Items tagged "Spectrum Reform"

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PK at the National Conference for Media Reform

April 7, 2011 Broadband , Fair Use , FCC , Network Neutrality , Spectrum Reform

A good third of the PK staff is shipping up to Boston for Free Press’s fifth National Conference for Media Reform (NCMR) this weekend. Not only are we excited about the Shake Your Media Maker Dance Party, but we’re also looking forward to participating in a wide variety of panels with our public interest colleagues. From wireless and spectrum policy to copyright and remix culture, the issues that PK staff will be covering run the gamut. If you’re joining us at NCMR, we’ll also have a table set up in the exhibit hall this year (where you can find this awesome t-shirt)!

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How Commissioner Baker Can Solve Chairman Genachowski’s Spectrum Politics Dilemma

March 29, 2011 Broadband , FCC , Spectrum Licensing , Spectrum Reform , White Space

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski has a spectrum politics problem problem. On the one hand, he learned from last year’s D Block battle that he needs to stay aggressively on message to sell his spectrum reforms.  His every speech on spectrum therefore reads like a campaign speech for incentive auctions. ‘We have a looming spectrum crisis, we need bold action, Congress must act now to pass incentive auctions.’ But, as Genachowski has discovered, this approach can have unintended consequences. Recently, Commissioner Robert McDowell reported that this focus on incentive auctions created uncertainty in Silicon Valley over the FCC’s commitment to the TV white spaces (TVWS).

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Why Unlimited Mobile-to-Mobile Calling is Evidence of a Lack of Wireless Competition

February 9, 2011 FCC , Mobile Communication , Spectrum Reform , TXTSMS , Wireless

Today AT&T announced that it was offering a new feature to some of its subscribers: unlimited calling to any mobile number.  This comes after the news that they were also offering free microcells  (little boxes that boost reception in your home) to some iPhone users, and that Verizon was offering unlimited wireless data to its own iPhone subscribers.  Why is this flood of enticements evidence that there is not very much competition between wireless companies?

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Three Potential Telecom “Black Swans” for 2011(None with Natalie Portman)

January 10, 2011 Broadband , FCC , Spectrum Licensing , Spectrum Reform , Wireless

So with 2010 finished and 2011 now thoroughly under way, it’s time to play Prognosticate Me! Mind you, anyone can predict “spectrum will remain a focus” and “USF reform will loom large.” The fun lies in trying to pick the surprises. So I have selected 3 potential “black swans” for 2011. The term comes from Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s book about the high impact of low probability events.

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NTIA Releases New Spectrum Report: Concludes Finding New Spectrum Is Hard.

November 15, 2010 Broadband , FCC , Spectrum Licensing , Spectrum Reform , Wireless

When the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released its National Broadband Plan (NBP) back in March, it focused very heavily on making 500 MHz of new spectrum available for broadband ove the next ten years. The Obama Administration endorsed this goal back in May, and ordered the relevant federal agency — Department of Commerce National Telecommunications Information Administration (NTIA) — to do a study on how to make this happen on the Federal side.

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Commissioner Baker Continues The Spectrum Discussion Started By Blair Levin

October 20, 2010 FCC , National Broadband Plan , Spectrum , Spectrum Reform , Wireless

Last year when Blair Levin first started talking about reclaiming broadcast spectrum for broadband (now known as the “incentive auction” proposal), he made it clear that the FCC needed to reexamine all of its existing spectrum allocations. “Everyone should be worried,” Levin responded to those who accused him of picking on broadcasters. Since then, however, the broadcast bands and federal bands have remained the focus for reallocation and auction.

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Nice Timing AT&T! Announces New Limits On Wireless Broadband Day After FCC Issues Public Notice on W

June 2, 2010 AT&T , Broadband , Data Caps , FCC , Spectrum Reform

The essence of comedy is timing. So I suppose it is fittng that AT&T, whose wireless network has been the punch line for Jon Stewart and other late night comics of late displayed rare comic timing by announcing it’s latest change in policy the day after the FCC issued a Public Notice asking the public to file comments on how to measure wireless broadband performance and coverage.

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What We Won In The National Broadband Plan

March 17, 2010 Broadband , FCC , Municipal Wi-Fi , Spectrum Reform , White Space

So now we’ve had National Broadband Plan Day!. And, despite undeniable flaws and places where the Plan Drafters wussed out/”avoided controversy,” The Plan looks pretty damn good, actually.

Let me stress that: Pretty . . . Damn . . . Good!

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Over-the-Air Viewers Left Out of NBC’s Online Future

February 24, 2010 MVPD , Spectrum , Spectrum Reform , TV Everywhere

NBC's Olympics coverage, both on TV and online, hasn't won high marks. Business Insider writes that NBC's TV coverage is "ruining the Olympics for millions of Americans." Harsh. Its Internet coverage is also unavailable to the millions of Americans who watch TV over the air, undermining NBC's position that broadcast television remains an important part of its business.

It seems that over-the-air viewers, who probably watch more ads per hour than DVR-addicted home theater types–not to mention cord-cutters and "Cable's Lost Generation"–are harder to monetize than cable, satellite, and telco video subscription customers.

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An Achievable Broadband Policy

January 28, 2010 Broadband , FCC , Spectrum Licensing , Spectrum Reform , USF

The National Broadband Plan is a chance for the FCC to articulate a vision for improving the deployment and adoption of broadband in the United States. In two sets of comments filed this week with the FCC, we highlight recommendations that would encourage new entry into broadband markets, and encourage the FCC to put its treatment of broadband on a firmer legal ground. Additionally, along with many other public interest groups, we're a signatory to this statement encouraging the FCC to adopt a bold, yet pragmatic policy for promoting broadband.

These issues are complex–it's hard to reduce broadband policy to a couple of key phrases. In general, the market structure for broadband services has been shaped by decades of conflicted public policy. We believe that this structure should be moved in a direction that promotes the entry of new broadband competitors. This post will summarize some key points from our separate filings.

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