Digital upgrade forces AOTV channel switch

  • Post cards were handed out at a recent Athol Selectmen’s meeting announcing the Spectrum cable channel switch coming in October. STAFF PHOTO/DEBORRAH PORTER

Staff Writer
Published: 9/23/2018 1:51:50 PM
Modified: 9/23/2018 1:52:14 PM

ATHOL — AOTV’s community channels are moving.

Carol Courville, executive director of Athol-Orange Community Television Inc., a nonprofit cablecasting corporation, told selectmen that due to changes being made by Spectrum, viewers will have to find channels 1301 and 1302 to access the AOTV bulletin board and local programming.

Spectrum is transitioning to an all-digital service, and customers will no longer be able to access cable TV without a digital cable box. Spectrum customers are being notified that each television in the home will require a cable box.

Courville said viewers will have to tune to Channel 1301 to watch the next Athol Selectboard meeting on Oct. 2.

“When they do the channel change in October, it will change AOTV’s channels,” said Courville. “We have been on channels 13 and 19 since our inception in 1995. Spectrum is coming in with all the other changes in requirement of the converter box with their encoding the digital signal.”

Channel 19, where one can listen to AOTV’s radio station WVAO 105.9 and view the bulletin board announcements for the community, will be on Channel 1302.

Courville said, “There are no other channels next to it. They’ve leveled the playing field, and done this out in the Berkshires, Pittsfield and Maine, moving all access channels to the upper spectrum of the channels.”

She said AOTV is planning to obtain a cable box and do a video to show people how to save the upper channels to their “favorites” channels.

“People are not going to surf from 13 all the way up to 1301,” she said.

AOTV has made cards to send out to viewers, and will be putting it on the local channel, radio, email blast, Facebook and other social media so people will be aware of it.

“It’s not going to be easy to find us,” she said.

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