The opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Decima Reports.Canada has taken the first baby steps toward migrating to conventional digital television with the release of the CRTC’s licensing framework. But with no deadline imposed, don’t expect free over-the-air television anytime soon.  That’s the way the industry wants it, and the CRTC has heeded their calls for a market-driven rollout. The United States’ experimentation with a deadline-imposed conversion so far has not met with much success. Few expect the Americans will meet their 2006 deadline. There is no reason to impose a deadline, other than to perhaps free up spectrum. Converting to digital will be a costly affair as broadcasters will have to invest in new transmission equipment. Currently, many broadcasters are hurting from the launch of new digital specialty channels that are not garnering as many eyeballs as they had hoped. This, coupled with a soft advertising market, means broadcasters cannot afford to invest heavily in new infrastructure – particularly if there appears to be no immediate returns. The majority of consumers don’t seem to be clamoring for the new technology, either. A cautious approach to digital is also being advocated in Europe. In France, for example, the three major commercial broadcast groups issued a joint declaration for the suspension of digital television. "Faced with the destabilization in the audiovisual sector across Europe and the fragility of the French system…the (movie industry) associations and major private networks are asking for the DTT process to be suspended," states the declaration. Industry players have been talking about the dawn of the digital world for decades. What’s the harm in waiting a few more years for it to arrive? In the case of digital over-the-air television, it seems a propos to not rush ahead too quickly. In this case, a "sustainable" approach is the wisest course.