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It's because KBGF-TV doesn't broadcast in High-Definition. In fact, it doesn't even broadcast in digital, writes The Great Falls Tribune.
That's right. In 2012 -- more than a decade after High-Definition TVs started showing up on store shelves; more than three years after local stations supposedly were required to switch to digital signals -- KBGF-TV viewers are still watching fuzzy old analog.
How could this happen?
KBGF is actually the sister station of KTVH, the NBC affiliate that serves the Helena market. However, KBGF, a low-power station, does not produce its own programming; it simply rebroadcasts the signal of KTVH. And Beartooth Communications, the owner of the two stations, has yet to upgrade KBGF so it can rebroadcast KTVH's signal in high-def and/or digital. (KTVH does broadcast in HD.)
Under the federal digital TV mandate, a low-power station can remain analog until September 1, 2015.
The Great Falls Tribune reports that KBGF station manager Kathy Carrick says it's unlikely that will change before the Olympics, which will air in HD on NBC.
“We’re still in the planning stages of trying to figure out what to do with Great Falls and digital,” Carrick told the newspaper. “But I can tell you that the chances of it becoming that before the Olympics are pretty slim.”
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