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Patrick Leary wrote:

I favor substantial use rules and also agree in rejecting squatters rights.
A method of issuing licenses I like is the following:

1. licenses are broken up into regional and local.
Why not license by base station? Then a provider cannot ignore under-served areas. They must serve the area completely or someone else makes a business case and serves the area. Under the plan I proposed the area runs unlicensed if substantial use is not able to be reached. No need for license costs or property protection if you cannot make a business case to build out to begin with or if a service area has too few people to require license protection. Why build layers of administrative overhead for the whole country when some areas run fine on unlicensed. Let the market dictate where the licenses are needed and where they are not. Why should someone be pronounced "ruler of the frequency" in a place they do not serve? Set licensing by base station and see how many people make the jump from unlicensed to licensed delivery of broadband in this country. You will see the whole country served effectively with wireless broadband very quickly under my plan. Your plan is still requiring more time and money before anything gets built. I am surprised Alvarion is not not jumping on my plan. My plan could sell much more gear than your plan for sure. I am sure of it.

2. the government sets the price in advance
We already own these frequencies. Why pay a big chunk to the government for something we already own? This is simply a way to cause services to cost more and limit speed of growth. It cracks me up that we have big companies crying that they cannot afford to build broadband into rural areas without USF but they think it is fine to pay billions for frequencies to do the job. I smell a big rat in that game.

It is easy to limit the number of providers who can deliver broadband wirelessly if it costs billions to own all the frequencies in advance and the precious few megasuck.nets in turn get billions in subsidies through USF to build out their network after the fact. Talk about hand-outs. Who is getting the hand-outs from your plan?

Your proposal basically makes the process inaccessible to many entrepreneurs and adds overhead cost and slows deployment. I would agree that a monthly or yearly fee should be paid to own and maintain a license. Of course under my plan you could just run unlicensed if you do not feel the need to pay for a license with the rights of property protections which can be afforded by government involvement in the process. Basically if you want the government to help protect your property interest through a license then you should expect to pay the government to help protect you. If you do not need protection then you can still use the band if nobody else has built it up and licensed it in your location

3. competing parties submit proposals
How many million proposals would be required to have enough granularity for this to work for anyone but to get a license? Nobody but a conglomerate would be able to compete. This is just another way to do the same crap that has led us to a world of spectrum haves and have nots. Patrick, please try to believe for once that anyone who runs a broadband company does not need to have $25 million in the bank or they should not be in the game. Entrepreneurs need a chance in this game. They do not need to have ALL the game by any means but they should have a shot at the game. Under your proposal there is no chance for a startup to get a license without millions of dollars backing him. This does not foster innovation and stimulate new opportunities for anyone.

4. the proposals are evaluated on their benefit to the public
And who does this? Who gets to say my proposal is better than yours? Why not let those who must drink the punch have a say in who is serving it? My proposal does this by allowing a group being served to request the loss of a license for a holder who is charging too much or delivering bad service. They get a say. License holders would not get a license at all if the people in the area served decided not to buy from them. Your plan is more of the same "government as usual" program where people have no real say in their future and local interests do not get a chance to build communications for their area. My plan allows local interests to have a level field without taking any opportunity away from anyone including the big guys. Your plan excludes smaller companies who are not well funded from the start. Do not forget that Apple started in a garage.

5. parties are also evaluated on their ability to implement
My plan does this already. In my plan you have to build the network first, then you get your license if people buy it and like it. If you cannot get market share under unlicensed then applying for a license is not going to do you any good. How is your plan better than mine? You prefer a big ivory tower to decide whether a provider is better before they deliver? My plan allows people to setup shop and try. If they cannot get a customer base then they fail. If they do get customers and they do a good job they get a license. If someone else does a better job and applies for the license then they get it. How is your plan better than mine?

6. a proposal is picked, a license awarded, a timeframe set
More of the same. Government telling us what to do instead of empowering businesses and people.

7. parties failing in the timeframe requirement lose their license
Under my plan you have to build it and sell it first. How else is your plan better than mine?

Can you not see the flaws in your plan? Your plan requires much government oversight and scads of administration. My plan practically runs itself. People build networks and send in their paperwork for their license. They either pass the smell test or they do not. My plan is based on action and results. If you deliver you get a license. Your plan is more of the same government hash that has never led to stimulation of new industry or economic development. The big boys want to own it all now and you seem to agree. Obviously you want the billions to flow to you. Excuse me for wanting my dollars to stay local. That is part of the basis of my plan.

That is a good model in some cases. I also think that auctions have their
place, but have to be carefully managed and evidence of collusion needs to
be punished massively.

There is only one way to stop the megasuck.nets of the world from corrupting the system. Give everyone a level playing field and make licenses contingent upon action in advance of being issued. If you build it and people like it you get a license. If they don't like it or you do not build it then you don't get squat.

I also think unlicensed has its place, and I am all
for a registration requirement (not a license, but a registration of active
base stations for ALL commercial UL operators), which is something I
conceived of and proposed to the Spectrum Policy Task Force back in 2002.
Registration is a good way to document who is providing what, where, but it really does not protect anything nor does it stimulate growth. The carrot has to be the ability to build a network out with the promise that if you do it right you can get a license. How could this be bad? How could it be corrupted or used to do anything but stimulate growth and develop new and prosperous opportunity for broadband delivery and economic development?

With all do respect John, I do not buy the "power to the people" argument.
People should have a right to tell providers to stick it if they cannot provide them with good service. The almighty buck should not be the only way you get a license in this country.

And I don't buy that all WISPs are pure and good and have the public
interest at heart. Most WISPs deploy to fill their capacity, they do not
deploy to address equity issues or to make sure that anyone in the cell that
wants access gets it.

That is bunk. Anyone that can get signal can get service from a WISP. This is completely unfounded. Beat us up for maybe not being great businessmen but forget the argument that we do not try our hardest to serve anyone who wants service. That dog won't hunt. It is not our fault that we do not get access to higher power or more sub-1 GHz spectrum. I have had many people construct a small tower for their use off of my towers.

Most WISPs are just as much capitalists pigs as the
big guys, only on a smaller scale.
I do not buy that at all. Most WISPs are small town guys who pump 100% of what they earn from their customers right back into their local economy. You don't have any basis for your statement and I find it insulting and derogatory to our industry.

And that is fine, but let's not pretend
there is some sort of special nobility just by virtue of being a WISP.

Nobility? Where did that come from? I am lost on that one completely. There is nothing noble about it. It is business. I do what I can to provide a decent service to my customers. I do not think I am Sir Scriv by any stretch. :-)

seen my share of folks that I consider noble, but it does not make their
business noble. And I've seen more than my share of opportunist scumbags
praying on customers, abusing rules, etc.
I do not know what any of the above has to do with a debate on proper spectrum policy. This country does not have proper spectrum policy, period. That is the debate. What is proper? Forget the WISP slamming and debate the subject at hand please.

Nothing prevents anyone from creating a business plan that can attract
capital and investment and the government is under no obligation to offer
commercial rights to those that cannot. Many WISPs started very humbly and
succeeded brick by brick and now have multi-million dollar businesses.
We should still look at our spectrum policy and find a way to make the deployment of broadband a better opportunity for anyone in this country. Right now it is not a good opportunity for anyone except a well-funded I am not looking for hand-outs or special treatment. A level playing field would be nice. Licenses for those who provide services would be nice. It is not an arcane proposition. People who have piles of cash are not the only ones capable of building a solid broadband platform and should not be the only people who get access to licenses. It is time to stop trashing the average WISP just because they do not have billions in the bank. It is time we all start looking at how we can use broadband as a tool for economic development in our local areas also. Part of that plan is to keep your broadband assets local as much as you can. Licenses for operators within a local area would help do this. National players suck the profits out of your area. Local operators can help keep the profits in the local economy. That IS a noble cause.

If a BWA-dedicated UL is finally created, you should realize that anyone can
use it, even those companies you revile. There are no "rights" for use by
WISPs only.
You read things into my statements that simply do not exist and you represent my views as if I am narrow-minded here. I never once said my proposal was a "WISP only" proposition. I do not understand the WISP bashing part of this post at all. Feel free to debate the merits of my plan but please keep the anti-WISP rhetoric to yourself and please do not put words into my mouth. If my proposal allows everyone equal access to licenses for wireless broadband (WISPs or others) then I am all for that. Your plan rewards the rich only. I do not support that.

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