Public Knowledge Defends FCC Auction Practices
Public Knowledge Defends FCC Auction Practices
Public Knowledge Defends FCC Auction Practices

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    House Energy and
    Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) and AT&T in recent
    days have issued statements criticizing the Federal Communications
    Commission’s conduct of spectrum auctions.

    Chairman Upton’s
    statement is here.

    AT&T’s is here.

    The following
    statement is attributed to Harold Feld, legal director of Public

    “It is truly
    unfortunate that the spectrum auction authority of the Federal
    Communications Commission (FCC) is under attack from powerful members
    of Congress and from a major telecommunications company.

    “As 100
    companies, groups and associations have recognized in a Dec. 16
    letter to Congressional leadership, 
    the Commission has a history of conducting successful auctions,
    which have raised more than $50 billion and spurred the growth of the
    wireless industry. As importantly, the Commission has also tried to
    make certain that wireless markets remain competitive while also
    setting aside spectrum for unlicensed use.

    “The legislation
    before Congress now would strip the Commission of much of its
    discretion, and as a result, much of its ability to respond to market
    conditions. In an endeavor as complex as a spectrum auction, this is
    a recipe for disaster.

    “We agree with
    the bipartisan group of Senators, John Kerry (D-MA), Mark Warner
    (D-VA), Olympia Snowe (R-ME) and Jerry Moran (R-KS), who supported
    the ability of the FCC to conduct auctions in which markets for
    spectrum remain competitive for companies of all sizes, and for
    setting aside unlicensed spectrum as a ‘fertile ground for
    innovation.'” (The senators’ letter is here.)

    is a
    Washington D.C.- based public interest group working to defend
    consumer rights in the emerging digital culture. More information is
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