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Auction 73 - The Biggest Little Auction You Never Heard Of - A Non-Fiction [WRAP]

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posted on Feb, 6 2011 @ 10:15 PM

Part 1 - Auction 73

We live in the communications age. It is probably the greatest advancement of mankind yet. It could be used for educating the world, learning and appreciating other cultures and languages while creating countless jobs worldwide. For once, we as a planet are able to talk as a whole, instantly and have access to the entire knowledge base of mankind. This is an amazing time. Will it be used for this or will it be used for profit. For the public good is bad for business you know...

The last analog television station went off the air 2009 in the U.S. freeing up the RF Spectrum for more advanced digital technology including digital television and broadband internet. Lot's more info used on the same frequencies.

There was a very important FCC Government Auction in 2008 for the license to use these airwaves called Auction 73.

My curious mind first started to wonder some years back, why the digital tv transition and high speed internet for everyone all of the sudden?

Scared of alien capture of analog signals sent through space and want cousin Freddy to be able to educate himself about god knows what out in the sticks? No. There must be a more terrestrial reason.

They want to implement some kind of control grid to regulate energy consumption to homes through the use of energy smart devices and smart meters along with connections to everyone's house and persons via phones to do who knows what? Total information. eh maybe

They want to better the lives of human kind and create new business by bringing high speed internet to the masses at the cheapest, most logical efficient means as possible?

That must be it!

But wait, the infrastructure is already in place to connect every powered structure in the world to 1gb internet service. hmmm...

This is going to be long, techy, mundane, and seemingly pointless at first. Most clandestine operations that affect us in a huge way are. And they are usually glossed over with official names like Auction 73.

This affects all of us so read on.

Technology rules every part of our lives now. All Commerce, Information, Power distribution, Security, everything is on the network. You think the government wants to bring digital TV and high speed broadband to your grandmother in rural Kansas so she can watch well hoaxed UFO videos on Youtube. Think again.

How about this, what you are getting is a piece of garbage that is presented to make you believe that is good for you and your safety while making billions in the process. Hearts and Minds. Business as usual.

The FCC is playing ball with AT&T and Verizon lobbyist , to keep the infrastructure monopolized, keep prices way up, keeping new technologies and entrepreneurship suppressed, getting a brand new Nationwide " Public Safety" Emergency Broadband System, keeping the network slower than possible, Implementing an energy smart grid to regulate the power you consume (by the way, the current electrical grid we have is more than capable of delivering power and full duplex 1gb internet right now to every house in America, more on that later) and giving TARP funds to help implement the new systems. Go figure, the companies receiving the TARP funds are signing contracts with the Giants that won the auctions to broadcast over the airwaves.

But this is not what is the media and the government (it's hard to tell the difference between anymore) is making it out to be, as usual, it is the best thing for the American people since apple pie.

Google inc. was trying to make this a consumer winning venture. They failed, partly, and it's business as usual in Washington. While the lobbyist, politicians and which "person" aka corporation who pays the most wins while we lose.

Did I mention there is a nifty new Public Safety Wireless Broadband System.pdf that AT&T, Verizon and TARP will pay for (via your Iphone and your taxes) and hopefully maintain tucked in there too? DHS and FEMA have total control of all commercial and public safety frequencies of internet and TV in times of emergency. Flips switch. (updated) taps touchscreen.

I am sure we will have the same crap programming and nonstop commercials we have now, just a hunch.

Never heard of Auction

Neither had I, It went unnoticed in 2008 just before the digital tv transition was complete.

The United States 700 MHz FCC wireless spectrum auction, officially known as Auction 73,[1] was started by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on January 24, 2008 for the rights to operate the 700 MHz frequency band in the United States. The details of process were the subject of debate among several telecommunications companies, including Verizon Wireless, AT&T, as well as the Internet company Google. Much of the debate swirled around the "open access" requirements set down by the Second Report and Order released by the FCC determining the process and rules for the auction. All bidding was required by law to commence by January 28.

The last transmissions by the incumbent television broadcasters using this spectrum ceased on June 12, 2009 except for LPTV (Low Power TV) stations, which can stay on the air with an analog signal until the winning bidders start operations. Full power TV stations ceased analog broadcasting on June 12, 2009.

This is not new. This is how all governments have always done business , they sell the radio spectrum to broadcasters. They sell the right to use the radio waves (or air) over their territory. The difference now has to do current technology and how much info they can pack into the radio spectrum now with digital tv and broadband. its a New Frontier, The Wild West, A good opportunity that will not go to waste. By Bye analog tv your cramming up good space.

President Barak Obama recently talked about the need of bringing High Speed Internet to rural communities in the 2011 SOTU Address:

Within the next five years, we’ll make it possible for businesses to deploy the next generation of high-speed wireless coverage to 98 percent of all Americans. This isn’t just about faster Internet or fewer dropped calls. It’s about connecting every part of America to the digital age. It’s about a rural community in Iowa or Alabama where farmers and small business owners will be able to sell their products all over the world. It’s about a firefighter who can download the design of a burning building onto a handheld device; a student who can take classes with a digital textbook; or a patient who can have face-to-face video chats with her doctor.

Google Inc. tried to get four very important requirements in the auction that would guarantee:

  1. Open applications: Consumers should be able to download and utilize any software applications, content, or services they desire;

  2. Open devices: Consumers should be able to utilize a handheld communications device with whatever wireless network they prefer

  3. Open services: Third parties (resellers) should be able to acquire wireless services from a 700 MHz licensee on a wholesale basis, based on reasonably nondiscriminatory commercial terms

  4. Open networks: Third parties (like internet service providers) should be able to interconnect at any technically feasible point in a 700 MHz licensee's wireless network.

Google also wanted to have the right to rent the frequencies to other local broadcasters at wholesale. This would have sparked an new industrial revolution in America. It literally would have brought thousands of new broadcasting, services, devices and applications development, IT, and local maintenance. Nope!

Verizon and AT&T fought tooth and nail against all four because they already hold the monopoly on all four. They claimed it was ""violates the U.S. Constitution, violates the Administrative Procedures Act … and is arbitrary, capricious, unsupported by the substantial evidence and otherwise contrary to law." Corporations are people too you know!

In the end only two of the open architecture regulations were enforced by the FCC: Open devices and Open Apps.

AT&T and Verizon keep their monopoly on the physical networks and services, while Google won not even being in the final bidding by the two wireless giants having to allow Google's Android and all other devices and apps operate on their network.
Punch in the face to AT&T and Verizon, but it makes it seem that you and me ,the consumer, seem like we just got something in our best interest. Smoke and Mirrors.

By the way, Google's initial minimum 4.6 billion dollar offer was only good if the four regulations were in place. Google retracted from bidding.

The final bidding FAR exceeded that by bringing in 19.1 billion dollars. For Air. Auction 73 Results

We already know that regardless of which bidders ultimately win the auction, consumers will be the real winners either way. This is because the eventual winner of a key portion of this spectrum will be required to give its customers the right to download any application they want on their mobile device, and the right to use any device they want on the network (assuming the C Block reserve price of $4.6 billion is met in the auction). That's meaningful progress in our ongoing efforts to help transform the relatively closed wireless world to be more like the open realm of the Internet.


Sorry Google that you did not win entirely. It would have brought competitive pricing new technologies, and business opportunities to smaller independent companies that want to better society, not ones that will be bought out by the giants in another Ponzi Scheme. Not to mention robbing opportunities of unempolyed technical people like myself!

An interesting note: The Chevron Corporation. won the bid for the ENTIRE Gulf of Mexico rights.


Knox, Laurel and Whitley counties, along with 56 others in Kentucky, will receive about $59 million in federal recovery act monies to bring high-speed Internet access in outlying areas.

That money will come to Windstream, which provides not only telephone service, but also television cable and satellite service.

The intent is to place lines into areas in the counties which either have low-quality high-speed access or only dial-up service.

The TimesTribune Dec. 6, 2010.

I smell a rat in Windstream.........

Verizon Signs Contract With Windstream

LITTLE ROCK, Ark., Jan. 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Verizon Wireless, the nation's largest and most reliable network, has been selected as the primary wireless provider for Windstream Corp., an S&P 500 company with operations in 29 states, including the District of Columbia, and annual revenues of about $4 billion.


There are many others that are in bed with AT&T and Verizon too. I found this example in about .000000005 seconds.

Pretty clandestine huh? They are pretty clever, they sell air, then print money out of the same air to pay for the air that they just bought and get a new system that could fail at anytime if these companies go bankrupt. WOW!

Part 2 - Smart Grid

While the Smart Grid is being implemented right now, I just got a new smart meter installed recently myself, It is not directly involved with Auction 73. It plays a key role in the conundrum.

What is a smart grid?

Basically, they have developed a two way communication system that works over existing power lines. This enables communication with smart meters and appliances that communicate back to a data center eliminating the need for an actual person to read the meter and in the near future make adjustments to these appliances as power consumption increases in different parts of the grid.

This system will integrate with the home area network connecting eventually every device in your home to an off site data center.

Put something over your webcam!

These regulations are going to be put on us because there is not a plan to deal with the energy "crisis", except with big oil and telecommunication companies to keep the people slaves to them.

It's a sham.

U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu. I thought he was an educated scholar? shrugs shoulders...

Part 3 - PLC - Power Line Communications

There are modems you can plug into the existing power outlets in every structure in the world that can deliver a full duplex 1Gb signal. High speed internet for the masses through EXISTING equipment RIGHT NOW!

Power Line Communication

Power line communication or power line carrier (PLC), also known as Power line Digital Subscriber Line (PDSL), mains communication, power line telecom (PLT), power line networking (PLN), or Broadband over Power Lines (BPL) are systems for carrying data on a conductor also used for electric power transmission.

Electrical power is transmitted over high voltage transmission lines, distributed over medium voltage, and used inside buildings at lower voltages. Powerline communications can be applied at each stage. Most PLC technologies limit themselves to one set of wires (for example, premises wiring), but some can cross between two levels (for example, both the distribution network and premises wiring). Typically the transformer prevents propagating the signal, which requires multiple PLC technologies to be used to form very large networks.

Ultra-High-frequency communication (≥100 MHz) The highest information rate transmissions over power line use RF through microwave frequencies transmitted via a transverse mode surface wave propagation mechanism that requires only a single conductor (U.S. Patent 7,567,154). An implementation of this technology called E-Line has been demonstrated using a single power line conductor. These systems have demonstrated symmetric and full duplex communication well in excess of 1 Gbit/s in each direction. Multiple Wi-Fi channels with simultaneous analog television in the 2.4 and 5.3 GHz unlicensed bands have been demonstrated operating over a single medium voltage line conductor. Because the underlying propagation mode is extremely broadband, it can operate anywhere in the 20 MHz - 20 GHz region. Also since it is not restricted to below 80 MHz, as is the case for high-frequency BPL, these systems can avoid the need to share spectrum with other licensed or unlicensed services and can completely avoid the interference issues associated with use of shared spectrum while offering complete flexibility for modulation and protocols of an RF-microwave system.

1GB full duplex, unlicensed, on existing power lines. Think what we could do with the radio spectrum if we utilized this. Reminiscent of Nikola Tesla wanting to distribute electricity for free to the masses for the good of humans. Remember what happened to him.

So, in conclusion, I hope you understand that we got screwed and got a new purposely half assed communications/surveillance system payed for by us x 2 with our ever increasing monthly contract with these companies and our sweat that was taken by taxes. All the while being told that your Iphone will now work better. Fewer dropped calls, new apps and The U.S. Treasury gets 19.1 billion for AIR! WOW!!

This is not just happening here. This is a worldwide system being implemented, the dummies are not even making them compatible though.........geez

The means are in place to do this right, for the good of the people, piss on big business. I hope they will change their minds. And since they are relying on you and I to pay for this half ass nanny system that they are presenting as 'cutting edge' , WE can change their minds!

Throw your phone in the river! It is quite freeing not to be reached except when you want to be reached. Old School.........

Corrupt politicians and industry giants, we will overcome!

Thats A Wrap!

edit on 6-2-2011 by timewalker because: (no reason given)

edit on 6-2-2011 by timewalker because: lots of typos

posted on Feb, 7 2011 @ 01:12 AM
I hope I don't get disqualified for my use of the term for half a donkey.

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 12:06 PM

THIS JUST IN 2-8-2011

© Flickr: Fillippo Natuzzi

Seems that I am not the only one disturbed by this. I will post a bit from both articles.

Washington Post


"This is a test of the Emergency Alert System. This is only a test..."

You've heard that warning before, but it may soon come

The Federal Communications Commission has approved plans to hold the first test of a "Presidential Alert," or a broadcast warning that might be issued in the event of a serious natural disaster or terrorism threat.

It may seem like a scene out of George Orwell's "1984" or some other apocalyptic Hollywood blockbuster, but government officials have wanted for years to establish a way for the White House to quickly, directly alert Americans of impending danger.

Commissioners voted last week to require television and radio stations, cable systems and satellite TV providers to participate in a test that would have them receive and transmit a live code that includes an alert message issued by the president. No date has been set for the test.

Between the lines???

]"This is a test of the Emergency Alert System. This is only a test..."

directly from the White House.

serious natural disaster or terrorism threat.

alert Americans of impending danger.

No date has been set for the test


Even the Washington Post describes it like something out of Orwell’s 1984. The FCC has approved a presidential alert system. Obama may soon appear on your television or call your cell phone to warn you about the next specious al-Qaeda underwear bombing event.

Once again, the government has imposed an unreasonable and absurd mandate on business and the American people.

As Next Generation EAS systems become operational over the next few years, they will complement other public alert and warning systems now being developed, including FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) and the Commercial Mobile Alert System that will enable consumers to receive alerts through a variety of multi-media platforms on their smart-phones, blackberries and other mobile broadband devices. If implemented, the president will be able to commandeer your smart phone any time he wants and for any reason the government deems necessary.

In November, communications company Alcatel-Lucent announced that it’s creating a Broadcast Message Center that will allow government agencies to send cell phone users specific information in the event of a local, state or national emergency, including those now ubiquitous government warnings about fantastic terror plots that invariably fizzle out or are run by FBI informants and agents provocateurs. It seems not a week or two passes that some gullible Muslim is duped by the agency into a fantastic terror plot (for instance, blowing up Christmas trees).

The Broadcast Message Center is designed to force mobile phone manufacturers to adopt the Federal Communication Commission’s Commercial Mobile Alert System. Under the new system, all phones would receive emergency alerts directly from government bureaucrats.

I am sure I will add more to this non - fiction work in progress as developments arise.

Please Stand By...

End of Broadcast..............Beep
edit on 8-2-2011 by timewalker because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 12:13 PM
reply to post by timewalker

Great work timewalker! S&F!

Are you open for comments yet?
Let me know, as I have a few, especially concerning the smart meter.

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 12:14 PM
reply to post by burntheships


posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 12:22 PM
reply to post by timewalker

Great work again!

This smart meter they have installed now everywhere!

How is the information they "read" transmitted back to the Utility company?

What would stop them from turning off the power at their will with the click of a mouse?

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 12:37 PM
reply to post by burntheships

They have integrated circuitry in the power companies to transmit two way data over the power lines to communicate directly to the smart meters. Send readings and such.

from the wiki entry: Smart Grid

The idea of two way communications from suppliers to consumers to control appliances is not new, and systems have been implemented using analog technology for many years. The growth of an extensive digital communication network for the internet has made it practical to consider a more sophisticated type of smart grid. The increased data transmission capacity has made it conceptually possible to apply sensing, measurement and control devices with two-way communications to electricity production, transmission, distribution and consumption parts of the power grid at a more granular level than previously. These devices could communicate information about grid condition to system users, operators and automated devices, making it possible for the average consumer to dynamically respond to changes in grid condition, instead of only utilities and very large customers.

The newer appliances (ie..everything, kitchen, AC, lamps, everything that plugs into the wall) rolled out will have circuitry built in to communicate over the power outlets in your house to the smart meter and make needed adjustments to regulate power.

They can just shut off your power quicker now.

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 12:39 PM
reply to post by timewalker

Taking deep breath... Okay, now this topic is one in which I am a bonafide, qualified expert. I've worked extensively with the FCC and still know top people there by first name. I've personally met two the former Chairmen. I knew about Auction 73 well over a year before it occured, I wrote op ed pieces on it and I largely predicted the outcome (which few agreed with me until I proved correct). I also know more than a fair bit about PLC (power line carrier), also known more correctly as BPL (broadband over powerline). Today, PLC is the more common term for in-house distribution of data over your standard 120vAC while BPL more precisely refers to the using the "grid" to distribute broadband signals -- the one you meant to imply in your 1 gbps claim.

Let's do BPL first since that's the easy part. The exaggerated claims of broadband speed holy grail using the grid is nothing more than marketing goop put out by the BPL consortiums and power companies (more on that in a bit). What is theoretical in the lab may be that speed (in fact I know it can be done in a lab), but in the real world? Forget it. The "grid" is actually a mish mash of systems, with different technologies, grades of cables, and especially the power running across those high voltage lines is not consistent. It modulates a bit. That's why you have devices all along the grid that condition the power. That inconsistency creates distortions and performance unpredictability when you try to ride information bits along them. And then you have to deal with the transition from high voltage to "low" (at least what power companies consider low) voltage at the transformers, which step down the power just before it gets sent to the homes and businesses. That's why most BPL models (and I know because I helped create some of them) use wireless to bypass certain parts of the grid. Some models use PtP (point-to-point backbone wireless systems to bypass the highpower, some use lower power PmP (point-to-multipoint) wireless systems from the transformer location down. Some use wireless in the middle and PLC from the transformers down to the end points. In any event, none of the systems use the grid for the entire transmission of broadband except in concepts.

Some years back I was a speaker at a conference on broadband. On the panel with me included a VP, Technology from the Southern Company. Afterwards in a brief private chat, he told me something I can still almost quote verbatim, it made that much of an impression: "The Southern Company has the largest installed base of wiring in the country and you can be damned sure we are gonna find another way to monetize it." In other words, the Southern Co. (Atlanta-based) touches most every home and business in the region using thousands upon thousands of already installed power cables. That infrastructure is already paid for. Imagine the value if the could use it to deliver reliable broadband? Imagine how powerful that make the utility companies (and you thought they were powerful already?). In addition, he mentioned that if they could just use it to read meters it would drammatically reduce OPEX (read: reduce payrolls due to the expense and time-burdening physical meter reading). He is right on both counts, except BPL in scale is a long way off, at best. Don't buy the hype.

...take another breath...Well, maybe I'll come back to the wireless part later as it can be a book if I so wanted. I can briefly summarize though that some of your concerns are correct, but only in the sense that that is how the world works in America -- big businesses wield massive power and generally get what they want. But you might be surprised to know that the rules of the auction were intentional written in hopes of a much better outcome. By this I mean the rule writers (the line career bureaucrats at the FCC) were well-intended. I told a few of them about what I suspected would be the unintended consequences and I was right. But that does not negate the fact that those career FCC people were trying to do something they hoped would serve the public; they were just wrong and the experience left some of the fairly frustrated to say the least. I'll add more later. I left the wireless industry some months back after about 15 years. I was burnt out, so going back into it for something like this sortof drains me....

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 01:16 PM
reply to post by pajoly

Thank you very much. I look forward to reading your post.

Understand my observation of this is a layman's point of view. Sort of, I have pretty vast experience in hardware, WAP's and structured cabling with 15 years in the P.O.S. and Surveillance/Access Control industries.

Your expertise is invited.

I am sure there were some good people on the FCC board, or the two open requirements would never have made it in the final bid.

Unfortunately, I know this is how business is done. I just think some things grow bigger than any one monopoly should be able to suppress. I don't know the answer, but electricity (Tesla) and the new "Alexandria Library" Should not be one of them.

Don't you think that with R&D the BPL systems could be made to work properly? We need to upgrade the grid anyway. Do both. Free up the RF Spectrum.

I think the combined upgrade would be cheaper than an entire, new and upgraded broadband system. Well maybe not cheaper but you kill two birds.

Monopolies will never let this happen though.

I also think it makes sense (in their mind) for them to keep the two separated. Not good to shutdown electricity and communications.

edit on 8-2-2011 by timewalker because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 01:54 PM
reply to post by pajoly

I knew about Auction 73 well over a year before it occured, I wrote op ed pieces on it and I largely predicted the outcome (which few agreed with me until I proved correct).

Was this your conclusion?

I am interested in the op-eds you wrote. I understand if you don't want to link.

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 02:08 PM
reply to post by timewalker

You did a lot of great research and presented your findings in a compelling way Timewalker, so congrats for sure on that. And in the end, you are correct that the result of auction screwed things up and gave Verizon even more power. Many in my industry (the broadband side of wireless) hated the outcome. Had Googled actually played, it would already have produced drammatic changes. The concept of "Open Access" was just too much of a holy grail for consumers though and its entire concept was a dire threat to the traditional business models of the major wireless carriers, who make money by limiting access to their networks to devices they accept and by charging for applications they control, one way or another.

I will tell you one of the MAJOR unintended consequences and it will help to refer to the following FCC link that is a quick facts page for the auction, which also links to other key data points, maps, etc. (the FCC has the best federal Web site in my view and I have made a living before just mining the data in it). FCC one pager fast facts on auction 73

This one will help too as I discuss the letters A, B, C blocks, etc.:

(Businessweek also has a good brief summary on the results of the auction:

Now check out this map showing the winners from each block, notice how Verizon cleaned

Usually in such auctions, the major carriers prefer to bid only the larger geography blocks of spectrum, which because they are so big are usually only able to be afforded (huge bid value) by the biggest companies, so the small guys don't bid on them. The end result is that the price per "MHz/pop" (# of megahertz relative to the population that license covers) is relatively low. The smaller companies normally would have bid only on the the "B" blocks form the 700 MHz auction, there were 734 of them and each covered a small area, like over one town or so. Small rural wireless companies, even individuals buy that stuff up usually. The big guys usually back off because it requires TONS of individual bidding battles and tricky tactics if you want to buy up contiguous blocks.

But in this case, the biggest regional hunks had the FCC open access rules atttached so whoever won those would be forced to use those rules. That devalued those hunks, though still guaranteed the Treasury the $4.6B that Google had promised to meet the minimum reserve. By way of consequence, those 370 or so small blocks did NOT have the open access rules attached to them so the big guys went hard after them, bidding up the pricing and beating the bids that the smaller and local guys were bidding. Summary end result, the little guys got screwed and that was very contrary to what the FCC had intended. What is also not known by most (or even few) is that the small guys were NOT interested in using the spectrum for mobile like the big guys. The small guys wanted to use that spectrum for long range rural fixed wireless broadband, which would have enabled more high speed broadband competition in the most broadband challeneged markets. That sort of service is one price all you can eat models, versus the mobile metered rate (expensive) sort of pricing. Instead, no dice rural people, the big carriers no have your future broadband largely by the short hairs.

The D block did not end up being auctioned. It had rules that few were prepared to abide,allowing it to be jointly used as a national unified public safety channel for emergencies. Not don't think conspiracy, think common sense: during 9/11 (no matter if it was false flag or terrorism) the rescue efforts were seriously f'ed up because there was no unified comms between groups. That caused deaths, slowed responses, made double work, etc. That led to major studies about what would have happened had the disaster been even larger, more regional or God forbid national. Comms between fire and police are different. Comms between other groups and states are totally non-standard. This reality also contributed to problems during Katrina. This the plan was hatched to use the nationwide 700 MHz D block to serve as a nationally standardized spectrum for unified comms. The tech details take much longer, but that was the plan. The big carriers did not want that burden and no one else stepped up to pay the minimum reserve the FCC decided that spectrum was worth, so it was not auctioned off. It still is not and the rules for the spectrum have changed and are still changing (and is now very political like everything else has become).

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 04:05 PM
reply to post by pajoly
Though I started this, it is still confusing. Your a great resource.

So let me get this straight. It seems worse than I thought, Verizon wise.

Blocks are giving me a headache.

The "larger" blocks (A&B) only had the two restrictions, while the block (C) (rural) have none? Though the "larger" block is only that because they are more densely populated, so they have more coverage infrastructure?

That means unlimited expansion in these rural areas.

And yes Verizon, did clean house, all pink on the map.

This is where I get upset about the whole thing. Just a pipe dream.

It still seems that if our politicians really wanted to do something about our economy. They would do things that would stimulate REAL growth and prosperity.

Like making sure things like this don't happen.

I don't know what the answer to the current business model would be. Understandably, they built and payed for the current infrastructure, and it would be detrimental. This maybe falls into the too big to fail category.

I think if they would have had to lease the frequencies, this would have sparked new development and infrastructure. Creating hundreds of thousands of new local jobs (Verizon 225,000 worldwide). The revenues created would have far exceeded these bids. Real stimulation.

Verizon stay's as big as they are, while letting some bottom feeders try to catch up.

Logically, I do understand the need for public safety emergency communications, no conspiracy there (this is an entry to a creative writing contest on a conspiracy site
) The whole thing is getting 1984ish. With all the kill switches. Al long as I don't get a kill switch installed, I don't care.

The conspiracy is , this is more dramatized BS from an administration not giving you the whole scoop, an administration that say's they want to recover economically, but doesn't really do anything. Blah Blah Blah.

This is not an Obama bash. Presidents are temporary autograph signers.

Meanwhile, they are making this to be in everyone's best interest, but in reality if you live in the metro's only? Sorry country folk.

One other question.

If the D block has not been licensed yet, who is about to do the "Emergency Broadcast System" test?

edit on 8-2-2011 by timewalker because: (no reason given)

edit on 8-2-2011 by timewalker because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 08:58 PM
Thank you for the time and work that you have put into this. It is very interesting to see how things are being played out and headed towards a more collectivist and yet totalitarian way of being. I fear that nothing can be done, for those in power have an agenda and we common people are nothing but slaves.

You and Pajoly (sp) have put things together quite nicely and I will have to peruse through it a bit more. I have been drinking a bit so my mind is not as sharp as it should be when reading these types of threads.

S&F for you. Thanks again for the work!

posted on Feb, 8 2011 @ 11:43 PM
reply to post by pajoly

The "larger" blocks (A&B) only had the two restrictions, while the block (C) (rural) have none?

After re-reading again you clearly state the rural guys usually go after the B blocks, I said C because of the map of Verizon cleaning house across the board.


This is why I never really got into the block part, it is very confusing.

Especially with the all of them in tying into 12 REAG - Regional Economic Area Groupings.pdf

What is also not known by most (or even few) is that the small guys were NOT interested in using the spectrum for mobile like the big guys. The small guys wanted to use that spectrum for long range rural fixed wireless broadband, which would have enabled more high speed broadband competition in the most broadband challeneged markets. That sort of service is one price all you can eat models, versus the mobile metered rate (expensive) sort of pricing. Instead, no dice rural people, the big carriers no have your future broadband largely by the short hairs.

The real job killer, right? Economy booster wrong?

edit on 8-2-2011 by timewalker because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 9 2011 @ 09:38 AM
reply to post by timewalker

Absolutely fantastic work timewalker! This is actually more scarier then my fictional story because it's true! Very well researched and written my friend. I never knew any of this stuff until now. Thanks for the entry timewalker it is a great one.

posted on Feb, 9 2011 @ 10:40 AM

Blocks are giving me a headache.

The "larger" blocks (A&B) only had the two restrictions, while the block (C) (rural) have none? Though the "larger" block is only that because they are more densely populated, so they have more coverage infrastructure?

It is confusing at first. ALL blocks cover the entire 50 states. HOWEVER, each letter refers to a distinct set of blocks arranged geographically in a different way AND corresponding to a different piece of the radio spectrum. (Also, what is not made clear in the "band plan" pdf is that some of this spectrum was already auctioned off in an earlier auction some years back.)

A block: There are 176 licenses, each covering a fairly large region. Each provides 2 unpaired (two groupoing that are NOT adjacent on the spectrum chart) 6 MHz wide channels for a total allocation of 12 MHz (2 x 6MHz). These typically are bought a combination of regional players and larger players. Being bigger, they cost more and companies bid hirer, especially for those that cover major metro areas.

B block: There are 734 of these. These are the very small blocks geographically (much smaller than the A blocks), yet they also grant 2 x 6MHz unpaired channels like the A block. The goal of such a small is to allow small business a crack at valuable spectrum. You small rural telco are typical buyers. I have a friend that even bought some in an ultra rural market none of the bigger guys bid for. One block as I recall (this is from memory), went for as little as $16k. But even a B block near a major metro will fetch millions. In any event, the FCC expected these would be bought by little guys (who would then use it for fixed broadband wireless), but because of the onerous rules places on one of the larger blocks (the open access rules in the C block), the big guys alo decided to go after B blocks (they do not usually do that, not at least to the extent they did in this auction).

C Block: Now THIS was ORIGINALLY the big daddy allocation of them all because it represents a total of 22 MHz (2 11 MHz unpaired). WoW! In the wireless world, you can do an awful lot with that amount of spectrum. Remember, more spectrum = more capacity you could create in any one location. More capacity = EITHER the abiliuty to sell BIG pipes a small number of people or LOTS of modest sized pipes to many people per cell. Imagine, this is the stuff these guys need to offer 4G services because such services require lots of system capacity and capacity can only be increased through techincal innovation so much; in the end you still need adequate spectrum. So not only is this a big chunk, but it can all be had by bidding on just 12 licenses! Each license covers a huge swath of the U.S. Such huge pieces cannot ever be afforded by the little guys, so guess what, only the biggest companies stand a chance. Logistically during the auction and more importantly, operationally after the award, fewer bigger blocks are easier to manage since every license, no matter how small or large has regulatory filing, legal requirements, etc. So less is easier. (And that's another reason why the big guys usually avoid the small tiny blocks during the auctions, as it is a nightmare and takes a legal army to track the bids, etc.). Verizon has the whole enchilada...EXCEPT the Gulf of Mexico, which was won at the auction by Chevron (use it to connect oil platforms and such...that's another thread). This is the block, by the way, that has the open access rules, which devalued the spectrum so Verizon got it for a relative song. Now since it has these open access rules attached, it is still not used and may not be for some time. Verizon will continue to file requests for rule changes and such or simply hold the spectrum as a capital asset.

D block: 2 x 10 MHz unpaired channel. But just 1 license covering the ENTIRE U.S.!! Holy moly! Well, not exactly. You see, that was the block refered to as the "Public Safety" block. The hope was that some groovy start up might by it all a offer the nationwide standardized comms to police, fire, etc. or that the big boys would, allowing the capacity to be used by PS workers in times of emergencies. but carriers do not like such burdens, such unpredictability, because if an emergency happened, all the civilian users would likely be bumped off -- bad for customer service rep, no matter the public value. So few really bid on this, the "reserve" (minimum price) was not met, so the spectrum is still in the federal coffer waiting a new plan.

E block: The are configured geographically EXACTLY like the A blocks (they overlay). The difference here is that the E block has only 6 MHz of spectrum. On its own, you cannot do much in the way of two-way cellular or broadband with just 6 MHz. BUT, you can always try to pick up more spectrum in the after market (which is big business the FC calls the "Secondary Spectrum market).

So that's the explanation of the blocks in detail and should be understandable. I should also not two things:

1. The general range of spectrum (called the "700 MHz band") has two parts, the Upper and Lower (though they are both somewhat mixed). There was an earlier auction that included a smaller amount of spectrum in this range. Things went normal there, with about a great many rural telcos buying up little chunk. Problem was, the allocation was so small that no equipment vendor really developed tech for that band, except for trying to use old tech to extend the life of ancient products. There it by and large lays fallow, slower being aquired by biggger companies in the after market.

2. The band here became available as part of the "Digital Transition." This spectrum was GIVEN freely to the major networks many decades ago to use to broadcast analog TV. The FCC forced a transition to modern digital broadcasting (think HD TV) that provides better quality AND uses less spectrum. So the forced them to "vacate" that spectrum and the result is the spectrum made available in the auction. That's the nutshell at least.

Any more questions?

posted on Feb, 9 2011 @ 11:07 AM
reply to post by pajoly

You have done a wonderful job explaining. Thank you for that.

I do have a few unanswered questions.


Don't you think that with R&D the BPL systems could be made to work properly? We need to upgrade the grid anyway. Do both. Free up the RF Spectrum.

I think the combined upgrade would be cheaper than an entire, new and upgraded broadband system. Well maybe not cheaper but you kill two birds.


If the D block has not been licensed yet, who is about to do the "Emergency Broadcast System" test?


What is also not known by most (or even few) is that the small guys were NOT interested in using the spectrum for mobile like the big guys. The small guys wanted to use that spectrum for long range rural fixed wireless broadband, which would have enabled more high speed broadband competition in the most broadband challeneged markets. That sort of service is one price all you can eat models, versus the mobile metered rate (expensive) sort of pricing. Instead, no dice rural people, the big carriers no have your future broadband largely by the short hairs.

I would really like your opinion on how this would have opened up the floodgates. To me, this is where the political madness comes in. Without even really understanding the blocks, when I first started researching, I knew the little guy got the short end.

I pictured local infrastructure and maintenance. Not a regional office 600 miles away sending a tech.

What kind of new growth (jobs) would have come of this?

Lastly, how could they (The FCC) not see this coming? If I could figure it out, why not them?

Thank you.

posted on Feb, 9 2011 @ 11:42 AM

Don't you think that with R&D the BPL systems could be made to work properly? We need to upgrade the grid anyway. Do both. Free up the RF Spectrum.

I think the combined upgrade would be cheaper than an entire, new and upgraded broadband system. Well maybe not cheaper but you kill two birds.

Pajoly: A major piece of "Recovery and Reinvestment Act" (aka "stimulus) went towards upgrade of this critical piece of national infrastructure and that investment is what is fueling the growth in the "smart grid" sector (everyone wants a piece). Frankly, I think BPL is dead as broadband transmission medium EXCEPT to the extent of enabling control and management of systems -- meter reading, the ability of consumers to go online (via the utility company web site, like you do online banking) to manage their smart homes (coming eventually) and appliances (here now somewhat, if you look), my guess for an added fee. The biggest benefit simply is the OPEX reduction the utility compnies may realize. I have heard claims of as high as 30% OPEX improvement using "smart" metering alone. Maybe though one day (I expect it eventually since we seem to be all about gwoing new monopolies like COMCAST/NBC that merge infrastructure with content) we'll see major mergers of power companies with entities like Comcast or Time Warner. While such would create efficiencies (for business mostly) it is ultimately bad for consumers in my opinion. One entity should not have so much control.


If the D block has not been licensed yet, who is about to do the "Emergency Broadcast System" test?

Pajoly: The test leverages all the variety of systems in place, such as standard broadcasters on radio and TV. My guess is this is just a backend integration accomplishment that unifies those diseparate mediums to enable an all pervasive alert instead of the hogdepodge we have today. Expect this to eventually tie into you text messaging as an automated message. I am firmly on the side that this sort of thing is good. I don't buy into any of the nefarious theories; I just think it is the most efficient way of contacting the most people.

The D block still has not be released. You can see it is still controversial from the Aug 2010 article.
My guess is that it will go to auction at some point this year. I have not been following what the new rules might be, but I will look into it if you'd like.

Pajoly: More later.

posted on Feb, 14 2011 @ 12:13 AM

edit on 14-2-2011 by timewalker because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 14 2011 @ 02:09 AM
This started as a short story in a writing contest. I ended up writing a book.

Even an industry insider weighed in to tell us his view.

I just wanted to add pertinent additions.

This is real, tangible change that you can touch. All of us will participate in, here in the U.S., and likely around the globe, like it or not. Things are gonna change.

I have mixed feelings about this reboot. Pro's and con's. We're all a little afraid of change, aren't we?

This broadband plan is just that, broad.

The "plan" is going to effect the way things are done in just about every industry, how we live, what we drive, our personal power consumption, what you watch, when you watch it, all the way down to your cell phone.

I even saw a video that states by law that 700MHz wireless microphones are gonna be out. Even the way rock star's do business is changing.

Ironic, they name this life changer after the gadget that is the least of my concerns about the entire plan.

Sad thing is, it is going under the noses of the people, much like this thread. I purposely named it in a stealth manner to see reactions.

The experiment was a success!

I should have headlined it something absurd like "TPTB is gonna take over your life and turn off your grandmothers life support at night", to get the attention this deserves.

To those who have taken the time to read this, thank you. I hope you got something valuable out of this and use it as a reference.
FCC Public Safety & Homeland security Bureau
US Department of Energy

And this one is set up so you can get involved.

Download the entire National Broadband Plan.pdf

Now the Facts:

There are lots, I'm going to list the ones that apply to this thread.

From the Executive Summary which is pubic:

The Plan

Government can influence the broadband ecosystem in four ways:

  1. Design policies to ensure robust competition and, as a result maximize consumer welfare, innovation and investment.

  2. Ensure efficient allocation and management of assets government controls or influences, such as spectrum, poles, and rights-of-way, to encourage network upgrades and competitive entry.

  3. Reform current universal service mechanisms to support deployment of broadband and voice in high-cost areas; and ensure that low-income Americans can afford broadband; and in addition, support efforts to boost adoption and utilization.

  4. Reform laws, policies, standards and incentives to maximize the benefits of broadband in sectors government influences significantly, such as public education, health care and government operations.

1. Establishing competition policies.

H - Clarify the Congressional mandate allowing state and local entities to provide broadband in their communities and do so in ways that use public resources more effectively.

I - Clarify the relationship between users and their online profiles to enable continued innovation and competition in applications and ensure consumer privacy, including the obligations of firms collecting personal information to allow consumers to know what information is being collected, consent to such collection, correct it if necessary, and control disclosure of such personal information to third parties.

2. Infrastructure such as poles, conduits, rooftops and rights-of-way play an important role in the economics of broadband networks.

  1. Establish low and more uniform rental rates for access to poles, and simplify and expedite the process for service providers to attach facilities to poles.

  2. Improve rights-of-way management for cost and time savings, promote use of federal facilities for broadband, expedite resolution of disputes and identify and establish “best practices” guidelines for rights-of-way policies and fee practices that are consistent with broadband deployment.

  3. Facilitate efficient new infrastructure construction, including through “dig-once” policies that would make federal financing of highway, road and bridge projects contingent on states and localities allowing joint deployment of broadband infrastructure.

  4. Provide ultra-high-speed broadband connectivity to select U.S. Department of Defense installations to enable the development of next-generation broadband applications for military personnel and their families living on base.

3. Creating incentives for universal availability and adoption of broadband. Three elements must be in place to ensure all Americans have the opportunity to reap the benefits of broadband. All Americans should have access to broadband service with sufficient capabilities, all should be able to afford broadband and all should have the opportunity to develop digital literacy skills to take advantage of broadband. Recommendations to promote universal broadband deployment and adoption include the following:

  1. Ensure universal access to broadband network services.

  2. Create the Connect America Fund (CAF) to support the provision of affordable broadband and voice with at least 4 Mbps actual download speeds and shift up to $15.5 billion over the next decade from the existing Universal Service Fund (USF) program to support broadband.

  3. Create a Mobility Fund to provide targeted funding to ensure no states are lagging significantly behind the national average for 3G wireless coverage. Such 3G coverage is widely expected to be the basis for the future footprint of 4G mobile broadband networks.

  4. Design the new Connect America Fund and Mobility Fund in a tax-efficient manner to minimize the size of the broadband availability gap and thereby reduce contributions borne by consumers.

  5. Create mechanisms to ensure affordability to low-income Americans

  6. Expand the Lifeline and Link-Up programs by allowing subsidies provided to low-income Americans to be used for broadband.

  7. Ensure every American has the opportunity to become digitally literate.

  8. Launch a National Digital Literacy Corps to organize and train youth and adults to teach digital literacy skills and enable private sector programs addressed at breaking adoption barriers.

4. Updating policies, setting standards and aligning incentives to maximize use for national priorities.

Health Care - Read it

Education - Read it

Energy and the environment. Broadband can play a major role in the transition to a clean energy economy. America can use these innovations to reduce carbon pollution, improve our energy efficiency and lessen our dependence on foreign oil. To achieve these objectives, the plan has recommendations that will:

  1. Modernize the electric grid with broadband, making it more reliable and efficient.

  2. Unleash energy innovation in homes and buildings by making energy data readily accessible to consumers.

  3. Improve the energy efficiency and environmental impact of the ICT sector.

Economic opportunity. Broadband can expand access to jobs and training, support entrepreneurship and small business growth and strengthen community development efforts. The plan includes recommendations to:

  1. Support broadband choice and small businesses’ use of broadband services and applications to drive job creation, growth and productivity gains.

  2. Expand opportunities for job training and placement through an online platform.

  3. Integrate broadband assessment and planning into economic development efforts.

Government performance and civic engagement. Within government, broadband can drive greater efficiency and effectiveness in service delivery and internal operations.

  1. Allow state and local governments to purchase broadband from federal contracts such as Networx.

  2. Improve government performance and operations through cloud computing, cybersecurity, secure authentication and online service delivery.

  3. Increase civic engagement by making government more open and transparent, creating a robust public media ecosystem and modernizing the democratic process.

Public safety and homeland security. Broadband can bolster efforts to improve public safety and homeland security by allowing first responders to send and receive video and data, by ensuring all Americans can access emergency services and improving the way Americans are notified about emergencies. To achieve these objectives, the plan makes recommendations to:

  1. Support deployment of a nationwide, interoperable public safety mobile broadband network, with funding of up to $6.5 billion in capital expenditures over 10 years, which could be reduced through cost efficiency measures and other programs. Additional funding will be required for operating expenses.

  2. Promote innovation in the development and deployment of next-generation 911 and emergency alert systems.

  3. Promote cybersecurity and critical infrastructure survivability to increase user confidence, trust and adoption of broadband communications.

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