Michael Copps, the former FCC commissioner, tells C-SPAN’s The Communicators that a complete spectrum inventory is needed, which he believe will reveal that there’s a “whole bunch of spectrum lying fallow that could fuel a whole lot of devices and fuel a whole lot of technology.”
Former FCC Commissioner, Michael Copps, in remarks made in an interview for the C-SPAN series The Communicators said he thinks there is an abundance of spectrum lying fallow.
“There is a lot of spectrum out there, and I don’t think anybody in the United States has very much of a clue exactly how much spectrum is lying fallow,” he.
Copps said a complete spectrum inventory is needed, which he believe will reveal that there’s a “whole bunch of spectrum lying fallow that could fuel a whole lot of devices and fuel a whole lot of technology.”
The Advanced Television Broadcasting Alliance said it couldn’t agree more. The Alliance has previously called for the FCC to release to AOM (allotment optimization model) that FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski said would be released upon authorization to conduct spectrum auctions. That authorization came in the recently signed Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act. “It is time
for the release of the AOM and a full spectrum inventory,” the Alliance said.
While Copps said he hoped the commission would expedite incentive auctions, he said he was not comfortable with taking spectrum from one consolidated medium (broadcasters) to give it to another (wireless).
The Alliance said it has favored broadcasters working together with wireless companies to effectively use portions of the broadcast spectrum.
Utilizing new technology, the Alliance said, the Broadcast Overlay plan, as it’s called, “would answer the wireless industry’s need for more spectrum and generate substantial revenues for the federal government over that which would be received through an auction.”
Copps also said he was concerned about the impact of the auctions and TV station repacking would have on noncommercial and smaller, diverse, stations. “There are almost so many unintended consequences when you do something that is this broad,” he said.
Alliance Executive Director Irwin Podhajser said: “It is heartening to see that an FCC commissioner is speaking up about the potential impact to smaller diverse stations. It has been our contention through this whole process that the auction/repack plan is simply bad policy that will not raise the desired revenue and will not solve the wireless broadband issues of our country. It will be bad for broadcasters, smaller wireless companies and consumers. It is time for us to create more choices and competition, not entrench a few large wireless monopolies.”