Reverse Incentive Actions: Broadcasts Get Their Due

The broadcast industry has some choices to make.  They are being asked to free up spectrum based on an incenting them to return the spectrum to the government for resale to the carriers.


The value of the spectrum can be enhanced by the way the broadcast industry partners work together.


This spectrum shift requires planning.  To help we are gathering industry experts for a virtual event that will be streamed on October 19th 2012 and will be available in archive as this event.


The discussion will focus on challenges facing the television broadcasters as they decide whether to participate in the auction and how to calibrate their bids for optimal results. Participants will discuss the requirements in the Spectrum Act, the FCC’s recent Notice of Rulemaking Proposal (NPRM) as well as unresolved legal issues. Other panels will include a discussion of valuation and policy issues facing broadcasters.


As a virtual event there is a charge of $150 to attend, however government employees (this means you Congressional staff, FCC, NTIA etc.) should email me for free or per diem rates as needed.  3 hours of CLE credit are also available.







8:45 AM – 9:00 AM Introduction – Opening Remarks:

  • Harold Furchtgott-Roth, Former FCC Commissioner (Opening Remarks)
  • Barlow Keener, Keener Law Group (Introduction)



9:00 AM – 10:00 AM       Legal Perspective:

The Rules of the Auction Process

The opening panel will provide an overview of critical elements of the broadcast incentive auction as well as unsettled issues in the FCC’s recent NPRM. It will compare the upcoming reverse incentive auction with prior FCC auction processes. The panel will also discuss legal appeal process for the reverse incentive auction and potential pitfalls auction participants should consider.

  • Rebecca Hanson            FCC
  • John Hane                       Pillsbury Law
  • Brian Madden                  Lerman Senter
  • Marty Stern                      K&L Gates

10:00 AM -11:00 AM       Valuation:
Valuing The Reverse Auction Assets and Related Business Issues

The second panel will build on the legal explanation of the first panel. It will consider how the auction process and other factors will impact auction valuations and broadcasters decisions to participate. Panel topics will include general auction valuation expectations, variations in spectrum value by type of broadcaster and geography, and valuation considerations for broadcasters to consider when participating in the auction.

  • Coleman Bazelon            Brattle Group
  • Mark Fratrik                     BIA / Kelsey
  • Major Investment Bank   (Invited)
  • J. Armand Musey            Summit Ridge Group


11:00 AM – 12:00 PM     Policy Perspective:

Important Social, Political and Economic Policy Implications

Our final panel will step beyond strict legal and economic considerations and evaluate the FCC’s goals versus those of the television broadcast industry. The panel will discuss issues including implications for news access in rural areas, implications for other FCC license holders, and other policy concerns.

  • Preston Marshall             Univ. of S. California
  • Fred Campbell                 CLIP
  • Trey Hanbury                  Hogan Lovells
  • Barlow Keener                 Keener Law Group



As you can see, we have gathered leading experts in the legal, financial and policy files to discuss the implications of the FCC’s upcoming television broadcast incentive auction on the television broadcasting industry.


The WebRTCbook, Book Review.

We have to give Dan Burnett and Alan Johnston alot of credit for getting a book out so quickly on such dynamic content.  For years the elite of SIP have known that the SIP protocol was mired in the telecom strategies that represent so many additional complexities to the protocol that a “SIP Lite” vision was always in play.

WebRTC in a lot of ways goes beyond the SIP Lite dream and into the web itself, however there are some rough patches in the road still to be worked out.

So the the WebRTC book has not only been a great addition to the understanding of what WebRTC can represent but also a commitment on the author’s parts (they envision frequent revisions) that may turn this from a book ebook to a living document and who knows even a model for us to follow on how to implement WebRTC.

The book does its best to give us a plan for implementation by way of psuedo code.  While this looks like a weakness in the book it is actually a fair statement of where we stand in the implementations.

In future generations of the book I expect to see real examples of code, but the psuedo code is adequate for most developers to get a sense how to implement WebRTC in whatever platform they choose in future.

And keeping track of the platforms has to be a key ingredient.  With Alan’s history in the IETF and Dan’s history in the W3C; I would expect to see them acting as a key focal point for them to manage the updates on where the blending of WebRTC and HTML5 will take us

I recommend the book as a guide to where we are and where we are headed.

Stay connect and get up to speed by reading the book.WebRTC

A Century of Links Can’t be Ignored, but Can be Debated

Rarely do I let the here and now interfere with my writing about the future. Companies merge and divest in their own time at their own speed. When Rupert Murdoch, says he is splitting the assets and then in talking with David Faber it becomes clear all he is doing is doubling the accounting. I just let it pass. When people call for RIM to split and give up the handset business, while ogling over the tight integration of Apple. I let it pass.

However, CenturyLink seems to have merged the worst parts of its acquisitions. The US West assets that became Qwest and were merged with Century Links’s other acquisition of Embarq seems to have given us a less than perfect discussion. While Craig Moffet has been a fan of Qwest’s “leave it in” strategy of keeping the cash cow copper milked in the outside plant, Qwest has been doing some very nice solutions with Ethernet for other wireless carrier’s backhaul.

However, my former colleague Peter Copeland was given the task of advocating the copper DSL alternative in favor of WISPs. I feel for Peter. He is a brilliant guy. Peter did his best in his analysis to paint the picture that CenturyLink wanted to defend a century of copper being used to link things together today.

However, the analysis shows the problem with the FCC’s transition of the “voice” network. As I have pointed out several times, we are becoming a wireless not a wireline world and we are only using our smart phones 15% of the time for voice. The burden of migrating the old infrastructure is not about maintaining status quo copper, it is to “ensure universal availability of modern networks capable of providing advanced mobile voice and broadband service ”. In my area I have had fun showing the shucking of copper that is going on by my local operator.

More is the pity.

When Peter is charged with defending the cash cow and suggesting that WISPs are not an alternative, he has to ignore the impact of Cooper’s law on wireless and Metcalfe’s law on network build outs. In other words, he has to isolate the future from the current moment in time. The technological arguments made in the separate document run against the commissions own experience in looking at the opportunities with Wi-Fi and TV White Space. Brough Turner does a great job exploring the future here and for the real engineers his further link to Wikipedia should be read.

However, this is a simpler discussion. Is it time for the USF replacement CAF to be a step forward or merely a maintenance plan. In Centurylink’s arguments the old is advocated without a migration strategy and that flies in the face of the CAF goal to “minimize the universal service contribution
burden on consumers and businesses ”. As our friend Richard Shockey would point the technology that CenturyLink is advocating is suffering from an end of life cycle that is going to keep increasing the costs.

After a century of copper and quarter century of USF, the time has come to see the future fulfilled with something that expands the core of competition and not lifelines links to the past.

If I am making sense to you and more importantly if you have a goal of seeing the unserved or underserved have access to the same experience as the rest of us. Please file with the commission your comments .

My other invitations to participate:
To all my US readers Happy Independence day, The Internet has given us all a lot of independence, I am hoping that it will always do so. Even if the ITU wants to mandate the way our equipment works.

For my friends hoping to see the product guys exert some power, I wrote this article Join us on the conference call August 16th to see if Apple Tel is the answer.

And on the M2M side, Matt Gleeson tells me I am about proactive systems. I think I am just advocating logically. What do you think? Join us on the webinar. July 11th.

Tell us about your use of the Internet and your concerns about Net Neutrality .

Again, I appreciate your reading these articles to the end and I look forward to hearing from you.

A little green and way to Literal @EnVii

Our post about #DevCon5 got this response from @EnVii

@DevConFive since when is HTML considered a ‘programming’ language? hint: ‘M’ stands for ‘markup’

While the statement is true the reality is that Programming gets embedded into the markup and with the browser acting more like a client server model the programming calls are coming from the blend.

That is why Peter Lubbers now at Google who wrote the book Pro HTML5 Programming. It is also why Programming in HTML5 has over 45 M results.

But more importantly the reason its called #DevCon5 is that #HTML5 is the glue for the mix we are showcasing at the event. You should come and see the whole picture

Would you “like” it if I bothered Tweeting 2B or Not2B

If someone is clever enough to make an application of following the Wall Street Journal 2B index of companies, I will work with them to promote it, but it will also add to the paradox.

The paradox is that about 2/3rds of the postings to Twitter are through the APIs. So in effect you have to ask the question is anyone really listening or is everyone just manipulatively “sharing and retweeting”.

Likewise, I have gotten to the point that most of my Facebook posts are done remotely.

After “liking” Google+ for a while I made the mistake of friending both a Gay Advocate who posts every opportunity I have to join a community I have little interest in seeing and an Evangelist who counter posts and wants me to understand the implications of straying from the true path. In other words I have been driven off my own page.

So where is community in all this? Is a community represented by the number of distractions they send? The whole world seems to have gone mad with distractions? No offense to the Queen’s Jubilee, but nothing corporate seems to have any traction in this world. On my radio, if I give them 22 minutes they give me the world, if I give them 44 minutes I wasted 22 waiting for something new, and that repetition is rampant on CNN, FOX, CNBC, etc.

Even the Wall Street Journal can’t seem to keep focused. No offense to Walt Mossberg , but when I get the WSJ I immediately go to Page 2 in the Marketplace section (hence the 2B reference) and look for the major players in our space. Instead, I get to read about a 6 person app company that wants to be viral. Bless them all, but I think this belongs somewhere else. This week’s WSJs had drivel in the way of carrier coverage. Even the Wednesday story about the carriers changing their billing models was more focused on the Apple, and gave Apple more credit than Skype for stealing away voice minutes. They also barely touched the news that Verizon had acquired Hughes Telematics .

Forgive me for saying this but where is the corporate news today? If the big boys are Apple vs. Google have the carriers past in to Western Union or Rail Road oblivion ?

I chided a friend who was complaining at TIA’s event. CTIA’s shows are today’s Supercomm filled with a plethora of peripherals while trying to retain the core. Talking to a friend who recently left a small carrier we talked about the consolidation of the industry and how that makes it hard for the trade shows to show opportunity. Big Carriers need big deals and big partners. Keeping the trade show moving requires focus on the future. The Internet should represent unlimited opportunity not consolidation and that should be more so for the Mobile Internet?

We partner with TMC because we are more than a trade show. We are a lead generation and an SEO brand service that looks to gather everyone that progresses the Mobile Internet. We highlight the mobile Internet, not just apps du jour, but the drivers for that it HTML5, the enchantment of things in M2M, the impact of what can impact you locally with Super Wi-Fi, and a bunch of other aspect of connectivity in Mobility Tech. While everyone else thinks I run several shows, I am really focused on one thing the next phase of the Internet.
Including the visualization of the Internet .

At Axeda’s 2012, Thanks to TMC I got to do my favorite part of the job, interview people for the M2M Evolution site which is seen by over 24,000 visitors monthly.

I don’t consider myself a reporter, but I am an engaging interviewer. And I am certainly focused on the Internet industries future. It’s easy to decide you want to get noticed, but in an age where everyone is making noise, perhaps a better choice is to give information that matters.

The reason that the news world has gotten strident and repetitive is because everyone is looking for something for nothing. Real costs are involved with carrying the news, and what was a license requirement, is now a teaser. We substitute People magazine for Life and Time puts on their cover something Playboy would be embarrassed to show.

I write these weekly epistles to keep the community engaged, not to stream another bright shiny object your way. Your time is valuable and we want you invest it with us.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Does anyone have enough time anymore to enjoy their Memories

– Does anyone have enough time anymore to enjoy their Memories.
For those of us in the US, I wish you an observant Memorial Day. Next Week I will be in the district and visit my aunt. Her father, my grandfather was a gun designer for the Navy. He was also a Sergeant during WWI, which he was promoted to since he was the only one of the farm boys that could read. Clearly our society has changed a lot particularly when you consider that our military is stationed in over 75% of the countries in the world. The reason we are in 75% of the world’s countries has more to do with commerce and commodities than with military aspirations. Perhaps we should make it an International Holiday. Or perhaps we should consider what an amazing transition from an agricultural isolationist pre 1917; to a literate International power in less than 100 years.

One thing that’s truly amazing to see is how the military solution that started the Internet has changed the world. If information is power, the Internet has shifted power more than any other military effort. Jonathan Stewart joked about the Afghanistan & Iraq wars after the Arab Spring started “couldn’t we have just tweeted”. The transitions in culture the Internet has caused are bound to continue. At Devcon5 I often ask Jason Hoffman to speak He is the CEO of Joyent which competes with the likes of Amazon with their virtualized cloud offerings. He points out that data is a commodity business. From Wall Street we know that information has shelf life. I unfortunately am more of a historian, so often I stay focused on a piece of information that has grown stale for most money makers, but I believe you watch for the trends in the news.

The world assembles in China, but the components are coming from everywhere. It will be interesting to see as China’s role continues to grow what changes in the next 100 years. In replacing my phone’s hot spot capability, I went to a carrier that gave me two choices, Huawei or ZTE. While Sir Terry Matthews sold boards to the CEO of Huawei back in the 80’s now we see the rise of Chinese brands and by the way, I still believe we are going to see the rise of Chinese standards. While the world is focused on Frequency based LTE, I think the TDD standards, championed by China, are going to win out in the end. That’s one of the reasons our Crossfire Mobility Tech/ M2M keynotes include Hamid Ahmadi of Huawei with our friend Hossein Eslambolchi of 2020 Venture Partners The Internet commodity is transforming into more than transport and into services hence the further marketing term “Cloud”.

As a historian new marketing terms are often frustrating, (for example I should call myself a “curator”), the M2M cloud discussion has made the term Platform universal hence this week’s M2M article

Speaking of being leery of marketing, I would like to know if Whitey Bluestein has some inside information when he suggests Apple should become an MVNO? Apple has a great relationship with Capital Cities who learned some hard lessons when they made the Disney and ESPN MVNOs. I hope Apple’s Tim Cook will take the time with Disney and not arrogantly think the Apple brand solves the problem of managing wireless networks.

Speaking of arrogance, I was asked to elaborate on my analysis of Facebook, so I am going to end with this link As we celebrate memorial day, let’s not let arrogance get in the way of our future together. Take the time to enjoy the memories, regardless of where you are.

What’s to “Like” about the Facebook IPO

I have to tell you I feel for a lot of people on the Facebook IPO. Let me walk through my thoughts in as organized a manner as a maniac can get.

First of all I am proud of the general consumer of stock. A lot of Wall Street was expecting Facebook Frenzy and thought that the demand was going to give them a lot of people wanting Facebook at any price so the traders are the ones that have been hurt the most by the IPO. Given the fact that Wall Street continues to not recognize the pain on main street, maybe this can help them get on the Cluetrain.

Secondly, I feel for the employees of Facebook. In the past on another stock, I made the mistake of not declaring the value of my stock until required by law. The result was that my shares were valued at the price of the opening as income. The result at the end was that I owed the government 75% of the value of the stock by the time I sold it. (And Yet I am still a Liberal). My expectation is the Facebook employees will have a lot of guys like me in their mix, so I feel for them. This includes Eduardo Saverin who is trying to solve the problem of paying to much.

Third, I feel for NASDAQ and Morgan Stanley who were suppose to have a shining moment and ended up with egg on their face. These opportunities to learn from your mistake often come at the price of executives being removed, or worse the blame being misplaced. Either way, I feel for those involved.

Now for those of us still interested in investing in Facebook the stock restrictions end in about 85 days. I would say wait until those who were as ignorant as I and not as smart as Eduardo, sell to pay their taxes.
Then you can buy the stock. Don’t be surprised if that dip brings it down into the teens. Their a lot of people with stock and taxes to cope with.

And I feel for those people who are paying those taxes the most, since I am sure they will not see the benefits of being good citizens, just the cost.

And for those in that pain, I want you to know that I am “like” you.

Last Weeks Rant – Well That Was Disappointing

For those who didn’t notice I tried to use the mail merge tool and sent a note with the subject “Funny how the conversation has diminished with all the tools at our disposal” . It was suppose to lead into this email.
Other than three people with an unsubscribe request, I am not sure anyone opened it. Here is what I wanted you to read.

I was listening to NPR this weekend and they were having a debate as to whether we were really communicating on the Internet or just falling in love with our voice (and those that agree with us). It occurred to me that I was not hearing like I used to from friends about my articles and posts.
So I am hoping you find something interesting in my posts and respond. I will post your replies on appropriate blog or keep them to myself if that is what you prefer.

Here are the places I posted last week.

First of all I gave a lecture at Pace University to a class the Internet as Universal Service. It’s an interesting contrast looking at POTS, IP, GSM and Wi-Fi. In the end I think Wi-Fi is going to be the only safe technology to trust as end to end. I say this since LTE is being deployed as proprietary as possible by the carriers. I understood that for the first few years since the drive was there to get something to catch up to data demand. However, it’s clear this is going to be the norm and not the early adoption issue.

Cooper’s Law may be thwarted by bad deployments and the opportunity for competition is pretty sad. Last week we saw Lightsquared give up the ghost, I swapped my phone from a lesser party back to one of the two big players. I went to order from Clearwire and realized the process was going to drive me nuts so I gave up. Pretty Sad and it indicates why there is reluctance to leave the incumbents.

Candidly it’s easier and the fact that the cable operators sold spectrum co to Verizon Wireless points out how hard it is to break in. While our friends in WISPA, do a great job supporting cost conscious customers, the general consumer market is not very flexible. When companies like Lightsquared go under and Clearwire revamps it makes it harder for the next company to break out.

I have friends tell me that Apple and Google are the real carriers and looking at how resentful ATT is that the bulk of the bucks go to Cupertino you can see there is no need for Apple to hurry to buy a carrier.

However, the market cap on Clearwire is so low and the bandwidth is so great, now may be the time. Perhaps it will be Amazon.

I should also note that I was at Blackberry Jam in Orlando two weeks ago so I don’t mean my quoting of others to suggest I think that devices are going to be duopoly like the wireline. In reality I think Microsoft and RIM are both on the right track. You will hear more about this as soon as I get my interviews posted. Let me say this the closer we get to full compliance to HTML5 the more opportunity for end to end to win. This will come up when we do DevCon5 in NYC in July. Http://

Not to be pitchy, but that’s also why I added the Bring Your Own Device / Wi-Fi sessions to the 4GWE event (now called Mobility Tech Conference & Expo) . The business of the mobile Internet is very nascent and while we can be glad the carriers have gotten past WAP. We still have a long way to go before the business is mature.

Hell we can’t even agree on what’s mature yet. Yahoo! As a stock finally found a new height, but we will see if it maintains. I was hoping for a new mobile commerce model from Scott Thompson . I guess he may have to pull a Steve Jobs and rise like a phoenix from the Ashes. Speaking of Ashes, Facebook looks like a good buy in about another 98 days . Although based on the amount of stock already out there and NASDAQ faulty T+1 systems. I may have to add a few more days for the market to equalize.

Mark Cuban said this was the most important IPO ever and in some ways he was right . The stock may have single-handedly killed the tech bubble on Wall Street. I don’t know if you watched but for almost every other tech stock in the market it was like a scene from “On the Beach’ . Nothing was moving. Even Apple was dropping as the capital went out to meet up with Facebook.

The market however is efficient and is back to work. One thing that kept coming up on Wall Street and with Gigaom is that Facebook has yet to figure out wireless . So let’s end with a discussion of largest user of wireless – machines. I did a webinar with ATT and AXEDA last week that was very good but left me questions about the singularity being near.

Anyway I hope you enjoyed my rant and linking you to most of the places you can find my thoughts. As always I like it best when the audience talks back. I hope to hear from you soon.

Kind Regards,


Devcon5 New Additions

If the Chips Get it? Why are the Apps so far behind?
At Devcon5 this week Google, Mozilla, nVidia, and Samsung representatives in the Khronos Group and WebGL experts are going to talk about the future of graphics in HTML5.
Candidly, This is going to be an amazing session about rendering and it should put to rest a bunch of my friends that keep suggesting that Device OSes are the answer.
The reality is the chips are being optimized for the web not for devices and as Charles Jolley formerly of Apple will tell you, the screen is where you look. Yes, design of the hardware is important, but most of us look at more than one screen. And software is the glue and HTML5 is the bond of the Internet.
Devcon5 is a design conference for those of us going to be alwayson the web.
Designers, Developers and Deployers all need to join us here.