Hearing the emergency alert warning tones blaring from your television typically makes you take immediate notice (and immediately hit the Mute button). So when a broadcaster allows a commercial or program to air similar sounds without an actual emergency occurring, they could be on the receiving end of a pretty big fine from federal regulators. [More]
Emergency Alert System
Earlier this morning, AT&T U-Verse subscribers woke up to an alarming, unexplained Emergency Alert Message on their screens. Now the company is trying to shed a bit of light on what exactly happened. [More]
This morning, some AT&T U-Verse subscribers woke to an alarming message displayed on their TV screens declaring a vague emergency, without any mention of it being a test. [More]
Remember Jim? His Comcast cable box randomly responded to the emergency alert system (EAS) by tuning in to QVC. According to a source inside Comcast, rogue lightning strikes set off the EAS, even though there wasn’t an emergency. Two things happen when the EAS activates: the cable box switches to a local channel, and Comcast replaces the local programming with an alert. In Jim’s case, the box switched to the emergency channel—which happened to be QVC—but since there wasn’t an emergency, there was no special broadcast. So what can you do next time your cable box independently declares an emergency?
When Comcast activates the emergency alert system, Jim’s cable box snaps into action and tunes itself to QVC. The locked cable box refuses to tune to any other channel, so Jim is left wondering what emergency information he’s missing while staring at the latest deals on cubic zirconia bracelets.