|Boxer and Allen to Propose Legislation to Require
Allocation of Unlicensed Spectrum
|11/19. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA)
and Sen. George Allen (R-VA) have
prepared a Staff
Working Draft of
a bill to be named the "Jumpstart Broadband Act". It would require the
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to
allocate 255 megahertz of contiguous spectrum below 6
gigahertz for unlicensed use by wireless broadband devices.
The two Senators plan to introduce the bill next year.
The bill would require the FCC to promptly reallocate spectrum. It states
that "Within 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Commission shall
allocate not less than 255 megahertz of contiguous spectrum below 6 gigahertz
for unlicensed use by wireless broadband devices while ensuring that Department
of Defense devices and systems are not compromised."
This bill would impose a tall task upon the FCC. 255 MHz is a large block of
spectrum. Reallocating contiguous spectrum makes the task for the FCC all the
more difficult. Moreover, the FCC would have to relocate incumbent users, most
of whom would resist any effort to reallocate spectrum assigned to them. Usually
it takes the FCC years, if not decades, to reallocate spectrum.
The bill would also require the National Telecommunication and Information
Administration (NTIA) to "establish standards for interference protection"
within 180 days.
Finally, the bill would require the FCC to write rules "to require that all
wireless broadband devices manufactured after the effective date of those rules
that operate in the spectrum ... (i) be capable of 2-way data packet communication;
(ii) be designed and manufactured to maximize spectrum efficiency, to use the
minimum power necessary to provide broadband service, and to minimize
interference; and (iii) meet the interference protection standards ..."
That is, the bill would give the FCC authority to regulate
technology standards for computers.
Sen. Allen (at right) is a member of the
Senate Commerce Committee, and its
Communications Subcommittee, which will likely have jurisdiction over the bill
once it is introduced in the 108th Congress. He is also Chairman of the
Senate Republican High Tech Task
The two Senators also circulated a
Dear Colleague letter to other members of
the Senate. In it they wrote that "much of the current debate in Congress over
broadband services has focused on two platforms, cable and DSL, and whether we
should support competition versus deregulation of telecommunications as the best
mechanism for encouraging broadband deployment. This debate has reached an
unproductive stalemate and fails to consider that other technologies are
available that can jump start consumer driven investment and demand in broadband
Sen. Boxer (at right) is also a member of the two panels responsible for
communications related legislation and oversight.
The two further stated in their letter to other Senators that "The innovations and advances in the development of unlicensed wireless,
radio based networks, currently referred to as Wi-Fi offer an additional means
of delivering data at high speed and also allow new business models for
delivering broadband connectivity to emerge. These emerging unlicensed wireless
technologies can support the transmission of data at high speeds and at low
cost. This is especially compelling in rural areas where distance is so
frequently the enemy of wire-line networks and the primary reason for the high
cost of rural broadband deployment."
|People and Appointments
|11/20. Afshin Mohebbi, Qwest's P/COO, will resign, effective December 31, 2002. See,
|11/20. U.S. Trade Representative (USTR)
Robert Zoellick spoke with reporters in Manilla. See,
He touched on the just announced agreement in substance between the U.S. and Singapore on a
free trade agreement. He also discussed trade negotiations with the Philippines.
He stated that "we've been working with the Philippines to strengthen
intellectual property protection and enforcement, and if we can make some
headway on that, that will make it easier to get into a free trade agreement."
He was also asked if the Philippines would "have to be out of the IPR watchlist, even
before you consider negotiating with us for an FTA?" He responded, "We haven't
set any pre-conditions."
11/20. The Copyright Office published a
in the Federal Register requesting "written comments and proposals for the
scheduling of Copyright Arbitration Royalty Panel (CARP) proceedings to adjust
royalty rates and terms under provisions of the Copyright Act governing
ephemeral recordings and digital transmissions of performances of sound
recordings, as well as notices of intent to participate in the CARP to set rates
and terms under the statutory license for eligible nonsubscription services to
make certain digital audio transmissions of sound recordings for the 2003-2004
period." Notices of intent to participate are due by December 23, 2002. Comments
and proposals for the scheduling of the CARP proceedings are due by December 2,
2002. See, Federal Register, November 20, 2002, Vol. 67, No. 224, at Pages 70093
11/19. Rep. John Conyers (D-MI)
introduced HR 5760, a bill to create a commission on Internet gambling licensing
and regulation. It was referred to the House Judiciary Committee and the House
|Thanksgiving Publication Schedule
|The Tech Law Journal Daily E-Mail Alert will not be published on Wednesday, November
27, Thursday, November 28, or Friday, November 29.
|Thursday, November 21
|8:30 AM - 4:30 PM. The Commerce Department's
Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS)
will host a seminar titled "Technology Export Controls". It will cover
compliance with the U.S. export and reexport controls relating to technology,
software and encryption. The price to attend is $150. See,
notice. For more information, contact Yvette Springer at 202 482-6031.
Location: Grand Hyatt Washington, 1000 H. Street, NW.
12:15 PM. The
FCBA's Global Telecommunications Development Committee and International
Practice Committee will host a brown bag lunch. The topic will be "Financing
Telecom Projects in Developing Countries: The Role of OPIC, Export Import
Bank, and the International Finance Corporation (IFC)". The speakers will be
Roger Cohen (Export Import Bank), Brian Christaldi (OPIC), and Jean-Francois
Dupuy (IFC). For more information, contact Janet Hernandez at 202 736-1814.
RSVP to Julie Ilett at firstname.lastname@example.org
or 202 736-1819. Location: Coudert Brothers, 1627 Eye St., NW, 11th floor.
12:15 PM. The
FCBA's Cable Practice Committee will host a brown bag lunch. The speakers
will be John Wong and Michael Lance (Division Chief and Deputy Division Chief
of the FCC Media Bureau's Engineering Division). For more information call
Lisa Cordell at 202 939-7934. RSVP to Wendy Parish at
wendy @fcba.org. Location: NCTA, 1724
Massachusetts Ave., NW.
3:00 PM. Uma
Suthersanen will speak on "Copyright and Human Rights in Europe". She
is a Senior Research Fellow at the Queen
Mary Intellectual Property Research Institute in London. For more
information, contact Robert Brauneis at
email@example.com or 202
994-6138. Location: Faculty Conference Center, 5th Floor of Burns, George
Washington University Law School, 2000 H Street, NW.
6:30 - 10:00 PM. The
FCBA will host a charity auction. For more information, contact Heidi
Kurtz (FCBA) at 202 293-4000. Admission is free, and it is open to the public.
The event features a live auction, silent auctions, raffles, hours d’oeuvres
and a cash bar. Location: Capitol
Hilton Hotel, 16th and K Streets, NW.
|Friday, November 22
|Deadline to submit comments to the
ultrawideband report [110 pages in PDF] titled "Measured Emissions Data For Use In
Evaluating The Ultra-Wideband (UWB) Emissions Limits in the Frequency Bands
Used By The Global Positioning System". See also, FCC
public notice [3 pages in PDF]. The report was prepared by Stephen Jones
of the FCC's Office of Engineering and
Technology. He can be contacted at 301 362-2054 or
SKJones@fcc.gov. This is ET Docket No.
DEADLINE EXTENDED TO DECEMBER 9.
Deadline to submit comments to the The
in response to its requests for comments regarding whether to revise, clarify
or adopt any additional rules in order to more effectively carry out
Congress's directives in the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (TCPA).
notice in the Federal Register. See,
of extension [PDF].
Deadline to submit a request to participate in roundtable meetings hosted
by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)
regarding small business views on foreign patent challenges. The USPTO
is seeking comments, and holding roundtable meetings, pursuant to a
recommendation contained in a General Accounting
Office (GAO) report
[PDF] titled "Federal Action Needed to Help Small Businesses Address Foreign
Patent Challenges". This report was released on August 22, 2002. See also,
story titled "GAO Reports Foreign Patent Challenges Facing Small Businesses"
in TLJ Daily
E-Mail Alert No. 497, August 23, 2002. See,
notice in the Federal Register, October 28, 2002, Vol. 67, No.208, at
Pages 65786 - 65787.
|Monday, November 25
|Deadline to submit comments to the The
National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA)
regarding the product recall notices exception to the Electronic Signatures in
Global and National Commerce (E-SIGN) Act. The Act provides, at §101, for the
acceptance of electronic signatures in interstate commerce, with certain
enumerated exceptions. §103 of the Act provides that "The provisions of
section 101 shall not apply to ... (2) any notice of ... (D) recall of a
product, or material failure of a product, that risks endangering health or
safety". The Act also requires the NTIA to review, evaluate and report to
Congress on each of the exceptions. See,
notice in the Federal Register.
|Tuesday, November 26
|2:00 - 4:00 PM. The Bureau of Industry
and Security's (BIS) National Infrastructure Advisory Council (NIAC) will
hold a partly open, and partly closed, meeting. The NIAC advises the President
on the security of
information systems for critical infrastructure supporting other sectors of
the economy, including banking and finance, transportation, energy,
manufacturing, and emergency government services. The agenda of this meeting
includes deliberation regarding comments received on the draft document
titled "National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace". (Comments were due by
November 18.) The scheduled speakers include Richard Davidson (Director of NIAC), Richard Clarke,
Juster (Director of BIS). For more information contact Eric Werner at 202
notice in the
federal register. Location: Truman Room, White House
Conference Center, 726 Jackson Place, NW.
|Wednesday, November 27
|The Tech Law Journal Daily E-Mail Alert will not be
published, for a Thanksgiving break.
|Thursday, November 28
|Thanksgiving Day. The FCC will be closed. The TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert
will not be published.
|About Tech Law Journal
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