[opendtv] Re: New transition web site

  • From: "Bob Miller" <robmxa@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 10 Mar 2007 15:23:17 -0500

On 3/10/07, Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
At 11:04 AM -0500 3/7/07, Bob Miller wrote:
>You mean that the new owners will not have gotten the spectrum for
>free and therefore cannot use it like broadcasters do and provide free
>OTA programming.

No. I mean that they will have a different cost basis for operations
- that they will need to recover the cost of the spectrum IN ADDITION
to the operating and programming costs that broadcasters must recover.


They don't have to recover the cost of the spectrum. That is an
investment. You try to make a return on an investment. You get the
cost of the spectrum back, plus or minus, when you sell it.

All they have to do once their check has been cashed is try to make as
much money with this spectrum as they can for as long as they have it.

Everything else is just accounting.

Furthermore, this spectrum will NOT come with must
carry/retransmission consent rights, which means that the new
operators will not have millions in subscriber fee payments each year
to help pay the bills, UNLESS they charge fees for the services they
deliver via this spectrum.

None of this rules out free services, it just means that the new
spectrum users will operate at a disadvantage relative to the
broadcasters who get the spectrum for free and get retrans fees as
well.

Agreed but I don't see retrans fees as necessarily a good thing for
broadcasters. It may in the end be seen as a distraction that led to
failure. What if no one uses OTA below channel 51? What if after the
transition Congress decides that no one is using OTA  channels below
51 and therefore they too should be sold. Especially if they get big
bucks for next springs auction.

There is no reason other than political clout for broadcasters, in
that event, to be protected any longer by must carry. They will,
without spectrum, be just another content provider if they do have
content.

As to broadcasters political clout. Is it possible that it is waning?
What with smart radios being allowed to operate in their spectrum, the
abject fear they displayed in the modulation fights (except for
Sinclair) and the failure so far to get multicast must carry. Is it
possible that Congress does not see them as being the power they once
were?

If so I think their spectrum is at risk and if so it was because of
their reliance on must carry instead of tending to their REAL reason
for existence, OTA spectrum.

There is a company, Cyren Call, that is proposing to manage a chunk of
spectrum including that set aside for early responders. They would
sell slots of time to commercial customers and make all the spectrum
needed by early responders to be available on a priority basis.
Something we verbally proposed doing both to the FCC and Senator
McCain's office years ago.

I think that it is time to make a similar proposal for spectrum below
51. Do as Craig has suggested for years. Time is right. Take the
spectrum back, bundle it in large statistically multiplexed channels
using the latest and greatest modulation and codec.

Bob Miller


Regards
Craig



----------------------------------------------------------------------
You can UNSUBSCRIBE from the OpenDTV list in two ways:

- Using the UNSUBSCRIBE command in your user configuration settings at 
FreeLists.org

- By sending a message to: opendtv-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with the word 
unsubscribe in the subject line.




----------------------------------------------------------------------
You can UNSUBSCRIBE from the OpenDTV list in two ways:

- Using the UNSUBSCRIBE command in your user configuration settings at FreeLists.org
- By sending a message to: opendtv-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with the word 
unsubscribe in the subject line.

Other related posts: