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January 24, 2005, 9:00 AM ET, Alert No. 1,061.
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FCC Chairman Powell Announces Resignation

1/21. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Michael Powell announced that he sent a letter to President Bush stating that he will "step down ... some time in March".

Michael PowellPowell (at right) issued a statement [PDF] in which he wrote that "Today, I sent a letter to the President thanking him for the incredible privilege of chairing the Federal Communications Commission during his first term. With a mixture of pride and regret I informed him of my intention to step down as a commissioner and chairman some time in March."

Powell continued that "Having completed a bold and aggressive agenda, it is time for me to pursue other opportunities and let someone else take the reins of the agency. During my tenure, we worked to get the law right in order to stimulate innovative technology that puts more power in the hands of the American people, giving them greater choices that enrich their lives. Evidence of our success can be seen increasingly in the offices, the automobiles and the living rooms of the American consumer."

"The seeds of our policies are taking firm root in the marketplace and are starting to blossom. The use of cell phones, digital televisions, personal video recorders, and digital music players, is exploding.  These devices are increasingly connected anytime, anywhere by a wide variety of broadband networks enabling a host of competitive services and new applications", said Powell.

The FCC also released a document [5 pages in PDF] titled "Policy Highlights of Michael K. Powell's FCC Tenure".

Powell did not indicate what he plans to do in the future. President Bush has made no announcement regarding replacements. President Bush will nominate, subject to Senate confirmation, a Republican Commissioner to replace Powell. In addition, Commission Michael Copps' term will expire shortly. Bush could elevate either of the two remaining Republican Commissioners to Chairman, or name someone new to the position.

Republican FCC Commissioner Kevin Martin praised Powell in a statement [PDF] as "an advocate of new technologies". Republican Commissioner Kathleen Abernathy was more specific. "His myriad accomplishments are highlighted by his vigorous promotion of the digital migration across all industry segments. Thanks to his vision we now benefit from the deployment of new broadband networks that use fiber optics, powerlines, and various licensed and unlicensed wireless technologies. He has also led the charge to advance the digital television transition and recognized the importance of developing pro-innovation and pro-investment policies for Voice over IP."

Abernathy continued in her statement [PDF] that "When it comes to managing this country's valuable spectrum resource, Michael Powell was the first Chairman to engage in a comprehensive reform of outdated spectrum allocation rules. He implemented rule changes that are already yielding more efficient and productive uses of this critical resource. He has also undertaken several tremendously successful consumer initiatives, including the national do-not-call registry and wireless local number portability. Finally, he has worked tirelessly to improve public safety communications and strengthen homeland security."

Democratic Commissioner Michael Copps issued a statement [PDF] in which he praised Powell's knowledge, enthusiasm and honor, without commenting upon his policies, except to say that "he and I have had some differences on issues". Democratic Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein issued a statement [PDF] praising Powell that "I appreciate his commitment to facilitating the ``digital migration.´´"

Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK), the Chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, stated in a release that "I am saddened that Mike Powell will not be FCC Chair as we start the review of the '96 Act." He said that "Powell's vision of blending progress in technology with reduced Federal influence over the marketplace was a good approach."

Sen. Stevens added that "He always had an open mind to views expressed by oversight committees. And, he often invited me to attend sessions held at the FCC for the expression of views by persons involved in various aspects of communications -- sessions which I not only enjoyed but from which I learned more about the industries involved in regulated communications. It was those sessions, which led me to decide to hold similar ``listening sessions´´ as we start to review the '96 Act."

Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), the previous Chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, wrote that "Powell has spent the last eight years revolutionizing the telecommunications industry by championing new technologies and advocating competition."

Sen. McCain added that "Under his stewardship, the Commission's deregulatory decisions have increased investment in the telecommunications sector, allowing this segment of the economy to grow exponentially."

Praise from Free Market Groups. Adam Theier of the Cato Institute wrote that Powell "is the rarest of species -- a rational regulator who genuinely believes in the superiority of markets over mandates and capitalism over central planning".

"Powell worked hard to translate his market principles into action, occasionally meeting with some success, but more often being greeted by overt hostility from special interests and other status quo-oriented policymakers. One area where Powell’s vision yielded tangible results was spectrum policy where his leadership helped give rise to a veritable public policy revolution at the FCC. Powell formed a Spectrum Policy Task Force that issued an amazing report containing a sweeping indictment of the agency's past record. As a result, remarkable changes are underway at the agency that will unleash the wireless sector from the shackles of the command-and-control central planning techniques that have hindered it for over seven decades."

The Progress and Freedom Foundation (PFF) wrote that Powell "championed the principles of the free market in the digital age".

The PFF's Kyle Dixon, who was previously a legal advisor to Powell, stated that "Michael's greatest contribution since he took office in 1997 is that he made us understand the importance of the migration to digital communications ... Michael led the charge in promoting investment and innovation in Wi-Fi and wireless, Internet voice, broadband and other technologies that became critical to consumers and the economy."

Comments from Powell's Critics. Russell Frisby, CEO of the CompTel/ASCENT, a group that has differed with Powell on the Section 251 unbundling obligations of incumbent local exchange carriers, stated in a release that his organization "looks forward to working with the Chairman's successor". Frisby will soon leave the CompTel/ASCENT.

Gigi Sohn, President of Public Knowledge, a frequent critic of copyright protection, stated in a release that her group "has very mixed feelings about the resignation of Michael Powell ..."

Her group opposed, and has joined in a petition for review of, the FCC's broadcast flag order. She wrote that "However, as in the case of the hyper-regulatory ``broadcast flag,´´ he some times allowed politics to get in the way of his pro-tech and deregulatory philosophy. To the extent that we expect the next chair to share Mr. Powell’s philosophy, we hope that he or she will apply that philosophy consistently, even at the risk of angering large, powerful media companies." See, petitioners' brief [63 pages in PDF].

See also, Report and Order Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking [72 pages in PDF] and story titled "FCC Releases Broadcast Flag Rule" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 772, November 5, 2003. This item is FCC 03-273 in MB Docket 02-230. The U.S. Court of Appeals (DCCir) is scheduled to hear oral argument in this case, American Library Association v. FCC, No. 04-1037, on February 22.

Howard Stern said that Powell's departure is "a great thing". Stern's web site published excerpts from Stern's broadcast radio program of January 21. The FCC has imposed fines for violation of the provisions of the Communications Act and FCC rules regarding broadcast of indecent material.

Stern stated that "Michael Powell resigning is a great thing because he did not deserve the job in the first place. He was appointed because of his father."

He asserted that "Michael Powell then said let's put all the power into the hands of a couple of companies with radio and television." He condemned Powell for "fining me unbelievable amounts of money". Stern added that "that made him the hero of the religious right and the liberal left, who were all looking to win favor with the public by making it look like they were cleaning up the airwaves …"

He accused Powell of "ruining the first amendment, going back on his own words about how the market place should determine. Putting the radio stations in the hands of the few…and he forced radio stations, blackmailed radio stations into bowing to his will by telling them secretly, you are not going to any court! You are going to have your licenses held up! Shame on him! Shame on the FCC! Thank God he's gone, but God help us with what's next."

Comments from Trade Groups and Companies. Gary Shapiro, P/CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), stated in a release Powell "has been a true friend of technology". Shapiro added that "Chairman Powell knows that competition governed by fewer government rules benefits consumers and encourages progress. Governed by this philosophy, his legacy will include his commitment to and success in accelerating the nation's transition to digital television and broadband deployment. We also praise his efforts to free up wireless spectrum to allow for the development and deployment of exciting new products and technologies."

Steve Largent, P/CEO of the CTIA, stated in a release that "Consumers were always Michael’s top priority and he knew instinctively that they were best served when free and competitive markets were permitted to function. Michael did not allow the flawed policies of the past to burden our future ..."

Robert Sachs, P/CEO of the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA), stated in a release that Powell has been a "true champion of competitive market forces. ... Whether jump starting the digital TV transition or creating a regulatory environment that has allowed broadband Internet services to flourish, Michael Powell has been a major force in bringing the benefits of new technology to the American people."

See also, statement of Walter McCormick, P/CEO of the USTA, statement by Richard Notebaert, Ch/CEO of Qwest, and statement of Sprint.

FRB's Bernanke Addresses Productivity Growth and Information Technology

1/19. Federal Reserve Board (FRB) Governor Ben Bernanke gave a speech titled "Productivity" at a Council on Foreign Relations event. He addressed the relation between productivity growth and the advancement and use of information and communications technologies (ICT).

Others at the FRB and elsewhere have examined this subject, and generally concluded that the rapid growth in productivity in the U.S. in the last decade is related to ICT. See, for example, October 24, 2002 speech by FRB Vice Chairman Roger Ferguson titled "Productivity Growth: A Realistic Assessment", and story titled "FRB Vice Chairman Addresses Impact of Computer and Software Technology on Productivity Gains" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 535, October 25, 2002. See also, October 23, 2002 speech by FRB Chairman Alan Greenspan and story titled "Greenspan Addresses Productivity Gains and Technological Innovation" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 534, October 24, 2002.

Bernanke's speech examined this relationship in light of more recent information and analysis, and attempts to explain some puzzles that challenge the convention understanding, such as why productivity growth did not pick up until 1995, even though new computer equipment and applications had been around for over a decade, and why other countries that have been adopting ICT have not obtained the same productivity growth as the U.S.

Ben BernankeBernanke (at right) then attempted to forecast future growth in productivity, and discussed what all this means for monetary and economic policy makers.

He first noted that "From the early 1970s until 1995, productivity growth in the U.S. nonfarm business sector averaged about 1-1/2 percent per year", but that from 1995 to 2001 it rose to 2-1/2 percent per year, and then to an average of 4 percent since 2001.

He said that ICT advances productivity growth as firms in a wide range of industries expand their investments in high-tech equipment and software and use the new technologies to reduce costs and increase quality. "For example", said Bernanke, "some large retailers, most notably Walmart, developed ICT-based tools to improve the management of their supply chains and to increase their responsiveness to changes in the level and mix of customer demand. Securities brokers and dealers achieved substantial productivity gains by automating their trading processes and their back-office operations."

He conclude, "Undoubtedly, the ICT revolution and the productivity resurgence in the United States after 1995 were closely connected, but several puzzles have arisen that challenge the view that ICT investment leads mechanically to higher productivity."

First, he said, there is the puzzle of why productivity grew in the U.S., but grew less in other countries where there was significant investment in ICT, particularly in the European Union.

He related that one hypothesis is that "European economies have been less successful in applying new technologies because of a relatively heavy regulatory burden that inhibits flexibility. For example, taking full advantage of new information and communication technologies may require extensive reorganization of work practices and the reallocation of workers among firms and industries. Regulations that raise the cost of hiring and firing workers and reduce employers' ability to change work assignments, as exist in a number of European countries, may make such changes difficult to achieve. Likewise, the presence of government-owned firms with a degree of monopoly power, together with restrictions on the entry of new firms, may diminish competitive pressures that often foster innovation and greater efficiency".

However, he said this hypothesis does not explain why the United Kingdom, which has a regulatory burden similar to the U.S., does not match the U.S. in productivity growth. So, Bernanke stated several other hypotheses. "A shortage of workers with appropriate skills may be part of the problem in the United Kingdom, as average educational attainment in that country is lower than in many other industrial countries. Skill shortages may have also been a factor in continental Europe, possibly because high youth unemployment has reduced opportunities for workers to acquire new skills on the job. Other suggested explanations for the relatively better productivity performance of the United States in recent years include the depth and flexibility of U.S. capital markets, its relatively open immigration policies (at least before 9/11), and the role of U.S. research universities in fostering innovation." (Parentheses in original.)

Next, he examined why productivity grew at an increased rate only after the mid 1990s, even though the information technology revolution started much sooner. He suggested that "much more than the purchase of new high-tech equipment is needed to achieve significant gains in productivity. First, managers must have a carefully thought-out plan for using new technologies before they acquire them."

He also argued that "investments in high-tech capital typically require complementary investments in intangible capital for productivity gains to be realized, the benefits of high-tech investment may become visible only after a period of time." That is, "managers must supplement their purchases of new equipment with investments in research and development, worker training, and organizational redesign -- all examples of what economists call intangible capital." He added that this may also mean developing new relationships with suppliers, and modification of management systems, and all of this takes time.

Bernanke predicted, with great uncertainty, that "continued growth in productivity in the range of, say, 2 percent to 2-1/2 percent per year probably represents a good baseline assumption".

People and Appointments

1/21. President Bush announced his intent to nominate John Thomas Schieffer to be Ambassador to Japan. He is currently the U.S. Ambassador to Australia. Schieffer is a Texan who once worked for the Texas Rangers Baseball Club as Partner-in-Charge of Ballpark Development, President and General Partner. See, White House release.

1/21. Tracy Henke was named acting Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Department of Justice's (DOJ) Office of Justice Programs (OJP).

More News

1/21. The Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Wireless Telecommunications Bureau (WTB) announced that it "has initiated the development of an automated feature in its Universal Licensing System (ULS) to identify licenses that have terminated automatically for failure to meet construction or coverage requirements." See, Public Notice [PDF], DA 05-137.

1/21. The Copyright Office published a notice in the Federal Register stating that beginning on February 14, 2005, it will begin issuing newly formatted copyright registration certificates, but only for registration of motion pictures and other audiovisual works registered in class PA. See, Federal Register, January 21, 2005, Vol. 70, No. 13, at Pages 3231 - 3232.

1/10. Scott Hammond, the acting Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Criminal Enforcement in the Department of Justice's Antitrust Division, gave a speech in Hawaii titled "An Overview Of Recent Developments In The
Antitrust Division's Criminal Enforcement Program
". He discussed, among other topics, the DOJ's criminal action against Infineon Technologies, a manufacturer of dynamic random access memory (DRAM). See also, story titled "DOJ Charges Infineon With Felony Price Fixing; Infineon Pleads Guilty" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 978, September 16, 2004.

Washington Tech Calendar
New items are highlighted in red.
Monday, January 24

The House will not meet. See, Republican Whip Notice.

The Senate will meet at 2:00 PM for morning business. At 3:00 PM it will take up the nomination of Carlos Gutierrez to be Secretary of Commerce.

The Supreme Court will begin a recess. It will return from recess on February 22, 2005.

Extended deadline to submit reply comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in response to its notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) regarding service rules for advanced wireless services (AWS) in the 1915-1920 MHz, 1995-2000 MHz, 2175-2180 MHz and 1.7 GHz and 2.1 GHz bands. The FCC adopted this NPRM at its September 9, 2004 meeting, and released the text on September 24, 2004. It is FCC 04-218 in WT Docket No. 04-356 and WT Docket No. 02-353. See, original notice in the Federal Register, November 2, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 211, at Pages 63489-63498, and extension notice in the Federal Register, November 30, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 229, at Pages 69572 - 69573. See also, story titled "FCC Makes Additional 20 MHz of Spectrum Available for Advanced Wireless Services" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 975, September 13, 2004.

Tuesday, January 25

The House will meet at 2:00 PM for legislative business. It will consider several non technology related items under suspension of the rules. Votes will be postponed until 6:30 PM. See, Republican Whip Notice.

7:30 AM. The Information Technology Association of America (ITAA) will host a breakfast seminar titled "Expediting the Security Clearance Process: New Law, New Opportunities for Federal Contractors". See, ITAA notice. For more information, contact Shannon Zelsnack at Prices range from $50 to $95. Location: Sheraton Premiere Tysons Corner Hotel.

10:00 AM - 12:00 NOON. The Department of State's International Telecommunication Advisory Committee (ITAC) will meet to prepare for the Organization of American States' (OAS) Inter-American Telecommunication Commission's (CITEL) Permanent Consultative Committee II meeting in Guatemala to be held in April 2005. See, notice in the Federal Register, December 30, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 250, at Pages 78515-78516. For more information, including the location, contact Cecily Holiday at or Anne Jillson at Location: undisclosed.

12:15 PM. The Federal Communications Bar Association's (FCBA) Young Lawyers Committee will host a brown bag lunch. The topic will be "The Basics of IP-Television: Technology and Regulation". The speakers will be engineers from the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Media Bureau (MB), and representatives of SBC Communications and the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA). For more information, contact Jason Friedrich at or 202 354-1340 or Ryan Wallach at or 202 303-1159. Location: Willkie Farr & Gallagher, 1875 K Street, NW, Second Floor.

2:00 - 4:00 PM. The American Enterprise Institute (AEI) will host a panel discussion title "Class Action Reform: How Far and How Fast?". The speakers will be Robert Gasaway (Kirkland & Ellis), George Priest (Yale Law School), David McIntosh (Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw), and Michael Greve (AEI). See, notice. Location: AEI, 12th floor, 1150 17th St., NW.

TIME? The Judicial Conference of the United States (JC) will hold a public hearing on its proposed amendment to Appellate Rule 25 regarding electronic filings. The JC has proposed amendments to Civil Rule 5, Appellate Rule 25, and Bankruptcy Rule 5005. Each of these proposed amendments would permit the applicable court, by local rules, to "permit or require papers to be filed, signed, or verified by electronic means" (or similar language). Current rules provide that the applicable court may "permit" filing by electronic means. See, JC notice [PDF] and notice in the Federal Register, Federal Register, December 2, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 231, at Page 70156. Location: undisclosed.

Wednesday, January 26

The House will meet at 10:00 AM for legislative business. No technology related items are on the agenda. See, Republican Whip Notice.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will hold a Broadband PCS Spectrum Auction. This is Auction No. 58. This auction had previously been scheduled for January 12, 2005. See, notice [3 pages in PDF].

8:00 AM. The Federal Communications Bar Association (FCBA) will host a breakfast with Rep. Chip Pickering (R-MS), Vice Chairman of the House Commerce Committee. For more information, contact at Location: J.W. Marriott Hotel, 1331 Pennsylvania Ave., NW.

9:30 AM. The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold an executive business meeting. It is scheduled to consider the nomination of Alberto Gonzales to be Attorney General. See, Committee notice. Location: Room 226, Dirksen Building.

10:00 AM. The House Commerce Committee will hold a hearing titled "Combating Spyware: HR 29, the SPY Act". This hearing will be webcast by the Committee. See, notice. Location: Room 2123, Rayburn Building.

10:00 AM. The Senate Committee on Aging will hold a hearings to examine the risks and benefits associated with internet pharmacy and importation. Location: Room 628, Dirksen Building.

10:00 AM. The Senate Banking Committee will hold an organizational meeting. The Committee will consider its rules, subcommittee structure, and funding. Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL) will preside. See, notice. Location: Room 538, Dirksen Building.

10:00 AM. The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee will hold a hearing titled "The Department of Homeland Security: The Road Ahead". See, notice. Location: Room 342, Dirksen Building.

12:00 NOON - 1:30 PM. The DC Bar Association will host a brown bag lunch titled "International Aspects of Criminal Antitrust Enforcement". The speakers will be Lisa Phelan (Chief of the Department of Justice's Antitrust Division's National Criminal Enforcement Section) and Anthony Nanni (Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson). See, notice. Prices vary from $5 to $10. For more information, call 202 626-3463. Location: Fried Frank, 1001 Pennsylvania Ave., NW.

12:00 NOON - 1:30 PM. The DC Bar Association will host a brown bag lunch titled "I’m an IP attorney, how can I do pro bono work?". The speakers will be Mary Kennedy (Finnegan Henderson) and Maureen Syracuse (Director of the DC Bar Association's Pro Bono Program). See, notice. Prices vary from $5 to $10. For more information, contact Rebecca McNeill 202 408-4086 or Location: Finnegan Henderson, 901 New York Ave., NW.

4:00 - 5:45 PM. The American Enterprise Institute (AEI) will host a panel discussion title "Trade Policy: The Next Four Years". The speakers will be Lael Brainard (Brookings Institution), Edward Gresser (Progressive Policy Institute), Gary Hufbauer (Institute for International Economics), Brink Lindsey (Cato Institute), and Claude Barfield (AEI). See, notice. Location: AEI, 12th floor, 1150 17th St., NW.

6:00 - 8:15 PM. The Federal Communications Bar Association (FCBA) will host continuing legal education (CLE) seminar titled "An Overview of Contract Drafting". Location: Dow Lohnes & Albertson, 1200 New Hampshire Ave. NW.

Thursday, January 27

No votes are scheduled in the House. See, Republican Whip Notice.

12:00 NOON. The Federal Communications Bar Association's (FCBA) State and Local Practice Committee will host a brown bag seminar titled "Current State Regulatory Issues: An Update". The speakers will be Tom Pugh (Commissioner of the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission), Beth Keating (attorney, Florida Public Service Commission), Robert Mayer (New York Public Service Commission), and Tammy Cooper (Administrative Law Judge, Texas Public Utility Commission). For more information, contact Erick Soriano at 202 939-7921 or Location: Fleischman & Walsh, 1919 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Suite 600.

12:00 NOON - 1:30 PM. The DC Bar Association will host a brown bag lunch titled "Current Topics in Entertainment Law: Anti-Piracy and Film Financing Incentives". The speakers will be David Green (Motion Picture Association of America) and Michele LeBlanc (LeBlanc & Associates), and Aoi Nawashiro (Browdy & Neimark). See, notice. Prices vary from $20 to $30. For more information, call 202 626-3463. Location: D.C. Bar Conference Center, B-1 Level, 1250 H St., NW.

10:00 AM. The Department of State's International Telecommunication Advisory Committee (ITAC) will meet to prepare for the International Telecommunications Union's ITU-T Study Group 17 (security, languages and telecommunication software) meeting, and the ITU-T Study Group 4 (telecommunication management). See, the ITU's calendar of meetings. See, notice in the Federal Register, December 20, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 243, at Page 76027. Location: Communication Technologies, Inc. (COMTek), 14151 Newbrook Dr., Suite 400, Chantilly, VA.

2:00 - 4:00 PM. The Department of State's International Telecommunication Advisory Committee will meet to discuss the meeting of the ITU Council's Ad Hoc Group on Cost Recovery for Satellite Network Filings that will take place March 21-22, 2005 in Geneva, Switzerland. See, notice in the Federal Register, January 13, 2005, Vol. 70, No. 9, at Page 2450. Location: Room 6 South (6B516), Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th St., SW.

2:00 PM. The Information Technology Association of America (ITAA) will host an event titled "Michelin Worldwide: Rolling with an RFID Strategy". See, notice. For more information, contact Eerik Kreek, This event will be webcast only.

4:00 PM. Scott Kieff (Washington University's St. Louis School of Law) will present a draft paper titled "Introducing a Case Against Copyright: A Comparative Institutional Analysis of Intellectual Property Regimes". See, abstract of paper, and notice of event. This event is part of the Spring 2005 Intellectual Property Workshop Series sponsored by the Dean Dinwoodey Center for Intellectual Property Studies at the George Washington University Law School (GWULS). For more information, contact Robert Brauneis at 202 994-6138 or The event is free and open to the public. Location: GWULS, Faculty Conference Center, Burns Building, 5th Floor, 716 20th St., NW.

4:00 PM. The Cato Institute will host a book forum on Seth Mnookin's book titled Hard News: The Scandals at The New York Times and Their Meaning for American Media [Amazon]. The speakers will be Mnookin and Jack Shafer (Slate). A reception will follow the event. See, notice. Location: Cato, 1000 Massachusetts Ave., NW.

TIME? There will be a meeting of the Executive Office of the President's (EOP) Office of Science and Technology Policy's (OSTP) National Science and Technology Council's (NSTC) Committee on Science's Subcommittee on Research Business Methods. The meeting is closed to the public. For more information, contact Megan Columbus at 301 435-0937. Location: undisclosed.

Extended deadline to file with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) first round DTV channel election forms. This proceeding is titled "In the matter of Second Periodic Review of the Commission’s Rules and Policies Affecting the Conversion To Digital Television". This is MB Docket No. 03-15. See, FCC order extending deadline [PDF].

Effective date of the Copyright Office's final rule regarding reconsideration procedure. See, notice in the Federal Register, December 28, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 248, at Pages 77636 - 77637.

Friday, January 28

No votes are scheduled in the House. See, Republican Whip Notice.

Deadline to submit to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) replies to oppositions to petitions to deny the applications of NextWave Telecom and Cellco Partnership dba Verizon Wireless for FCC approval of their proposed transfer of control of broadband Personal Communications Services (PCS) licenses from NextWave to Cellco. See, FCC notice [4 pages in PDF]. This notice is DA 04-3873 in WT Docket No. 04-434.

Extended deadline to submit reply comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in response to the FCC's public notice regarding BellSouth's petition for forbearance from certain Title II and Computer Inquiry requirements. This proceeding is WC Docket No. 04-405. See, notice of extension [PDF].

EXTENDED TO MARCH 14. Deadline to submit reply comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in response to its Public Notice [4 pages in PDF] (DA 04-3891) of December 14, 2004 seeking comments on the report of Avatar Environmental, LLC regarding migratory bird collisions with communications towers. See, Public Notice [2 pages in PDF] (DA 04-4021) of December 22, 2004 extending deadlines. This proceeding is WT Docket No. 03-187.

Monday, January 31

12:30 PM. Eliot Spitzer, Attorney General of New York, will give a luncheon address. Location: National Press Club, 529 14th St. NW, 13th Floor.

Extended deadline to submit reply comments to Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in response to its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) [38 pages in PDF] regarding use by unlicensed devices of broadcast television spectrum where the spectrum is not in use by broadcasters. See, story titled "FCC Adopts NPRM Regarding Unlicensed Use of Broadcast TV Spectrum" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 898, May 14, 2004, and story titled "FCC Releases NPRM Regarding Unlicensed Use of TV Spectrum" in TLJ Daily E-Mail Alert No. 905, May 26, 2004. This NPRM is FCC 04-113 in ET Docket Nos. 04-186 and No. 02-380. See, notice (setting original deadlines) in the Federal Register, June 18, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 117, at pages 34103-34112; first notice [PDF] of extended deadlines; erratum [PDF]; and December 22, 2004 Public Notice [PDF] (DA 04-4013) further extending the deadline for reply comments to January 31.

Deadline to submit comments to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in response to its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) regarding disseminate information to investors during the securities offering process. The NPRM states that "Significant technological advances over the last three decades have increased both the market's demand for more timely corporate disclosure and the ability of issuers to capture, process, and disseminate this information. Computers, sophisticated financial software, electronic mail, teleconferencing, videoconferencing, webcasting, and other technologies available today have replaced, to a large extent, paper, pencils, typewriters, adding machines, carbon paper, paper mail, travel, and face-to-face meetings relied on previously. Our evaluation of the securities offering process and procedural enhancements seeks to recognize the integral role that technology plays in timely informing the markets and investors about important corporate information and developments."

Deadline to submit applications and nominations to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for membership on the FCC's Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC). See, Public Notice [PDF] (DA 04-3892) and notice in the Federal Register, December 29, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 249, at Pages 78024 - 78025.

Deadline to submit comments to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative's (USTR) Trade Policy Staff Committee (TPSC) regarding "general U.S. negotiating objectives as well as country-, product-, and service-specific priorities for the multilateral negotiations and work program in the Doha Development Agenda (DDA) negotiations conducted under the auspices of the World Trade Organization". See, notice in the Federal Register, December 9, 2004, Vol. 69, No. 236, at Pages 71466 - 71468.

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