Free Up Unlicensed Spectrum
Petition to President Obama, Congress, and the FCC Commissioners which says:
“FCC chairman Tom Wheeler has said that having sufficient unlicensed spectrum (e.g. Wifi) will be key to American innovation and global competitiveness. President Obama, Congress, and the FCC please free up the unlicensed spectrum and get Americans working again.”
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Some relevant links:
In spectrum that is designated as “unlicensed” or “licensed-exempt,” users can operate without an FCC license but must use certified radio equipment and must comply with the technical requirements, including power limits, of the FCC’s Part 15 Rules. Users of the license-exempt bands do not have exclusive use of the spectrum and are subject to interference.
Open spectrum (also known as free spectrum) is a movement to get the Federal Communications Commission to provide more unlicensed, radio frequency spectrum that is available for use by all. Proponents of the “commons model” of open spectrum advocate a future where all the spectrum is shared, and in which people use Internet protocols to communicate with each other, and smart devices, which would find the most effective energy level, frequency, and mechanism. Previous government-imposed limits on who can have stations and who cannot would be removed, and everyone would be givenequal opportunity to use the airwaves for their own radio station, television station, or even broadcast their own website. A notable advocate for Open Spectrum is Lawrence Lessig.
The companies that use licensed spectrum—like your cell phone carrier—have pull in Washington, both directly and through trade groups like the CTIA. They need to, because they can’t operate without the licenses that come from the FCC. The WISPs, thus far, have no pull, because all they’ve needed from Washington is unlicensed spectrum, a public good that Washington already provides.