Las Vegas -- The Consumer Electronics Association is quickly retreating from
its initial negative reaction Friday to a new digital-television-transition plan
unveiled by Federal Communications Commission chairman Michael Powell.
Powell's plan, billed by the FCC as a voluntary mandate on various
industries, included a proposal calling on digital-TV-set makers to include
digital-TV tuners in nearly all new sets by the end of 2006.
The CEA has resisted government-imposed tuner mandates, and it reacted to
Powell's plan by saying that the tuner proposal was 'unnecessary' and would
'undercut consumer choice.'
'I think we were a little harsh when we came out at first,' CEA president
Gary Shapiro said Tuesday. 'What we want to do is encourage everyone in the
transition to do what they can where they can.'
Shapiro called Powell's plan 'laudatory because it is the kind of moral
leadership that should be exerted.'
The CEA intends to consult with its member companies, then provide Powell
with 'the type of detailed response that he deserves and