotion of digital television, up grade, new licenses and multi channel availability. Igyor (2009:11) the broadcast industry and the governments must publicize, enlighten and create various ways to make the consumers know about the digital conversion. One of the reasons for the slow diffusion of the digital technology is some countries has been the lack of knowledge about the technology.
Digital Terrestrial Television (DTTV) delivery faces more difficult challenges as nearly all cable and satellite services now operate on a digital basis, which is not the case for free –to-air Digital Terrestrial (FTA DTTV) channels that must be transmitted in analogue format until consumers switch over to digital reception or by law when the analogue system is switch off.
The second challenge is the entrance of new players, which will precipitate a change in organization and strategies. The (DTV) industry has been shaped around complex vertically integrated structures, where proprietary systems prevail. Broadcasters are being forced to rethink their roles and business models, in a multiple–channel environment that is particularly imperative for broadcasters wishing to get access to the increasing number of viewers using non-terrestrial platforms.
Thirdly, a multiplication in the number of channels will boost demand for television programs and attractive content will become highly valued asset. Delivery cost will decease and no longer an issue, the problem no becomes a greater number of ret outlets competing for relatively scarce content. An increase in the number of competing channels would bring about a reduction in the size of the average audience for each program broadcast, as average audience members decline, the programming cost per audience member will increase and without a corresponding increase in advertising revenues, the average profit or television channels will be greatly reduced. These will be the immediate challenges the African broadcaster will have to deal with in additions to the new regulatory regime that might arise.

CONCLUSION
Conclusively, the analysis made from all these postulations show that, for every good thing to come by, there are also numerous challenge to bedevil the development. The arrival of digital broadcasting in this part of the continent also constitute threat to the old analog equipment by rendering some obsolete. The use of converter box and the low economic power of both some broadcast station and individuals to transit conveniently is a big problem. There is a new technology with a more efficient way of transmitting quality sound and pictures by turning them into computerized data. More so; the resulting implications or benefits of digital broadcasting over analogue include, the quality content production, good reception, possibilities of huge spectrum for broadcasting, access to internet, less bandwidth, quality signals, supporting different picture format and aspect ratio, robust to noise easy to scramble signals etc.

RECOMMENDATIONS
i. Nigerians should start embracing this technology so that it will not look like a fire brigade approach by 2012 which is the deadline for Nigerian transition to digital broadcasting.
ii. African governments should subsidies the price of the set –top-boxes to make the transition to digital less bother some to their citizen
iii. Concrete efforts must be made to bring every segment of the African society into DTTV policy.
iv. Massive public awareness campaigns for the digital switch transition, what the public needs to know and how to go about achieving the goals and objectives of the digital policy.
v. Governments through constituted agencies should prohibit the importation and or production of analogue television sets into their countries.
Thus as Nigeria seeks to join the rest of the world by migration from analogue to digital broadcast, the NBC would have to play a major role in providing the enabling environment to achieve the set objective come 2012.

REFERENCES

Adeniyi, O (2009) “Digital Broadcasting Migrating Implications and challenges for Nigeria” Retrieved from:http://www.technologytime.com/post/digital-broadcasting-migration-impications -and challenges -for-Nigeria.

Sennitt, A. (2008) Digital Television Transition Retrieved from htt://blogs.rnw.n//median network Nigeria. Minister –says-switch –to digital- broadcasting –is-imperative.

Oshodin D. (20009) Nigeria’s digital broadcast migration a mirage? Retrieved from http://www. Brand work Nigeria.com/nwewsdetail.php?1d=184.

Kombol, (2008) Digital Considerations in T. V Production Makurdi: switches and pluggz.

Ogah, I. A (2009) Digital broadcasting: Migrating implications and the challenges for Nigeria broadcast stations. A paper presented in the Department of mass communication Benue State university Makurdi.

Igyor, G. A (20009) Digitization and the challenges of broadcasting. Lecture notes in Millersville university of Pennsylvania Millersville, PA 17552.

Anaeot, S.G, Onabajo, O.S and Osifeso, J. B (2008), models and theories of communication: Bowie –African renaissance book incorporated.

Tanner, G (1998) Digital broadcasting-the wedge Widens. ABA General Manager at the Communications Research from, 24-25 September 1998.

DIGITAL TELEVISION TRANSITION IN NIGERIA: THE JOURNEY THUS FAR

A SEMINAR PRESENTED

BY: AGBANA OLUBUNMI FUNMILAYO
BSU/SS/M.Sc/09/4588

TO THE DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATON, BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI.

IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE COURSE BROADCAST SEMINAR, COM 702.

LECTURER: DR. MIKE KOMBOL.

NOVEMBER 2010.

ABSRACT
‘The world has gone digital’. This statement is now a cliché especially in developed economies. Digitalization even in these developed economies came to be with so many challenges with it. Some of these challenges have been surmounted while some others are yet to be surmounted. This paper, ‘Digital Television Transition in Nigeria: the journey thus far’, reviewing related literature identifies many challenges involved in the digitization process and the preparation DTV transition in Nigeria. A move slated to take place at the close of 2012 in Nigeria. The work discovered that the Nigerian government has its hand on the deck, and is getting ready for the transition. However challenges like poverty, lack of capable personnel and so on are some of the militating factors. Conclusions were made and some recommendations made to include an appeal to government not to relent in their supportive efforts at realizing the goal.

BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The word “Television” was first used in1900, then followed early experiments with a mechanical scanning disc system between 1922 and 1927. Television pictures produced during that time was neon, orange and very small. First Mechanical television sets were sold to public between 1928 and 1934.At the peak, 42 US stations were in operation using the Jenkins system. However, picture quality was lacking therefore not suitable for commercial use. Electronic television offered greater promise. The All-Electronic Cathode Ray Television (the basic system we have today) was experimented with between 1926 and 1935 and was discovered to be more useful than the Jenkins system. Between 1935 and 1941, electronic (experimental) television began broadcasting in Germany, England, Italy, France, USA, Holland, and many other European countries. With the victory television thus far, the desire to improve television production led to experiments on the colored television in the early 1940s. The first mechanical colored television was placed in the market on June 25, 195. But this did not last because the mechanical television soon faded out in October the same year. Experiments were intensified and in May 1954, the first all-electronic color television set was soled that is the RCA CT-100.
In 1987 Japanese demonstrated research and experiments in 1987 ANALOG high-definition TV system (called MUSE) and in 1990 General Instrument’s Video Cipher division announced the DIGITAL Hi-Definition System. This served as a forerunner to the internet World Wide Web of the 1990’s which ushered in new global communication systems for the 21st century.
Television broadcasting in Nigeria started with the initiative of the first Western Region Premier, Chief Obafemi Awolowo who on October 31, 1959 launched television broadcasting at Ibadan the headquarters of the region. The western Region Government went into partnership with the Overseas Rediffusion Limited. The western Nigeria Radiovision Service Limited was created with the responsibility of radio and television broadcasting under one management. A small transmitter of 500 watts power was mounted on Mapo Hill in Ibadan and another at Abafon near Ikorodu. The television was therefore established to disseminate information and entertain viewers. The radio and TV stations in the Western Region pioneered commercial broadcasting in Nigeria to supplement government subvention. In 1962, the Western region government took full control of the WNBS/WNTV by buying over all the shares held by the Overseas Rediffusion Ltd. In the same year, the Nigeria television Service was born in Lagos with the radio corporation of America (RCA) and the national broadcasting company international limited managing the station. But the management was eventually handed over to Reverend Victor Badejo, who was then the acting Director General of the NBC. The NTS later changed its name to NBC/TV. The Federal Military Government of Nigeria under General Olusegun Obasanjo (as he then was) took over the television stations in Nigeria in 1978 and changed its name to Nigeria television authority (NTA).Since then, television in Nigeria has grown leaps and bounds.
Generally, television broadcasts have advanced from the analogue broadcasts to the digital broadcastings where by television broadcasts are done digitally. This is known as the Digital television (DTV). The basic differences between digital broadcasts and analogue broadcasts, according to Kombol (2008, p. 14) is in the transmission of signals. The UK Cabinet Office (2003, p. 6), cited in Kombol (2008, p. 14), states that the signal for digital transmissions on television occur in four (4) different ways. They are:

a. Cable.
b. Satellite
c. Digital terrestrial television
d. Telephone connection (DSL).

Cable can be referred to as a system of television reception in which signals from distant stations are picked up by a master antenna and sent by cable (wires) to the individual receivers of paying subscribers, (Merriam Webster’s dictionary). Kombol (2008, p. 14), points out that that cable has the capacity to transmit about 200 digital television channels to viewers at home. A satellite is a celestial body orbiting another of larger size. Satellites provide a one digital transmission service and have a capacity for hundreds of channels. Kombol (2008, p. 15).A digital terrestrial television broadcast is a land based transmitter network where signals are broadcast and received an antenna. The telephone connection also known as the (DSL) is a situation where telephone service bandwidths are increased to convey television signals.
The DTV transition is the switch from analog to digital broadcast television. In 1996, the U.S. Congress authorized the distribution of an additional broadcast channel to each broadcast TV station so that they could start a digital broadcast channel while simultaneously continuing their analog broadcast channel. Later, Congress set June 12, 2009 as the deadline for full power television stations to stop broadcasting analog signals. Since June 13, 2009, all full-power U.S. television stations have broadcast over-the-air signals in digital only. In the U.S. today, full-power television stations have stopped broadcasting in analog format, and now transmit only in digital. Consumers who subscribe to pay television services (for example: cable, satellite) continue to receive broadcast (“over the air”) television programs through these subscription services. Consumers who do not have subscription television services and are not receiving digital signals have two choices: (1) they can purchase a digital television (either a stand alone digital television or separate digital tuner set-top box) or (2) they can acquire a digital-to-analog converter box for each of their analog TVs to continue receiving free over-the-air digital television programming. The converter box converts the over-the-air digital signals into signals that analog TV sets can receive and display.
In Nigeria, the DTV transition has been earmarked to take place in 2012. Jimoh (2008) notes that;
‘The Federal Government of Nigeria has set June 17 and later December 31, 2012 as switchover date for the transition of analogue to Digital Television Broadcasting, three years ahead of the International Telephone Union’s (ITU), of which Nigeria is a member and signatory, deadline of 2015 (UHF) and 2020 (VHF) for full transition worldwide.’

To reach the set goal the Nigerian Government has mandated the office of the President through the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to put the Nigerian Broadcasting in order and get it set for this transition move. How far, so far? Is a question that will come to mind when this issue is raised.

STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
The Nigerian broadcast industry has received a set goal to beat the 2012 transition target. All hands in the NBC are on deck to ensure that this dream is realized. The broadcast houses in Nigeria are also preparing and working hard to realize this dream.
Knowing that 2012 is just around the corner, what is the NBC doing, or what have they done so far towards realizing this dream? This is the lacuna that this work seeks to breach.

RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The questions this research work seeks to answer are as follows:
a. What has the Nigerian broadcast media done so far in the quest for realizing the 2012 DTV transition goal?
b. What challenges have they encountered so far and what other challenges lie on the way of realizing this goal?
c. What is the way forward?

THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
This work is anchored on Max Weber’s Modernization theory and is backed up by the Canadian Scholar, Marshall Mc Luhan’s Technological determinism theory.
Max Weber in this theory holds that modernity process through the institutionalization of rationality results in social specialization, (Anaeto, Onabajo and Osifeso, 2008, p.179). Change is thus a very necessary element in modernization. This theory recognizes that this change also referred to as progress takes place naturally. Postulated in 1953 by Professor Marshal Mc Luhan, the technological determinism theory holds that that changes in the way humans communicate is what shapes existence; Mc Luhan here feels that culture is molded by the way we are able to communicate. To explain this, Forid (2000) notes two points that must be comprehended. That;
(a) Invention in communication technology cause cultural changes.
(b) Changes in the modes of communication changes human life.
This goes to show the relevance of these theories to this discussion. Invention in communication technology has caused change in the way of life Nigerians so much that instead of the traditional communal living, the individualistic living associated with the industrialized communities have taken over the nation with people deriving satisfaction from technology instead of the feudal relationship associated with communal living. Living has grown to become much more different from what used to be and this is not the end of the road change is still coming, so says the modernization theory.

REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Literature to be reviewed in this work will be discussing the concept of Digital Television (DTV), the DTV transition process and the steps put in place in Nigeria to achieve the transition goal, the challenges of transition in Nigeria and other developing countries,

THE CONCEPT OF DIGITAL TELEVISION
Digital Television (DTV) is an advanced broadcasting technology that involves the use of air waves like the computer. Digital television uses technology that records, transmits, and decodes a signal in digital form—that is, as a series of ones and zeros. This process produces much clearer picture and sound quality than analog systems, similar to the difference between a compact disc recording (using digital technology) and an audiotape or long-playing record. It also permits additional features to be embedded in signals including program and consumer information as well as interactivities. Early digital equipment included digital television receivers that converted analog signals into digital code. The analog signal was first sampled and stored as a digital code, then processed, and finally retrieved. Digital tuners designed to decode purely digital signals are now standard on new televisions, (Encarta 2009). According to Kombol, 2008, p.1, in digital broadcasts,
‘The DTV receiver processes the picture and sound information of the broadcasts in much the same way as the computer process data. The television reads the patterns of 1s and 0s and converts them into whatever image or sound those particular patterns represent. The digital signal is subject to less outside interference, so you get clearer, crisper images and sound. The digital signals can be compressed to carry far more information using the same amount of broadcast bandwidth as an existing analog signal.’

DTV has transformed the television viewing experience. It enables broadcasters to offer television with better picture and sound quality. It also offers multiple programming choices, called multicasting and interactive capabilities.

DIGITAL TELEVISION TRANSITION
The switch from analog to digital broadcast television is referred to as the DTV Transition. In 1996, the U.S. Congress authorized the distribution of an additional broadcast channel to each broadcast TV station so that they could start a digital broadcast channel while simultaneously continuing their analog broadcast channel. Later, Congress set June 12, 2009 as the deadline for full power television stations to stop broadcasting analog signals. Since June 13, 2009, all full-power U.S. television stations have broadcast over-the-air signals in digital only. In Nigeria, the transition process has been earmarked to be concluded in 2012.
To beat the 2012 target, a number of things have been done some of which include, the inauguration of a stake holders committee to look closely into this move and how it will be relevant to the Nigerian society. To further set measures in motion for the realization of the project, the Federal Government has set up a Presidential Advisory Committee on Transition (PAC), from Analogue to Digital Broadcasting in Nigeria. PAC, which was inaugurated on 13th October, 2008 by the then, Hon Minister of Information and Communications, Mr John Ogar Odey, has the following Terms of Reference.

1. Recommend a policy on digital terrestrial broadcast transition using global best practices.
2. Recommend appropriate regulatory framework.
3. Recommend a National Broadcasting Model.
4. Assess impact of digitization on the consumers and recommend possible government intervention.
5. Determine the quantum of expected digital dividend.
6. Assess environmental impact of digitization, if any, and recommend steps to be taken.
7. Advice Government on any action relevant to smooth transition in Nigeria.

Further, the Federal Executive Council in Nigeria, aware that the broadcast regulator, the NBC has steered the sector towards the preliminary stages of digitization have given some more support to the NBC to facilitate their work. So far, all non-terrestrial broadcasters have already gone digital, and many production and studio equipment of broadcast stations in this country are all in the digital format, for instance, the Nigerian Television Authority, (NTA) has recently launched its digital terrestrial multi-channel station, a positive step in the digitization of programmes.
Recognizing the fact that digitization in the broadcast sector is best driven by policy; Government is preparing to present a bill to the National Assembly for a law that will provide the legal framework for the transition. It will deal with the basic issues of the signal distribution system, the licensing framework, spectrum planning, broadcast standards, training, Set Top boxes and such other relevant issues that will make the transition smooth and meaningful.

Some of the importance of the DTV transition especially to the Nigerian society includes;

a. It frees up parts of the valuable broadcast spectrum for public safety communications (such as police, fire departments, and rescue squads etc). Also, some of the spectrum can now be auctioned to companies that will be able to provide consumers with more advanced wireless services (such as wireless broadband, internet services, etc).

b. it enhances consumers benefit because digital broadcasting allows stations to offer improved picture and sound quality, and digital is much more efficient than analog. For example, rather than being limited to providing one analog program, a broadcaster is able to offer a super sharp High Definition (HD) digital program or multiple Standard Definition (SD) digital programs simultaneously through a process called “multicasting.”

c. Multicasting allows broadcast stations to offer several channels of digital programming at the same time, using the same amount of spectrum required for one analog program. So, for example, while a station broadcasting in analog on channel 7 is only able to offer viewers one program, a station broadcasting in digital on channel 7 can offer viewers one digital program on channel 7-1, a second digital program on channel 7-2, a third digital program on channel 7-3, and so on. This means more programming choices for viewers.

d. DTV provides interactive video and data services that were not possible with analog technology.

CHALLENGES OF THE DTV TRANSITION IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES AND NIGERIA
Innovations come with challenges which must be surmounted to achieve success. Some of the impending challenges of the DTV transition in Nigeria and other developing countries include;

POVERTY
It costs so much to join the train of digitization. Beginning from the general level, say the government, there contribution to the success of the venture must be very significant for the individuals to be able to participate. Television that is the analog televisions in many parts of these nations today are luxuries so many cannot afford. Then they here comes the need for type of television which is more expensive than the conventional analog one. The question is how they will afford a more expensive one when in deed they have not bought the cheap ones.
Though it has been noted that an analog television set use additional equipment – a digital-to-analog converter box – to receive over-the-air television, because analog sets equipped with a converter box will display the digital broadcasts, though not in full digital quality, what guarantee is it members of the society in developing countries can afford these converters. Another option available to users of the analog television is to connect to a subscription service such as cable or a satellite television, what guarantees the funds for regular renewal of subscription fees? Therefore poverty among citizens of developing countries ensures that they do not get sets that efficiently receive digital broadcast signals if they can even afford the analog ones.

LACK OF TRAINED HUMAN RESOURCES
The digitization of broadcasting will definitely render ‘un-trainable’ analog technical crew redundant. In developing countries the out come will be strongly contended with because rendering such people redundant means throwing them out of their jobs and keeping them on the job especially when they are not trainable means not achieving the digitization goal. What then can be done? More also is the fact that a new set of staff knowledgeable in the digitization equipment will have to be employed, how can they be gotten at affordable costs? A lot of all these technical questions must be answered to ensure functionality of necessary man power.

THE NEED TO INCREASE AWARENESS ABOUT DIGITAL BROADCASTING
The novelty of digital broadcasting necessitates an aggressive publicity for the venture. There is this urgent need to create loud and un-ignorable awareness for digital broadcasting if it must be widely accepted. The level of awareness in developing countries is very low, not just among the general public but also among media personnel. Their ignorance makes even professionals complacent and satisfied with analog broadcasting. Creating this awareness we are talking about is not a cheap venture.

Other challenges facing digitization in Nigeria and other developing countries include;
a. Lack of commitment to the digitization venture by governments.
b. The economic power of all broadcast stations to transit to digital before 2012 is a big treat, seeing that millions of naira is involved in this transition.
c. The adoption of a broadcast standard incompatible with existing analog receiver has created the problem of large numbers of analog receivers being discarded during digital transition in the US where an estimate of 99 million unused analog television receivers are currently in the storage. Same is bound to happen in other countries yet to move. What happens to these televisions, knowing that they can cause an environmental threat if not disposed of properly?

RELATED EMPIRICAL STUDIES
A related empirical research titled: Digital Broadcasting: Migrating Implications and the Challenges for Nigeria Broadcast stations done by Ogah, I. A. (2009), where he sought to know the implications of the digital transition to the Nigerian society, he found out primarily that:
‘The arrival of digital broadcasting in this part of the continent also constitutes a threat to the old analog equipment by rendering them obsolete. The use the converter box and the low economic power of both some broadcast stations and individuals to transit conveniently is a problem….’
He employed the content analysis research design and concluded that the government through the NBC should play the support role to the members of the public who may not be fully aware of this change, or may not be able to afford it.

CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
No innovation comes with out its challenges. The way the challenges are handled goes a long way to determine the success of such an innovation. This situation is not different; challenges have been identified to impede the success of the DTV transition in Nigeria. These challenges can make or mar the transition exercise if not managed properly. To this effect the following recommendations are made:

a. The Nigerian government should hasten the move to institute a back-up policy for the transition move.
b. Sensitization programmes should be intensified to create better awareness for members of the society, so that they also can get themselves prepared for the move.
c. Support should be given to broadcast stations in ways of subventions and so on, to enable them meet the 2012 deadline.
d. All up coming stations should be properly examined before licenses are issued. All of such stations must be digitalized and not equipped with analog equipments.

REFERENCEES
Abbas Jimoh, (2008). Nigeria: Digitization Transition from Analog Pains to Digital Gains. A publication of Daily Trust 10th August, 2008. http://www.allafrica.com. 21st November, 2010.

Anaeto S. Onobajo O. and Osifeso J. (2008), Models and Theories of Mass Communication. Lagos: ARBI.
Forid G. (2000) in http://www.allsands.com. 17th May, 2010.

Microsoft ® Encarta ® 2009. © 1993-2008 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.

Kombol, M. (2008). Digital Considerations in Television Production.Makurdi: Switches and Pluggz.

Tranner, G. (1998). Digital Broadcasting- The Wedge Widens. A paper presented at the Communication Research Forum, Australia, September, 1998.

OPENING SPEECH BY THE GUEST OF HONOUR, HIS EXCELLENCY, PRESIDENT GOODLUCK E. JONATHAN, GCFR, AT THE OPENING CEREMONY OF AFRICAST 2010, HELD AT THE ABUJA SHERATON HOTEL, ON TUESDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2010.

“DTV” IS COMING
(AND SOONER THAN YOU THINK!) http://www.dtv.com

BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI
POST-GRADUATE SCHOOL

DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATION

COM 702, SEMINAR IN BROADCAST JOURNALISM

QUESTION:
ANALOGUE TO DIGITAL BROADCASTING, WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES AND IMPLICATIONS.

BY

NAME: ALUECHIA, VINCENT KEREKAR
BSU/SS/M.SC./09/4593

LECTURER:
DR. KOMBOL .M.A

Abstract:
The improvement of technology in the society has made it possible that analogue technological system of broadcasting is trying to find its way out of the broadcasting industry. The ushering in of digitization in the broadcasting industry has demonstrated clearly that analogue has no place in the broadcast industry. This paper examined the implication of digital broadcasting station. The paper also looked at digital broadcasting as the practice of using digital data rather than analogue waveform to carry broadcast signals. Three research questions are raised to give the paper direction. The paper adopted content analysis of related text, articles and internet materials to arrive at findings. The paper is anchored on the theory of diffusion and technological determinism which stress the development of technology with the diffusion of communication. It also distinguished analogue from digital broadcasting. It looked at the modalities of transition from analogue to digital. The conclusion of the paper is that there must be a starting point. Thus Nigeria through NBC should provide a conducive environment for this transition.

Introduction
Precisely on the 3rd June, 2008 in Abuja, Digitalization Programme commenced in Nigeria after the meeting of stakeholders in the broadcast industry where forum underscored the necessity for Nigeria to embrace the new technology, so that the country would not be turned into a dumping ground for obsolete analogue equipment.
The plan mapped out for switch over date from current digital terrestrial broadcasting in Nigeria is 17th June 2012. It is about two years before now. June 17th, 2015 is the deadline for the entire world set by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) after its congress in Geneva, Switzerland in 2006.
The country officially started the digitalization of its broadcast industry in December 2007 after President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s consent, directing the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), the industry’s regulation to set in motion and pilot the programme towards the target date. (Adeniyi 2009).
The implication of this is that all the broadcast station in Nigeria radio or television be it public or privately owned will be on the match to transient indisputably from analog broadcasting. A digital broadcasting on or before 17th June 2012. This exodus from analog to digital broadcasting is based on the overwhelming benefits of digital broadcasting over the analog. Indeed, this has brought a lot of challenges to broadcast industry both from the financial aspect to purchase this digital equipment and the knowledge of the technology on how to manipulate them. In a paper presented in Millersville University of Pennsylvania 2009, Prof. Gerard Igyor put it that, “This historic technology shift will result in all the present television station on the continent to vacate the analogue airwaves;” The industry standard since the introduction of television in 1959.
One may ask, what digital broadcast is all about;
Digital broadcasting is the practice of using digital data rather than analog waveforms to carry broadcasting over television channel or assigned ration frequency boards.
Digital links use data compressions which generally have mere efficient bandwidth usage than analogue links which allows a content provider more room to provide services, or to produce a higher quality signed that had been previously available with the analog technique.
Digital links (DTS) allows stations to offer a number of new and better services. It also provide a dramatically better picture and sound quality in television and enable television stations to provide several channels of programming at once. This is known as multicasting. Like in digital television it can be also used to provide data services that are not possible with analog technology.
Kombur M.A. (2008)04) points out nine strong benefit of digital broadcasting which include
Frees up space for essential services enhanced picture and sound quality interactive television.
Free up space for other essential services
Multicasting
Datacasting
Multi options for signal reception
Internet Access
Secure Payment System
In addition, there are inherent problems with A.M. and F.M. F.M. in particular is prone to multipath interference and the need to constantly return the radio because of problem of signal.
A.M. by contrast, doesn’t suffer with multipath but when going under bridge or in tunnels, reception is absent. A.M. also (as well as L.W. and S.W.) is also prone to conditions on the sun. Thus, because of these problems and the need to correct these anomalies, the world is trying to change her technology, and most broadcasters have started switching over unto the digital techniques.

Statement of the Problem
Analogue techniques of broadcasting have been in existence over the years. The analogue techniques of broadcasting has contributed its own quota to the development of broadcasting industry, with the incept of the digital technology, which the society agreed to be the solution to the problems inherent in the analogue system, there is every possible need to correct those anomalies and as well get things done the right way by migrating from those stone age ways to a more favourable one.
In that regard this paper seeks to find out those implications as well as the benefits of the digital technique over the analogue and the challenges this transition is posing to the broadcast industry across the world.

Research Questions
The following questions hypothetical questions were raised to give this research paper a direction. They include;
(i) What are the benefits or implications of digital techniques of broadcasting over analogue.
(ii) What are the challenges in the transition from analog to digital technique affecting broadcast industry in Nigeria.
(iii) Is Nigeria technology ripe enough to embrace the world system of digital broadcasting technology?

Research Methodology
The method adopted in this paper is content analysis which data generated for the study is mainly from the review of related works as they contained in books, articles, presentation of seminar papers and down loaded papers from internet.
Theoretical Framework
Diffusion and Technological Determinism Theory. This paper is anchored on the theory of diffusion and technological determinism. This theory was propounded in 1986 by Everret Roger. The theory proposition involves using communication to transfer technological innovation from development agencies to their client so as to create an appetite for change through raising a climate for modernization among members of the public.
In another way is the critical role for technology in the employment of mass communication for development.
The assumption in this paper which include
(a) View shares the conviction that the development and application of technology can resolve all varied problems of mankind (The ones that are physical).
(b) That technology is the proponent factor for development
(c) That technology is an inexorable Irresistible and overwhelming force, which is a message in its own right Anaeto et al 2008:178-179
Diffusion and technological determinism theory is used based on the fact that technology according to the theory is a message and an answer to all human physical need. Since technological innovations can imbibe development through the diffusion of the message it carries, then there is no doubt that digital broadcasting is the answer to all broadcasting problems associated with the analogue.

Empirical Study
Transition from Analogue to Digital
Terrestrial broadcasting in Nigeria
Kombol (2008) asserts that, many countries of the world have recognized the huge benefits which digital broadcasting offers and are making huge effort to shift from analogue broadcasting to digital broadcasting. Adeniyi (2009) maintain that, the international telecommunication union’s position on migration was informed by the developments in telecommunication technologies which enable a more efficient use of radio frequency spectrum and improved quality picture and audio. Before everyone relied on radio spectrum for TV transmission but this had inherent restriction posed by the analog transmission. Analog transmission were found to be subject to interference, forcing the regulatory bodies to leave space between channel and only allocate a small percentage of available spectrums for transmission to ensure high quality transmission and reception through the regions serviced.
With these disadvantages which has been surpassed with the arrival of digitization which gives better clarity and quality of signal and spectrum efficiency. Digital television signals in particular are clearer and stronger in their audio and video output.
As digital technology has opened a world of possibilities for broadcasting, a large spectrum will be available for radio and television broadcast in the country. As a result, more frequencies or wavelengths will be available for television stations in the country. It will also effort the industry opportunities for interactive broadcasting as television sets would now do much more than receive broadcast signals. Nigerians that do not want to be left behind in the new technological development have two options. The first is for them to buy a digital-compliant television set to enable then enjoy the benefits of the new technology. The second is that even with the analog system, one can set “Set-Top-box” which is a digital analog signal converter. It is like the ordinary decoder that easily plugs into a television set to which will allow you to continue to get your programme signals.

Definition of terms
Transition: The process of changing from one thing to another
Digital: Producing of something that can be stored in computer and displayed on screen.
Broadcast: showing information by means of a dial.
Review of Related Literature
Analog and Digital Broadcasting:
The dramatic change in television and radio signals coming up, there is need one should understand the differences between some of the technological terms. Analog means using of continuous range of physical qualities (say-weight, length, volume etc) to represent numbers. (Crowder et al 1995:38) Carpesomedian (2009) asserts that analog television is considered over the air programming, this means you need to use an antenna to receive a signal or you use a cable connected to an antenna outside your home to pick up that signal. When you do not have a cable provided and you just plug T.V. into wall, this is considered-over the air broadcast.
On the other hand, digital broadcasting is a way of transmitting over airwaves like a computer. Kombul (2008:1). The waves in digital broadcasting are encoded to ensure enhanced picture and sound quality. Kombul maintained that due to the nature of the airwaves used to transmit in digital broadcasting, the picture and sound quality are greatly enhanced. In that regard the audience has a wide variety of programmes to choose from.
Digital TV signals are received by aerial satellite or cable but have to be decoded by a set-top-box or an integrated TV digital radio signals are received by radios that use Digital Audio Broadcasting System often called (DAB) but now referred to as digital radio.

Nigerian transmission from Analogue to Digital Broadcasting
The National Broadcasting Commission recognizes Digitization, the convention of the broadcast and communication system from analog to digital, as an important global movement driven by the International Telecommunication union (ITU), that will revolutionize broadcast as we know “it” Digitization both improves the quality of reception and ensures a more efficient use of the spectrum, which is a scarce and finite natural resource belonging to all Nigerian and held in trusting licensees.
Sennitt (2008) has it that the transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting will affect all segments in the broadcasting value chain namely: content production, transmission and reception as all will require technical upgrading to support digital broadcast.
In November 2007, the N.B.C briefed the 38th National Council on Information and Communication in Jos on the imperatives of Digitalization and Urgent need for the nation to take advantage of this inevitable global phenomenon, thus in December 2007, President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua approved that the Commission should set in motion and pilot Nigeria’s digitization programme towards the target date of June 17, 2012. Meanwhile the commission in a forward looking manner has encouraged cable (MMDs) and DTH Operators to digitize their operations. All those operating in Nigeria are now making move of transmitting digital signals. Gradually, all other broadcast stations are on their march to this transformation.

Benefit of the Change
Kombol 2008 and Adeniyi highlighted the following benefits of digital broadcasting technology as follows:
(i) Under digital technology T.V. Set perform like computer and telephone and handset by providing internet services and store data part from its main function.
(ii) Switching to digital terrestrial T.V. could permit the release of several hundred megahertz (MHz) in the VHT and UHF Frequency spectrum band.
(iii) Is a new way of transmitting high quality and audio signals.
(iv) Free up space for other essential services.
(v) A wide range distribution of information and content can turn broadcast industry into an almost universal access platform.
(vi) Organization, business, institution and social group of all kind will have the opportunity to communicate their values or commercial offer to a wide variety of specific interest group.
(vii) It support many different picture formats by the combination of size, aspect radio and interlacing.
(viii) Digital channels take less bandwidth and more choice of services.
(ix) Digital transmission enable higher fidelity more resistance to noise and multipath channel than in analog
(x) No interference and digital radio is hiss and cradle free.

Digital Broadcasting Features
Ayamada (2003) add that digital broadcasting is more robust to noise compared to analog.
(ii) There is error correction technique in digital than in analog
(iii) Identical method of handling video audio, data and control signals-all signal types can be handled in the same way.
(iv) Lard band compression of video and audio signals.
(v) High-performance data broadcasting
(vi) East to scramble signals
(vii) Low transmission power-Digital terrestrial television broadcasting can reach a particular service area for a transmission power of about 1/10 that of an equivalent analog broadcast.

The Challenges of Digital Broadcasting
Due to Nigerian low level of technological advancement, we are bound to face the following challenges despite the numerous benefits.
(i) Using antenna, viewers are limited to channels the antenna picks up and the signal quality will also vary.
(ii) Digital television must not interfere with each other, and they must also coexist with analog TV until it is phase out.
(iii) Analog switch-off would render a non-digital television obsolete, unless it is connected to an external converter box for digital signal.
(iv) The adoption of a broadcast standard incompatible with existing analog receiver as created the problem of large numbers of analog receivers being discarded during digital transition in the US where an estimate of 99 million unused analog T.V. receivers are currently in the storage. Something is bound to happen in Nigeria.
(v) The economic power of all broadcast station to transit to digital before 2012 is a big threat. Seeing that millions of naira is involved in this transition.

Conclusion and Recommendation
In conclusion, I discovered that in achieving good work you must spend as there is a popular adage that “Better soup na money”.
There is a new technology more efficiently to transmitting quality sound and picture by turning them into computerized data.
The implication of benefit of digital broadcasting include quality content production, good reception, possibilities of huge spectrum for broadcasting assess to internet less bandwidth quality signals supporting different picture format and aspect ratio, robust to noise easy to scramble signals etc.
With digital broadcasting in our system also constitute threat to the old analog equipment by rendering some obsolete. The use of converter box and the low economic power of both some broadcast station and individual to transit conveniently is a big problem.
Recommendation
Based on the above findings, one would agree that digital broadcasting is a solution to analog problem. Nigerians should start embracing this technology so that it will not look like we will not meet the data line of 2012 which is a data for Nigerian transition to digital broadcasting.
As Nigeria seeks to join the rest of the world by moving from analog to digital broadcast, the NMB would have a major role in providing the enabling environment to achieve the set objective in 2012.

References:

Adeniyi (2009) “Digital Broadcasting Migrating implications and Challenges for Nigeria” from http://wwwTechnologytime.com./post/digital-broadcasting-Migration. Implication and challenges-for-Nigeria.

Anaeot, S.G, Onabanjo, O.S. and Osifeso J.B. (2008) Models and theories of Communication: Bowie, African Renaissance Book incorporated.

Carpesomediem C (2009) “Analogue vs Digital TV” From http://hub pages. Com/hub/broadcast-signal overviews.

Sennitt, A (2008) Digital Television Transition from htt://blogs.rnw.n mechannet work/Nigeria-minister-says-switch-to digital- broadcasting-is-imeperative.

Kombol, M.A. (2008) Digital Considerations in T.V. Production, switches and plugs, Makurdi.

Igyor, G.A. (2009) Unpublished Millersville University of Pennsylvania, Millersville.

SCHOOL OF POSTGRADUATE STUDY
BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI

TOPIC:
DIGITAL TELEVISION TRANSITION PROBLEM AND PROSPECT

ASSIGNMENT ON COM 702: BROADCAST JOURNALISM SEMINAR

COURSE LECTURER:
M.A. KOMBOL (Ph.D)

SUBMITTED BY
ADEPOJU .M. ADEBAYO

NOVEMBER, 2010

ABSTRACT

Digital Television Transition represented a paradigm shift industry the world over. Especially, in the United State and other European countries, where television broadcast is nearing a dramatic change. broadcasters are beginning to disseminate their messages via digital transmission while digital television (DTV) provide many enhancements over analog television. Associated problem together with what future hold for this all important television innovation is what the study set out to do.

INTRODUCTION
Mass communication has always required technology to broaden its reach and expand its influence. From the primitive to the modern societies, the story of mass communication has been that of changes wrought by improvements in technology. The development of printing was a key turning point by producing information or communication meant for mass audiences. But each incremental progress that followed through technological advancement whether in printing, telecommunication, wireless communication, photography or broadcasting, were additional boost to the reach and effectiveness of mass communication.
In the early years of television in Nigeria, most programmes were run live as video tape recording technology had then not become widely available. However, there was a process for adapting films on celluloid for television which enable stations to run newsreels and advertisements originally meant for the cinema.
But by the 1970s television stations in Nigeria had begun to acquire Eng (electronic News Gatherer) such as Camera, which were light, less bulky and rugged which made it easy for reporters and camera men to go out for news events, which were recorded edited with he new video editing equipment and broadcast same day on the news. These new television cameras and editing equipment as helped improve programming significantly, as a greater majority of programmes could now be shot, edited and presented more professionally than was previously possible.
However, today, the Digital Television transition, sweeping technological advancement in the area of T.V broadcast is creating a new order in which television transmitted and programming is done.
STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Digital television is a new and exciting innovation that will enhance both the television industry and the consumers’ way of receiving information. Despite the identifiable prospect, there are also other constraints inherent in the technology. These variable from the synopsis of the study.

RESEARCH QUESTION
How has digital television contributed to improve television broadcast/programming
What are the strength, the constrain of Digital Television technology.
DEFINITION OF TERMS
Digital: An innovative technology as distinguished from analogues system. Oxford advanced learner’s dictionary defined digital computer as one that perform operations by representing quantities as binary or decimal.
Television: The word Television was first coined by a Frenchman named Persky. It is a hybrid of a name made up of Greek “Tele” meaning “at a distance” and the Latin “vidre” meaning “to see” Oxford Advanced Learner Dictionary Define Television as; process of transmitting a view of event, plays etc apparatus for receiving and showing this transmission.
Transition: This refers to change from one condition or set of circumstance to another.
Problem: These are set of constraint, hindrances and unfavourbale and limiting circumstances. Oxford Advanced learner define problem as question to be solved.
Prospect – Future, proposition, expected or hoped for looked forward to. It is also defined as an idea based on imagination.

LITERATURE REVIEW
Review of Past Literature
Digital television transition problem and prospect
Digital Television (DTV) is an advanced broadcasting technology that has transformed viewers television viewing experience. It has enable broadcaster to offer television with better picture and sound quality. DTV has also offers multiple programming choices, called multicasting and interactive capabilities.
In 1996, the US congress authorized the distribution of an additional broadcast channel to each broadcast T.V. station so that they could start a digital broadcast channel while simultaneously continuing their analog broadcast channel.
Later, congress set June 12, 2009 as the deadline for full power television station to stop broadcasting analog signals. Since June 13, 2009, all full-power U.S. television stations have broadcast over the air, signals in digital only.
PROSPECT
On important benefit of the switch to all digital broadcasting is that, it freed up parts of the valuable broadcast spectrum for public distress call, fire department and rescue squads. Also, some of the spectrum can now be auctioned to companies that will be able to provide consumers with more advanced wireless services (wireless broadband).
It is of additional benefit to consumer because digital broadcasting allows stations to offer improved picture and sound quality, and digital is much more efficient than analog. For example, rather than being limited to provide one analog programme, a broadcaster is able to offer a super sharp High Definition (HD) digital programme or multiple standard Definition (SD) digital programmes simultaneously through a process called “multicasting”.
Multicasting allows broadcast stations to offer several channels of digital programming at the same time, using the same amount of spectrum required for one analogy programme.
So, for example, while a station broadcasting in analog on chennel 7 is only able to offer viewers one programme, a station broadcasting in digital on channel 7 can offer viewers one digital programme on channel 7-1 a second digital programme on channel 7-2, a third digital programme channel 7-3 etc. This mean more programming choices for viewers. Digital television provides interactive video and data services that were not possible with analog technology.
In America the data for final transition to digital was set to June 12, 2009. From June 13, 2009, all full-power U.S. stations have broadcast digital signals only. The system enables the consumer to connection inexpensive receiver (digital to analog converter box) to their existing analog T.V. In order to be able to decode DTV broadcast signals.
Digital to analog converter boxes does not necessarily convert your analog TV. To High Definition HD. Analog T.V. sets will continue to work with cable, satellite, VCR, DVD players, camcorders, video game consoles and other devices for many years. It must however be noted that, Digital cable or digital satellite does not mean a programme is high definition.
Components/features of DTV include:
Multicasting – (Expand programming choice)
High Definition Television
Data streaming
High definition broadcast
Best available picture resolution, clarity and colour etc
To be connected to DTV signals, a viewer is required to posses either of the following viz: A T.V. set with a digital turner or an analog T.V. set connected to a digital to analog converter box. In either case, the viewer would need an appropriate antenna connected to the T.V. set or the converter box; either to an outdoor rooftop antenna or an indoor antenna i.e. “Rabit ears” for VHF reception and a loop or bowtie for UHF reception. However, a digital T.V. set would require no additional devices as mentioned above (antenna) in order to receive over the air digital broadcast programming.
On the other hand, Digital Cable Ready (DCR) or plug and play T.V. sets are also available. These can be used to receive digital cable T.V. at other time High Definition over cable with out a separate set top box. In this case, a cable card is needed to watch certain cable programming. These sets do not work directly with satellite as you are required to have a set of top box to view satellite programming. One important minus for the use of converter box with analog TV set is that, though it enable the viewer to receive over the air television signal, but not in full digital quality.
Other associated problems with digital television tradition include, DTV reception can be affected by terrain trees, building, the weather, damaged equipment, as well as antenna type, location and orientation.
THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
This work is theoretically analyzed using the diffusion of innovation theory by Everett M. Rogers. The study seeks to explain some phenomenon associated with Digital innovative in T.V. broadcast. The theory aid the study which look at how and why of the television adoption of digitalized system.
RELATED EMPIRICAL STUDY
James W. Cotada an American Social Scientist once did a study in computer revolution and its effect in America business environment. Cortada did a survey study which he titled “The Digital Hand” the historical survey employed by the research was specifically to understudy the paradigm shift in the way American businesses is done with full consumer application. Study largely focus on how computers and telecommunications have been deployed in some integral aspect of American business especially in over a dozen of financial, telecommunications, media and entertainment sectors over the past half century. The work revealed how management in some forty industries embraced the computer and changed the American economy. The study however explained that it is difficult to grasp the full extent of these changes and their implication for the future of business. The study traced to history of computer, how the system were first used, by who and why. The research combined detail analysis with narrative history to provide a broad overview of computing and telecommunications role in over a dozen industries, raging from old economy sector like finance and publishing to new economy sectors like digital photography and video games. The work devoted considerable attention to the rapidly changing media and entertainment industries which are now some of the most technologically advance in the American economy. Beginning from 1950, when commercial applications of digital technology began to appear, Cortada examines the ways different industries adopted new technologies, as well as the ways their innovative applications influenced other industries and the US economy as a whole. In addition to the account of computers’ impact on industries, Cortada also demonstrates how industries themselves influenced the nature of digital technology. The “digital hand” provides a detailed picture of what the infrastructure of the information age really looks like and how we got there. James Cortada work was done many years before the recent innovative technology in DTV.
CONCLUSION
Digital television transition (DTV) is an advanced broadcasting technology that has transformed viewers television viewing experience especially in countries of Europe and America where the technology is making the wave. The technology ensures that the viewer are fed with qualitative audio and video signal apart from opportunities it offers which enable viewers to navigate through the channels (Multicasting).
This system is however, yet to come to fruition in Nigeria, like many other third world countries. But since the development of technology and its effective application are both functions of a given society’s level of economic and social development, the ability of the Nigerian T.V. stations to absorb and deploy recent advances in technology have been hampered by the country’s continuing underdevelopment.
Newly emerging trends regarding technology and the mass media as a whole globally indicate that the mass media in Nigeria will increasingly left behind unless the country break the chain of economic stagnation and achieves a higher level of development that will guarantee its citizens a higher standard of living that will be a strong stimulus for production and consumption of technology.
RECOMMENDATIONS
The Nigerian government through (NBC) should consider taken advantage of the precedent set by the American congress to explore the Digital World of Television broadcast and its many advantage over existing analog system still in operation in the country.
The agency should fore study policies of digital television in countries that have operationalized the system to improve and adjust in areas where necessary.
In view of the outcome of the NBC’s research, the government should ensure that granting of license of disserving private and public T.V. station is carried out with less bottle neck.

REFERENCES
Cortada, J.W. (2006) The Digital hand “England” Oxford University Press.

Ralph, A. Akintelaye (2003) Issues in Nigeria Media History: 1990-2000 AD. Lagos: Malthouse Press Limited.

Sambe, J.A. (2008) Introduction to Mass Communication Practice in Nigeria. Ibadan: Spectrum Books Limited.

THE BENEFITS OF TRANSITION FROM ANALOGUE TO DIGITAL BROADCASTING IN NIGERIA
BY
UGWU MERCY
IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE COURSE COM 702- BROADCAST JOURNALISM SEMINAR

INTRODUCTION
Television broadcasting in Nigeria, no doubt, have contributed tremendously to nation building fifty (50) years after its establishment. This is in recognition of its programming that have continued to entertain, educate and inform the public about happenings around them, taking elected officials to task on their responsibilities thus fulfilling their constitutional role of holding the government accountable to the people.
These fifty (50) years of broadcasting have been achieved through analogue broadcasting signal. However, with the trend of information superhighway and the globalization of the world, Nigerian broadcasters need to pay close attention to the production of edifying programmes using the best available technology. The challenge of providing sufficient suitable content is also further underlined by the imminent transition from analogue to digital terrestrial broadcasting, which will further expand the spectrum and offer more space that needs to be filled with content.
Digital communication is an advanced form of information transfer in which messages are converted into a series of 1s and Os (binary digits), and sent over a channel to the receiver. Digital devices (media) are preferred to analogue ones because of the advantages that the former has over the latter (Kombol, n.d: l).
Digitization programme in Nigeria commenced in Abuja on the 3rd of June, 2008 following a meeting of stakeholders in the broadcast industry where the forum underscored the need for Nigeria to embrace the new technology so as to prevent the country from becoming a dumping ground for obsolete analogue equipment (NBC report).
The Federal Government has set 17th June and later 31st December, 2012 as switchover date for the transition of analogue to digital television broadcasting, three years ahead of the International Telephone Union’s (ITU), of which Nigeria is a member and signatory, deadline of 2015 (UHF) and 2020 (YHF) for full transition worldwide (Jimoh, 2008). This is coming on the heels of similar ‘self set’ deadlines of mostly European and African countries like Britain, Sweden, France, Kenya and South Africa among others.
Nigeria however, officially began the digitization of its broadcast industry in December, 2007 following the late President Umaru Musa Yar’ Adua’s approval, directing the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) , the industry’s regulatory body to set in motion and pilot the programme towards the target date.
The digitization of analogue broadcasting signal is one of the most significant changes in broadcast environment to meet the current conventional trend of digital electronics, computers and tremendous flow of global information
The NBC recognizes, ditization, the conversion of the broadcast and communication systems from analogue to digital, as an important global movement driven by ITU that will revolutionize broadcasting, as we know it.
The transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting will affect all segments in the broadcasting value chain, namely: content production, transmission and reception as all will require technical upgrading to support digital broadcasts. However, the transition will bring along some benefits which this paper intends to examine.

STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The analogue broadcasting signal has been in existence in the country for a long time. The fact that the analogue has contributed to the development of the broadcast industry can not be overemphasized. However, with the advent of the digital technology which will revolutionize broadcasting and solve the problems created by the analogue system, there is every need to correct those anomalies using the best available technology by substituting obsolete equipment with new and more favourable ones.
In view of the above, this paper seeks to know the benefits accruable to Nigerians by transiting from analogue to digital broadcasting.
RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The following study questions were raised to give the paper a focus. They include:
i. What are the benefits of digital broadcasting?
ii. How can these benefits be harnessed for the good of the society?

DEFINITION OF TERMS

Transition: This is the process or the period of changing from one state or condition to another. In this case, the process of changing from analogue to digital broadcasting.

Analogue: This has to do with an electronic process of using a continuously changing range of physical quantities to measure or store data.

Digital: This refers to the system of receiving and sending information as a series of the numbers one and zero, showing that an electronic signal is there or is not there.

Broadcasting: This is the act or business of making and sending out radio and television programmes.

REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Digitization both improves the quality of reception and ensures a more efficient use of the spectrum, which is a scarce and finite natural resource belonging to all Nigerians and held in trust by licensees.
As earlier stated, the transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting will affect all segments in the broadcasting value chain. The regulatory body for broadcasting in Nigeria (NBC) recognized this fact and stressed the urgent need for the nation to take advantage of this inevitable global phenomenon.
According to Igyor (n.d), this historic technology shift will result in all the present television stations on the continent to vacate the analogue airwaves which has been the industry standard since the introduction of television in 1959. He notes that the switch to digital will open up valuable spectrum space that now carries over-the-air broadcasts so that it can be used for emergency response and other transmissions.
Ogah (2009) observes that digital links use data compressions which generally have more efficient bandwidth usage than analogue links, which allows a content provider more room to provide services, or to produce a higher-quality signal than had been previously available with the analogue technique.
Johnson cited in Kombol (n.d:l) opines that digital communication systems are more efficient, perform better and have greater flexibility. This can be seen in devices such as computers, digital cameras, mobile phones, touch screens, etc.
Tanner (1998:10) is of the view that digital broadcasting alerts us that it is indeed time to go back to the concerns at the root of broadcasting – the wish to encourage local content for a diversity of voices, for the observance of community standards – and ask what will become of each of them in the coming digital world.
Digital is seen as a more efficient transmission technology that allows broadcast stations to offer improved picture and sound quality, as well as offer more programming options for consumers through multiple broadcast streams (multicasting), (Federal Communications Commission report).
Igyor (n.d) notes that digital technology for the production, transmission and reception of television is clearly superior to analogue, hence the eventual complete transition to digital throughout the world is inevitable. He further affirmed that the development of digital compression techniques has reduced the amount of spectrum required for television transmission, and this provides scope for a substantial increase in the number of spectrum required for television signals available to viewers.
In view of the importance of digitization, the NBC has encouraged cable (MMDS) and DTH operators to digitize their operations. All operators in the country are now transmitting digital signals. The Nigerian Television Authority, NTA recently launched its digital terrestrial multi-channel station, which is a positive step to this transformation.

THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK
This work finds explanation in the Diffusion and Technological Determinism theory propounded by Everret Rogers in 1986. The theory proposes the use of communication to transfer technological innovation from development agencies to the clients so as to create an appetite for change through raising a climate modernization among members of the public.
The relevance of the theory to this study is based on the fact that, technological innovations can imbibe development through the diffusion of message it carries, hence digital broadcasting as technological innovation is an answer to the problems posed by the analogue system.

RELATED EMPIRICAL STUDY
The study “Digital Broadcasting: Migrating Implications and the Challenges for Nigeria Broadcast Stations” by Ogah (2009) sought to find the implications or benefits of digital techniques of broadcasting over analogue and the challenge posed by the transition from analogue to digital techniques for broadcast stations in Nigeria.
The researcher adopted the content analysis method in generating data for the study which were mainly reviewed works from books, articles and online materials.
Findings revealed that the implications or benefits of digital broadcasting over analogue has to do with quality content production, good reception, possibilities of huge spectrum for broadcasting, access to internet, less band with, quality signal, among others. The study also found that digital broadcasting constitute threat to the old analogue equipment by rendering some obsolete noting that the use of converter box and the low economic power of both some broadcast station and individuals to transit conveniently is a big problem.
The study concluded that Nigerians should endeavour to embrace the technology now and not wait for 2012 before doing so in order to avoid a fire brigade approach.

THE BENEFITS OF DIGITAL BROADCASTING
Studies have shown that digital broadcasting or digital television transition attracts a lot of benefits to viewers, broadcast stations, programme producers and the government. The following are the benefits of digital broadcasting as relates to viewers or consumers, the broadcast media and the government as discussed by Igyor (n.d.)
For the viewers, digital television transmissions generally provide improved picture and sound quality, and are much susceptible to distortion and atmospheric interference.
Also, because less power is required for digital transmissions, the energy consumption and broadcast costs for each television service is lower than the analogue. Digital terrestrial television will bring about more portability in the sense that with a single antenna inside or attached to the television set, viewers will be able to receive signals everywhere in the house. However, offering portability requires the installation of additional transmitters, hence increasing the cost of the new technology.
The development of digital compression techniques has reduced the amount of spectrum required for television transmission, and this provides scope for a substantial increase in the number of spectrum required for television signals available to viewers.
For broadcast stations, digital television enables television stations to provide dramatically clearer pictures and better sound quality.
Digital television can also offer multiple programming choices, interactive capabilities and data services such as significantly enhanced closed captioning.
Digital broadcasting enables broadcast stations to expand the size and scope of their operations by providing additional programming channels and to maintain and increase their share of the television audience, which has been eroded by the proliferation of pay satellite and cable services.
For programme producers, digital simplifies, streamlines, and reduces the costs involved with production, editing, storage and transmission of television programmes and services. A multiplication in the number of channels will boost demand for television programmes and attractive content will become highly valued asset.
Nation governments are not left out in this digital gain as digital broadcasting creates the potential to reassign part of the spectrum released by the eventual termination of analogue transmissions to other communications uses, and provides the opportunity for national governments to generate revenue from sale of part or all of this released spectrum capacity.
Unlike the arrangement for the adoption of digital transmissions by cable and satellite services which were determined by the commercial operators, the transition to digital terrestrial broadcasting primarily involves political decision making and raises a wider range of issues and options. Thus digital broadcasting is driven by policies of the national governments. These governments determine the timing of the commencement of digital transmission, the means to ensure that the consumer can receive terrestrial free to air (FTA) programming with their existing analogue receivers, the licensing of new entrants and interactive television (ITV) services, and arrangements for the eventual termination of the analogue transmission system.
It is evident from the above that digital broadcasting indeed possess a lot of potentials if the innovation is adopted.
HARNESSING THE POTENTIALS OF DIGITAL BROADCASTING
In order to harvest the advantages of the global digitization movement for the good of the society, government should provide the necessary and enabling infrastructure as well as adequate funds to midwife the transition.
In addition, government should fashion out appropriate policy on methodology and pace of migration, acquisition of set-up boxes for existing receiver already in the country and generally give direction to the industry in the interest of the nation.
Only when the necessary machineries are put up and the viewers, broadcasters as well as broadcast stations adopt the technology will its benefits be tapped for the betterment of the nation.

CONCLUSION
It is evident from the foregoing that the benefits of digital broadcasting are overwhelming. It is one of the most significant changes in broadcast environment that calls for all segments of the society such as broadcasters, political/policy leaders, manufacturers, programme producers, and the viewers to be actively involved.
Thus, as Nigeria seek to join the rest of the world in the transition from analogue to digital broadcasting, government, NBC and the public have major roles to play in the digitization movement.

RECOMMENDATIONS
The study recommends that governments, executives, legislatures, judiciaries and other organs of policy makers should create conducive environment that will enable citizens and economic interest to thrive.
The digital terrestrial broadcasting policy must be total, comprehensive and universal carrying along all societies, urban or rural, rich or poor, educated or not, to enable audience members to continue to enjoy the services when the switch over takes place.
The NBC should educate the operators and the public on the implications of the switchover including the social benefits and the timetable.
NBC should also execute a planned migration strategy, and midwife it up to the switch off of the analogue system. It should endeavour to select the best standards that will give the most benefit to consumers.

REFERENCES
Federal Communications Commission Report. Retrieved 23/11/2010 from http://www.fcconline.com
Igyor, G.A. (n.d) “Digitization and the Challenges of Broadcasting: All segments of the society must be involved if Africa must not be left behind” An Unpublished Paper.
Jimoh, A. (2008) “Digitization-Transiting from Analogue Pains to Digital Gains” Retrieved 23/11/2010 fromhttp://www.dailytrust.com

Kombol, M.A.(n.d) Nigeria Mass Media in this Digital Age. Makurdi: AsaGod Printers.

National Broadcasting Commission (2010) Retrieved 23/11/2010 from http:// www. Nbc news.htm.
Ogah, I. A (2009) “Digital Broadcasting: Migrating Implications and the Challenges for Nigeria Broadcast Stations”. A paper submitted for the course COM 702-Broadcast Journalism Seminar to the department of Mass Communication, Benue State University, Makurdi.
Tanner, G. (1998) digital broadcasting – the wedge widens. Presented at the communications research forum, 24-25 September.

POST GRADUATE SCHOOL,
DEPARTMENT OF MASS COMMUNICATION
BENUE STATE UNIVERSITY, MAKURDI, BENUE STATE
NAME: IGBOLO, PETER LIWHOH (BSU/SS/MSC/09/4603)
SEMINAR ON: Digital Television Transmission
REVIEWED TOPIC: Digital Television Transmission in Nigeria: A blessing or curse?
ABSTRACT
This paper sets out to examine the extent and trends of development in Television production and transmission globally but with particular attention to developments in Africa and Nigeria in particular. As a powerful media of communication, television has come a long way and currently boasts of a lot of innovations which are globally being imbibed different nations. This medium of communication is highly patronized and has a lot of influence on the society in terms of content disseminated. The Press is an integral part of the society, and like the parts of a body, it cannot totally and completely isolate itself from the characteristic nature of the larger society in terms of global changes. We shall therefore examine how these changes have affected Nigeria in particular and what consequences attach compliance thereto or non-compliance with set global goals and standards. We shall equally attempt to discover the benefits or otherwise of these innovations to Nigeria and, of course, whether or not there is an option not to be a part of the global changes.
INTRODUCTION
Television is that physical process whereby a specially constructed transmitter may have optical images and scenes thrown upon it and transformed into electrical impulses for transmission by wire or by radio. At a distant point these electrical impulses are taken by a receiver and retransformed into a faithful reproduction of the original images and scenes, and made visible to an observer. If sound effects also are transmitted, the more realistic becomes the whole process for the observer. At the receiving end, these electrical impulses must be transformed back into visible light. There are various forms of receivers for such electrical impulses, but the simplest to understand is the one based on the neon lamp. This form of light source consists of a glass tube from which all gas has been exhausted except a minute amount of neon gas. Into the ends of such a glass tube have been sealed metal wire leads. When a small potential difference is applied to the terminals of such a tube, a conduction of electrical charges occurs, and the neon gas emits its characteristic light, the amount of which will depend upon the potential difference applied to the terminals of the tube. Hence, if the varying electrical impulses which have been transmitted by wire or by radio from the transmitting set are applied to the neon tube, its illumination will fluctuate in just the same way as did the light falling originally on the transmitter. By this means a series of varying light and dark spots could be transmitted by electrical impulses and at the receiving set retransformed into a faithful reproduction of the original dark and light areas which were scanned in the transmitter.
The year 1938 will stand out as a landmark in the history of the development of television globally because that was when the receiving gadget emerged in the markets and its development in later years was aimed at ironing out some perceived shortcomings in line with development trends. Still this mechanism has remained a unique one for the transmission of electrical images of illuminated objects. These developments were later to be assessed in Nigeria and other African countries. In Nigeria, the history of television could be traced to the year 1959 and this was pioneered by the Western Region of Nigeria. However, until now what has been in vogue is the analog system of transmission and reception of signals. Current global changes are witnessing a departure from this erstwhile mode to the current innovations of digitally transmitted and received signals. These current developments in this industry have been acknowledged to accompany a lot of benefits in terms of quality and reception distance. Some of these benefits according to Microsoft Encarta Premium include the fact that digitalized television has several advantages over analog television, the most significant being that digital channels take up less bandwidth, and the bandwidth needs are continuously variable, at a corresponding reduction in image quality depending on the level of compression as well as the resolution of the transmitted image. This means that digital broadcasters can provide more digital channels in the same space, provide high-definition television service, or provide other non-television services such as multimedia or interactivity. Digital television also permits special services such as multiplexing (more than one program on the same channel), electronic program guides and additional languages (spoken or subtitled). The sale of non-television services may provide an additional revenue source.
Digital signals react differently to interference than analog signals. For example, common problems with analog television include ghosting of images, noise from weak signals, and many other potential problems which degrade the quality of the image and sound, although the program material may still be watchable. With digital television, the audio and video must be synchronized digitally, so reception of the digital signal must be very nearly complete; otherwise, neither audio nor video will be usable. Short of this complete failure, “blocky” video is seen when the digital signal experiences interference.
The above rosy benefits of new technology are not without attendant negative consequences. Arising from the experiences of America whose migration is complete, a number of social and environmental factors arise in form of social problems. These according to Encarta may include the fact that the adoption of a broadcast standard incompatible with existing analog receivers will created the problem of large numbers of analog receivers being discarded during digital television transition. An estimated 99 million unused analog TV receivers were found to be in storage in the US alone and, while some obsolete receivers were being retrofitted with converters, many more were simply dumped in landfills where they represent a source of toxic metals such as lead as well as lesser amounts of materials such as barium, cadmium and chromium. Thus, the digital television transition, migration to the digitalised high-definition television receivers and the replacement of CRTs with flat screens are all factors in the increasing number of discarded analog CRT-based television receivers.
While the glass in cathode ray tubes contains an average of 3.62 kilograms (8.0 lb) of lead (amount varies from 1.08 lb to 11.28 lb, depending on screen size but the lead is “stable and immobile”) which could have long-term negative effects on the environment if dumped as landfill, the glass envelope can be recycled at suitably-equipped facilities. Other portions of the receiver may be subject to disposal as hazardous material.
Change they say is the only constant social factor. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has set a deadline for the full transition to digital broadcast for 2015. Reports have it that the United States has switched from analog to Digital Terrestrial Television, alongside most of the European countries, with the rest hoping to have completed the switchover mostly by 2012, three years ahead of the MDG deadline of 2015 in accordance with the Geneva Convention. In many countries, a simulcast service is operated where a broadcast is made available to viewers in both analogue and digital at the same time. As digital becomes more popular, it is likely that the existing analogue services will be removed. In some cases this has already happened, where a broadcaster has offered incentives to viewers to encourage them to switch to digital. In other cases government policies have been introduced to encourage or force the switchover process, especially with regard to terrestrial broadcasts. Government intervention usually involves providing some funding for broadcasters and, in some cases monetary relief to viewers, to enable a switchover to happen by a given deadline.
As the Advanced world imbibes a new culture of technological breakthrough, Africa is not being completely left behind. In fact, many African countries have been and are trying to identify with the innovative trends. Countries like South Africa, Uganda, and Ghana have been acknowledged as taking the lead in this continent though their level of development in this respect is at different stages. In South Africa, MultiChoice had since 2008 begun the testing of the switch over to Digital Terrestrial Television of its subscribers in selected cities, beginning with Cape Town in accordance with the South African government determination to ensure smooth migration by 2011. Using its Digital Satellite Television (DStv) subscribers living in the Cape Town area, MultiChoice intimated them of likely interference experienced on their television signals from 10 November 2008, when the switch on of a DTT transmitter by M-Net was effected. In Uganda, five television stations were selected to participate in a digital broadcast pilot with 200 viewers receiving the signal in the capital Kampala. The Executive Director, Uganda Communications Commission, Mr. Patrick Masambu, said those at the digital TV pilot viewing that the country would end analog signals by December 2012, which is only three years away from the global deadline. Ghana had begun to digitalise its television broadcasting industry. Ghana signed the Geneva 2006 (GE06) Agreement to switch off analog television transmissions by 17 June 2015 and has since begun the digitalising process. They recognize that the consequences of failure to keep faith with June, 2015 would mean that Ghana will no longer be protected by the international telecom governing body if other countries interfere in its broadcasting territory.

STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The necessity and importance of communication has already universally been acknowledged. This is moreso in this era of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). According to McLuhan, the world has been reduced to a “global village” because of the tremendous impact of modern communication technology. Keeping trends with others nations of the world is the least expectation of any country if such a country must see itself as being a full and viable participant in the comity of nations. Nigeria is a country blessed with abundant human, material and natural resources. This notwithstanding, all has not been well with the nation as result of non adherence to positive social values. Corruption has, albeit, officially been entrenched into the system. This has adversely affected its performance in almost all its facets of social endeavour. Like other African nations, Nigeria is determined to be a part of the current developmental trend by adopting current standards of switching from the analog mode of television signal transmission to that of the digitalized format. Apart from the fact that this is a capital intensive project, one wonders how prepared the nation can be to take on the accompanying liabilities of environmental factors already highlighted. This apprehension is arises against the backdrop of the fact that over the years, the country’s power sector has persistently been on the decline and been reduced to a level where it has been acknowledged as a common fact that power supply is no more a necessity. One therefore wonders that if the country cannot adequately sustain its power sector which is critical and germane to the implementation and sustenance of Information and Communication, how then can the country be able to manage the digitalization process of television in tune with global standards. It is our pessimistic contention that, like the moribund experiences in the power sector, this other project would not only serve as a drain pipe to the nation’s resources, but would certainly remain perpetually an “on-going” project.

RESEARCH QUESTIONS
The following research questions have been posed for consideration in this study:
1. Is Nigeria physically and psychologically ready to be a part of the global transition from an analog to a digital world in terms of television broadcast?
2. Is Nigeria’s manifestation of intention to imbibe digitalized television broadcast genuine or a mere attempt to play act?
3. Can Nigeria adequately surmount the consequences of digital television broadcast?
4. Is there any option for Nigeria whether or not to identify with this global trend?

DEFINITION OF TERMS
CTR – Carthode Ray Tube, a component inside an analog television set
Mbps – Megabit-per-second referring to the amount of processed data within the time frame
MDG – Millennium Development Goals which are standards universally set for development
Medium/Media – refers to a/the medium/media of communication including traditional, print, broadcast and the new media

REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
In an article by Marshall Brain titled How Digital Television Works posted on the net, the author gave a general overview explaining the basic concepts associated with digital television broadcasting and in addition contrasting it with the analog transmission formats. Also addressed are the different stages involved in the migration and transition process, finally concluding with a clear distinction of the different signal reception formats.
According to the author:
Digital TV started as a free broadcast medium as well. For example, in San Jose, Calif., you can tune in to about a dozen different commercial digital TV stations if you have a digital TV receiver and an antenna. The FCC gave television broadcasters a new frequency to use for their digital broadcasts, so until the digital transition is complete, each broadcaster has an analog TV channel and a digital TV channel. The digital channel carries a 19.39-megabit-per-second stream of digital data that your digital TV receives and decodes. Each broadcaster has one digital TV channel, but one channel can carry multiple sub-channels if the broadcaster chooses that option.
On how it works he said:
On its digital channel, each broadcaster sends a 19.39-megabit-per-second (Mbps) stream of digital data. Broadcasters have the ability to use this stream in several different ways. For example:
• A broadcaster can send a single program at 19.39 Mbps.
• A broadcaster can divide the channel into several different streams (perhaps four streams of 4.85 Mbps each). These streams are called sub-channels, and this type of broadcasting is called multicasting. For example, if the digital TV channel is channel 53, then 53.1, 53.2 and 53.3 could be three sub-channels on that channel. Each sub-channel can carry a different program.

He concluded with reasons on the attendant advantages thus:
The reason that broadcasters can create sub-channels is because digital TV standards allow several different formats. Broadcasters can choose between three formats.
This position undoubtedly is in consonance with the position of other scholars and contributors on the issue. For instance, in answer to Australia’s Multicultural Broadcast participant questions on issues raised, the following responses were made:
Digital Television is an exciting new technology that changes the way that Free to Air television broadcasters provide their television broadcasts to you, the viewer. Digital television provides better picture quality, improved sound and superior reception to your existing analogue television service.
Television programs broadcast in digital television are delivered in a quality equal to that offered by DVD as standard. Like DVD, digital television also allows broadcasters to provide their programming in a widescreen (16:9) picture format that provides a larger viewing area. This base form of digital television broadcast is referred to as a “Standard Definition” picture.

Digital television also allows broadcasters to provide certain programs in a very high quality picture format equal to that shown in movie cinemas. This picture quality is known as “High Definition” and allows broadcasters to deliver their television programs in cinema quality right to your home.
Digital television delivers viewers CD-quality stereo sound as standard with their new DVD, widescreen picture. Broadcasters may also choose to deliver Dolby Digital Surround sound with programs such as movies or drama.
The sound quality of Dolby Digital when teamed with a High Definition television program offers you the viewer, the best possible television viewing experience available today.
In another article by Evans Boah-Mensah titled “Migrating From Analog to Digital Television” the author reviews the processes of migration in relation to African countries but with special emphasis on Ghana. He emphasized the need for the country to comply with standards set universally as a failure thereof could engender unpleasant consequences. He said “Failing to switch over to digital broadcasting by June, 2015 would mean that Ghana will no longer be protected by the international telecom governing body if other countries interfere in its broadcasting territory.”

Finally, in an article authored by Desmond Ekeh on the Nigerian experience and titled “Nigerian Television at 50: Challenges of Digitisation” he x-rayed Nigeria’s broadcast history from inception in 1959 highlighting almost the solo efforts of the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) at meeting the information needs of the whole country prior to the liberalization policy and concluded with an analysis of the challenges of broadcasting in relation to digitising the sector. According to him:
The main challenge of broadcasting today all over the world and indeed in Nigeria is migrating from analog to digital broadcasting. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has set a deadline for the full transition to digital broadcast for 2015, and Nigeria is a signatory to this agreement, fixing its switchover date at 31 December 2012. Technology has grown rapidly since the analog system was introduced, and the current analog system cannot support future development.
Confirming Nigeria’s resolve to embrace this change, Yomi Bolarinwa of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), pointed out that the most critical and urgent factor to be considered is that of informing the people to prepare them for the anticipated changes. According to him “publicity is a key element in the transition” and he went on to dispel the misconception that Nigeria was not responding sufficiently in relation to other African countries. He said “Nigeria is ahead of most African countries in the march towards the 2012 switchover date, as well as in the state of the industry.”
THEORITICAL FRAMEWORK
The theoretical framework adopted for this study is Medium Theory. This theory focuses on the characteristics of the medium of communication rather than on what it conveys or how information is received. In this theory, a medium is not just like a newspaper or the internet etc., but its symbolic environment in any communicative act. It presupposes that media, apart from whatever content they transmit, impact on society and individuals. According to Marshall McLuhan, people adapt to their environment through a certain balance or ratio of the senses, and the primary medium of the age brings out a particular sense ratio, thereby affecting perception. McLuhan (1964) challenged conventional definitions of communication when he said that the medium is the message. He stressed how channels differed, not only in terms of their content, but also in regard to how they awaken and alter thoughts and senses. He distinguished media by the cognitive processes each required. He therefore, popularized the idea that channels are a dominant force that must be understood to know how the media influence society and culture. This theory is an analytical theory with few empirical models building. Some of the methods used are analysis of media characteristics and historical analysis of human perception. The theory examines physical, psychological and social variables as the senses that are required to attend to the medium; whether the communication is bi-directional or uni-directional, how quickly messages can be disseminated, whether learning to encode and decode in the medium is difficult or simple, how many people can attend to the same message at the same moment, etc. Medium theorists argue that such variables influence the medium’s use and its social, political and psychological impact.

RELATED EMPIRICAL STUDIES
In a paper titled “Directing the Digital Dividend towards Bridging the Digital Divide in Nigeria” co-investigated by Gbenga-Ilori, A. O. and Ibiyemi, T. S., the paper sought among other things to investigate the use of digital dividend from the transition from analog to digital television broadcasting to bridge the divide between urban and rural dwellers in Nigeria. Five areas categorized as zones were used for the study. Technical projections were made and the approach also adopted was based on technical considerations, economic and social benefits. The researchers came out with the results that wireless broadband network was preferred for use because of its potentials and capacity to bridge the reception gap in the rural areas. This fact was in addition to that of its high revenue potentials and prospects. The researchers were equally able to identify some challenges which include:
(a) The slowness of transition from analog to the digital transmission format due to its financial implication; and
(b) Government’s attitude in relation to policy formulation and implementation of decisions both of which were unreasonably delayed.
Finally, the researchers were able to venture some recommendations which include the following:
(a) That digital dividend should reflect social interest rather solely being guided by economic gains;
(b) That intensive public awareness was necessary for accelerated transition from analog to digital television transmission; and
(c) That Government should ensure adequate availability of appropriate receivers at affordable rates for the benefit of the consumers.

CONCLUSION
From the above presentation, it is safe to conclude that a lot of changes are in fact taking place in relation to information communication technology worldwide. These changes are deemed to have more positive values than the negative attendant consequences. It is also obvious that Africa is not being left behind in these social trends. Reports have it that many African countries are making efforts to be carried along. Nigeria is not certainly left out of this striving for better options. Though some people are of the view that the country’s efforts is sluggish and lacks total commitment, however, the official government position on the issue is to the contrary of this conception. This much has been adverted to by Danusa Ocholi as reported in “A New Dawn in the Broadcast Industry” where he said:
The broadcast industry in Nigeria is undergoing a quiet revolution. The revolution is about the country’s ongoing transition from analog to digitisation, a technological innovation that will change the scope of radio and television broadcasting in the country. Nigeria had set June 17, 2012 as the switch- over date from the current mode of broadcasting to the ultramodern digital terrestrial broadcasting. The date is three years before the June 17, 2015 deadline for the entire world set by the International Telecommunications Union, ITU, after its Congress in Geneva, Switzerland, in 2006.

Recently at the African Broadcaster (Africast 2010), President Jonathan reinstating government’s total commitment to this venture proclaimed that the Federal Government had finished studying the report of the Presidential Advisory Committee on digital migration and would soon issue a White Paper to that effect, which would radically alter the way the business of broadcasting in the country. That Government, recognised that digitisation should best be driven by policy, therefore they are preparing to send a bill to the National Assembly for a law that would provide the legal framework for the smooth transition, which would deal with the basic issues of signal distribution, licensing, spectrum planning, broadcast standards, set-top-boxes and the like.
In the same vein the Minister of Information and Communications, Prof. Dora Akunyili expressed pleasure at the steady growth of Africast, especially the exhibition aspect, which provides local broadcasters the opportunity to come into direct contact with some of the latest equipment, and simplify their process of getting the right facilities that meet their needs. She also urged equipment manufacturers to take advantage of these opportunities and think about investing in the local manufacture of broadcast hardware, particularly set-top boxes, which would play vital role during and after the switchover to digital terrestrial broadcasting, noting that a factory in Nigeria would conveniently and profitably serve the whole of West Africa and beyond.
According to Ocholi, Nigeria officially started the digitisation of its broadcast industry in December 2007 following President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s approval. Digitisation has many advantages over analogue broadcasting, especially in terms of clarity and quality of signals and spectrum efficiency. Digitisation of television signals in particular are clearer and stronger in their audio and video output.

Acknowledging the many positive gains attending, government accepts that since digital technology has opened a world of possibilities for broadcasting, a huge spectrum will be available for radio and television broadcast in the country. As a result, more frequencies or wavelengths will be available for television stations in the country. It will also afford the industry opportunities for interactive broadcasting as the television sets would now do much more than receive broadcast signals. Television sets, under digital technology, would perform like computers and telephone handsets, provide access to internets and store data apart from the main function of receiving audio and visual signals.

In all, digital television, DTV, is a new way of transmitting high quality video and audio signals to the viewers’ television sets. Using DTV, broadcasters, cable television operators and satellite programme services can transmit high definition TV images, CD quality surround audio and new services such as multicasting, that is having more than one programme on the same channel; as well as data casting which is electronic programme guides and interactive television.

That since a minimum of four programmes and four channels can be transmitted simultaneously from a station using the same bandwidth originally used for a single programme or channel in analogue transmission, Digital television therefore offers more variety of added services such as multimedia, banking, home shopping and faster rates of data transmission, which advantages and opportunities the country would not let slip by.

On whether the issue of compliance was optional to Nigeria and whether Nigerians are complying with the new technology, Awwalu Salihu, Head, Public Affairs of National Broadcasting Commission, NBC, told Newswatch recently in Abuja that “The truth of the matter is that television and radio stations do not have a choice. Nobody has a choice. If we do not migrate from analogue to digital, we will end up being in the dark. It is in everybody’s interest to migrate.”

In conclusion, it could be asserted that Nigeria like all other nations of the world cannot be left behind in the current scheme of things especially considering the wave of benefits associated with the technological innovations in vogue. Just like other nations are accessing these benefits, so also should they be prepared to take adequate steps towards addressing the environmental and other social problems accompanying it.
RECOMMENDATIONS
Nigeria undoubtedly has all it takes to take the initial step in every progressive venture in Africa especially if it must justify its claim to be “the giant of Africa”. The country can boast of abundant human, material and natural resources. It is no more secret that the only problem that threatens its assertion to be the first among equals in Africa is attitude towards things especially where they are viewed as public property or benefit. Until we can overcome our selfish dispositions which have given rise to uncontrollable corruption and other social vices in the society, we shall continually be living in a world of perpetual dishonor and all our aspirations an aberration.
We have no option in relation to the global developments in relation to communication. We must endeavour to, like other progressive countries of the world, take advantage of the gains of new technology and be in tune with global standards in relation to Information Communication Technology. We have the resources and therefore they should be properly channeled for the benefit of all in this all-important venture. The enabling environment should be put in place to conveniently access this new technology. Certainly, we would be the better off with it.
I will simply adopt the recommendations of Gbenga-Ilori, A. O. and Ibiyemi, T. S. in their treatise which sum up to the following propositions:
(a) That digital dividend should reflect social interest rather solely being guided by economic gains;
(b) That intensive public awareness was necessary for accelerated transition from analog to digital television transmission; and
(c) That Government should ensure adequate availability of appropriate receivers at affordable rates for the benefit of the consumers.

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