Last Friday, the FCC adopted what may be its final set of rules to govern the nationwide transition to digital television (DTV), as it set forth “policies meant to protect and prepare consumers while ensuring broadcasters have the flexibility granted by Congress to switch to digital before the final June 12 deadline.” The agency’s order takes further steps to implement the DTV Delay Act, which postponed the analog broadcast cut-off date from February 17 to June 12. Noting that its latest DTV order takes into account “lessons learned after February 17, when about one-third of the nation’s full power broadcasters terminated analog programming,” the FCC required stations that continue to broadcast in analog to notify the agency, by March 17, of the date on which they intend to complete the DTV transition. (On Tuesday’s deadline, 927 stations confirmed that they will continue analog broadcasts through June 12, while another 159 stations notified the FCC of their plans to terminate analog service before that date.) Stations will not be permitted to shut off their analog signals before April 16, although non-commercial entities that demonstrate financial hardship may cut off analog service starting on March 27. Broadcasters that shut off analog service early must air viewer notifications for 30 days before the planned cut-off date, and all stations will have to begin airing announcements starting April 1 that educate viewers on the use of antennas, the need periodically to rescan channels on digital televisions and DTV converter boxes, and other measures to avoid loss of service. Broadcasters would also have to air service-loss notices if they anticipate that two percent or more of the viewers in their markets will lose service through the “digital cliff” effect. Major network affiliates will also be allowed to terminate analog service early, provided that at least 90% of the analog viewers in their respective markets continue to receive analog service from at least one other network affiliate through June 12. Commenting on the rules approved last Friday, acting FCC Chairman Michael Copps said, “the guiding principle here is simple—consumers deserve to know the truth.”