Friday, December 21, 2007

Kevin Martin's Top 10 Predictions for the 700 MHz Auction

Courtesy of Susan Crawford:

FCC Chairman Kevin Martin’s Top Ten Predictions for the 700 MHz Auction:

# 10. AT&T will say the outcome proves network neutrality is not necessary.

# 9. Google will say the outcome proves network neutrality is necessary.

# 8. NAB will say the outcome proves the XM-Sirius deal should be rejected.

# 7. I will say the outcome proves the country needs à la carte.

# 6. Congress will spend the auction receipts 10 times over before we cash the checks.

# 5. No matter how fast the D Block licensee builds out the public safety network, Commissioner Copps will say it was too slow.

# 4. Even if AT&T and Verizon bid against each other, costing each other billions, Consumers Union will claim they conspired to rig the bidding.

# 3. No matter who wins the A, B, C, D, and E license blocks, they will all end up suing Vonage for patent infringement.

# 2. If anything goes wrong, I will blame the subprime mortgage crisis.

# 1. If anything goes wrong, everyone else will blame me.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

UPDATE: FCC Boss Under Scrutiny for Management Tactics

FCC Chairman Martin has dutifully responded to House Commerce Committee Chairman Dingell's recent inquiry regarding the management tactics employed by the chief of the nations wireless communications regulatory agency.

For those interested, here is Chairman Martin's 56 page initial reply.

Happy reading.



Monday, December 10, 2007

SDR, CR, DSA, & the 700 MHz Public Safety Band

The folks at the SDR Forum have released a new 23 page report addressing "Considerations and Recommendations for Software Defined Radio Technologies for the 700 MHz Public/Private Partnership" (Technology for 700 MHz Spectrum - Report # SDRF-07-R-0024-V1.0.0) just in time for review prior to the upcoming FCC auction.

Here's a summary:

The report describes how software defined radio (SDR) technologies can help achieve the public/private partnership goals of the upcoming U.S. FCC 700 MHz frequency band spectrum auction. This report also covers cognitive radio (CR) and dynamic spectrum access (DSA) technologies as well.

The context for the report is the Second Report and Order (FCC 07-132, released 10 August 2007) which establishes rules governing wireless licenses in the 700 MHz band. The SDR Forum
is uniquely positioned to consider the role of these new technologies in the 700 MHz band since its membership includes commercial mobile radio service providers, public safety representatives, technology developers, systems integrators and equipment manufacturers.

The information and recommendations in the report focusus on technology and related policy
considerations to (a) prospective bidders and service providers, (b) potential grantees of the Public Safety Broadband License, (c) equipment manufacturers, and (d) regulators.

Emerging SDR & CR technologies, along with DSA (
or DSM - Dynamic Spectrum Management) are believed to be the future of wireless communications.

The report is well worth the time to read for those interested or concerned with spectrum matters.



Saturday, December 8, 2007

FCC Boss Under Scrutiny for Management Tactics

"Martin's Management at FCC Under Scrutiny" is the "shocking" headline of a news report by Jeffrey Silva recently. It seems that the House Commerce Committee has launched an investigation into Federal Communications Commission Chairman Kevin Martin's management of the agency.

"Procedural breakdowns at the agency tasked with overseeing communications laws for our entire nation jeopardize the public interest it is bound to serve," said House Commerce Committee Chairman John Dingell (D-Mich.). "Our nation is founded on fair, open and transparent government, and the Federal Communications Commission is certainly no exception. When that openness and transparency is compromised, so too is public confidence in the agency."

In a letter to Martin, Dingell asked the FCC chief to commit in writing by Dec. 10 to publish proposed rules in advance of FCC meetings, and to provide sufficient time to review proposed orders and rules. In addition, Dingell wants Martin to agree to provide other commissioners with all data and information on which those proposed orders and rules are based.

The two Democrats on the GOP-led FCC, Michael Copps and Jonathan Adelstein, have been particularly critical of Martin's oversight of the agency; however, complaints about Martin's stewardship have not been confined to the two telecom regulators.

"I have received several complaints from the public and professionals within the communications industry about how Chairman Martin is conducting business at the FCC," said Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.), chairman of the Commerce subcommittee on oversight and investigations. "It is one thing to be an aggressive leader, but many of the allegations indicate possible abuse of power and an attempt to intentionally keep fellow commissioners in the dark. I look forward to investigating these concerns to be sure that the FCC chairman is not disenfranchising his fellow commissioners and the American public he is supposed to serve." was previously reported here, perhaps the GAO auditors should join forces with Dingell's committee and dig a bit deeper; so far, they've only scratched the surface of what many believe may be a much larger management problem within this agency.