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NAB Warns of ‘Novel Policy Issues’ in XM/WCS Deal

NAB Warns of 'Novel Policy Issues' in XM/WCS Deal

NAB has urged the FCC to sideline XM Satellite Radio’s application to acquire WCS Wireless, saying that since the satcaster has not really said what it would do with the spectrum, neither the FCC nor outsiders can tell whether the deal would serve the public interest.
In reply comments to the FCC the broadcast association argues that WCS Wireless still appears to be violating the commission’s trafficking rules. “It offers no response to many of the facts NAB pointed out in its petition, most notably that WCS Wireless bought half of the relevant licenses only four months ago,” NAB wrote.
NAB believes XM would use the spectrum to provide local service and bundle that with its national service.
The satcaster told the FCC it would use the wireless frequencies to provide “new subscription mobile multimedia services.” These would not be broadcast services because they are not free, argued XM.
The previously announced deal needs FCC approval. If okayed, NAB has asked the agency to include a specific condition to protect terrestrial broadcasters.