The Digital Dividend in times of the Coronavirus
In these uncertain days of the Coronavirus that we have had to live through, many things remain in the air. One of them and that affects us first-hand at a professional level is the action plan for the Second Digital Dividend.
Obviously speaking with security and precision of data and dates is practically impossible, but we will try to shed some light on the matter.
Digital Dividend and Coronavirus
Since the publication of the State of Alarm in Royal Decree 463/2020 of March 14 due to the health situation caused by Covid-19, a state of uncertainty was opened regarding the process of adaptation to the new Digital Dividend.
A logical uncertainty due to the seriousness of the event and the ignorance of the duration of said State of Alarm.
Therefore, the Secretary of State for Telecommunications and Digital Infrastructures has been and is in full contact with all the agents involved in this process. And we must not forget that the right to information is a basic right of the citizen, and therefore, the importance of keeping digital terrestrial television (DTT) in optimal operation is essential.
How it will affect the Digital Dividend
The first step was the suspension of the channel change actions in those areas where the simulcast is not carried out until further notice or notable improvement in the situation.
In this way, the service and the right to information is guaranteed, without any area being affected and without the need and inconvenience of the user himself having to retune his television.
So what will happen to the 2DD action plan?
Most of the queries have this address: What will happen now? Is it postponed or not? When? And the simulcast broadcast? ...
With regard to these issues, we must still be cautious, since we are at the beginning of a State of Alarm that is expected to continue in time without having a specific end date.
Therefore, we can only conjecture with possible scenarios, although the Secretary of State for Telecommunications and Digital Infrastructures wants to maintain, as far as possible, current planning.
The simulcast broadcasts that are currently being broadcast will also be maintained and will even continue with the lighting of those simulcast broadcasting centers scheduled for April 1.
The right to information is included in the Spanish Constitution
As an installer, can I continue working on the adaptations?
According to the Government Secretariat itself, it is very important, as logically possible, to maintain the planning and actions of all related agents and especially the activity of the installation companies.
If we refer to the actions of collective facilities during this period of health crisis with the Coronavirus, it must be:
Avoid retuning the televisions, in order not to make unnecessary movements or home visits.
Not removing headers from the collective facilities when incorporating the new channels, both of which must remain in operation, in order to offer this public service and fundamental right of the citizen.
Adopt the necessary protection, prevention and containment measures to avoid the spread of Covid-19 and its spread by following the hygiene instructions and distance from other people offered by the Health Authorities
Basic hygiene and prevention measures
This will very possibly entail a second visit once the situation has ended or stabilized. But, it is a lesser evil considering the situation.