NAB and MSTV want FCC to clarify new rule

The NAB and the MSTV have asked the FCC to clarify one aspect of its Modification Orders released last week.

Both broadcast organizations want to ensure that the FCC's reference to Mobile-Satellite Service (MSS) providers' access to certain spectrum at 2 GHz as primary has no bearing on the current use of that spectrum for Broadcast Auxiliary Service (BAS).

Broadcasters are concerned that the FCC’s characterization of MSS providers’ access to spectrum in the 2000-2020 MHz/2180-2200 MHz bands in the Modification Orders as “primary” unintentionally may cause confusion regarding the status of MSS and BAS in the bands.

With the use of the term "primary" in its FCC ruling, broadcasters are worried that the word may alter their current rights to use the relevant spectrum on a primary basis.

TV stations use the Broadcast Auxiliary Service for on- location news coverage. To provide BAS, broadcasters use spectrum at 2 GHz that the FCC has targeted for reallocation to MSS.

Under the FCC’s rules, broadcasters’ access to the 2 GHz spectrum used for BAS has always been, on a primary basis. In the FCC's BAS reallocation plan, the 1990-2025 band may be allocated to the fixed and mobile services on a secondary basis, but only after September 6, 2010.

Both organizations want the FCC to clarify that the Modification Order just implements the underlying MSS relocation and that it has no bearing on broadcasters current primacy in the bands.

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