CEA urges court to reject broadcaster suit against FCC

DetailsMichelle Clancy | 30 December 2014

The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), CTIA: The Wireless Association, Competitive Carriers Association and the Expanding Opportunities for Broadcasters Coalition have filed briefs in federal district court supporting the FCC's plan to repack TV spectrum as it executes the incentive auction meant to free up spectrum for advanced wireless services.

The National Association of Broadcasters and Sinclair Broadcasting are suing the FCC, telling the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit that the FCC's TVStudy repacking methodology "fails to protect against terrain losses, denies protection to areas that are currently unpopulated, and fails to protect populations served by fill-in translators".

The associations argued against that claim, saying in a filing on 23 December that those criticisms are "unpersuasive and irrelevant," and that the NAB and Sinclair are advocating the use of "antiquated software" that would make an incentive auction impossible.

"The Commission's repacking deadline exceeds the deadlines several broadcasters (including NAB) proposed, reasonably accounts for the challenges the repacking process entails, and accommodates 'delays or unexpected challenges' by providing for temporary facilities and extensions in appropriate cases," the groups said.