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AAPC Wireless Messaging News

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FRIDAY — AUGUST 6, 2010 - ISSUE NO. 418

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Paging and Wireless Messaging Home Page image Newsletter Archive image Carrier Directory image Recommended Products and Services
Reference Papers Consulting Glossary of Terms Send an e-mail to Brad Dye

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Dear Friends of Wireless Messaging,

I hope everyone is enjoying the summer as much as I am. At least those readers in the northern hemisphere.

I need to report an error from last week. I was in too much of a hurry to finish the newsletter and included USA Mobility's First Quarter Operating Results instead of their Second Quarter Operating Results. I corrected the mistake later in the day (last Friday). If you missed the corrected issue, please click here.

Thanks to my friend and reader, Brian Gilmore for bringing this to my attention.

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Now on to more news and views.

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Wireless Messaging News
  • Emergency Radio Communications
  • Wireless Messaging
  • Critical Messaging
  • Telemetry
  • Paging
  • VoIP
  • Wi-Fi
  • WiMAX
  • Location-Based Services
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This is the AAPC's weekly newsletter about Wireless Messaging. You are receiving this because I believe you have requested it. This is not a SPAM. If you have received this message in error, or you are no longer interested in these topics, please click here, then click on "send" and you will be promptly removed from the mailing list.

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iland internet sulutions This newsletter is brought to you by the generous support of our advertisers and the courtesy of iland Internet Solutions Corporation. For more information about the web-hosting services available from iland Internet Solutions Corporation, please click on their logo to the left.

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A new issue of The Wireless Messaging Newsletter gets posted on the web each week. A notification goes out by e-mail to subscribers on most Fridays around noon central US time. The notification message has a link to the actual newsletter on the Internet. That way it doesn't fill up your incoming e-mail account.

There is no charge for subscription and there are no membership restrictions. Readers are a very select group of wireless industry professionals, and include the senior managers of many of the world's major Paging and Wireless Data companies. There is an even mix of operations managers, marketing people, and engineers — so I try to include items of interest to all three groups. It's all about staying up-to-date with business trends and technology. I regularly get readers' comments, so this newsletter has become a community forum for the Paging, and Wireless Data communities. You are welcome to contribute your ideas and opinions. Unless otherwise requested, all correspondence addressed to me is subject to publication in the newsletter and on my web site. I am very careful to protect the anonymity of those who request it.


Editorial Opinion pieces present the opinions of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of AAPC, its publisher, or its sponsors.

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Anyone wanting to help support The Wireless Messaging Newsletter can do so by clicking on the PayPal Donate button above.

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Newspapers generally cost 75¢ a copy and they hardly ever mention paging. If you receive some benefit from this publication maybe you would like to help support it financially? A donation of $25.00 would represent approximately 50¢ a copy for one year. If you are willing and able, please click on the PayPal Donate button above. No trees were harmed in the creation of this newsletter; however, several billion electrons were slightly inconvenienced.

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Brad Dye, Ron Mercer, Allan Angus, and Vic Jackson are friends and colleagues who work both together and independently, on wireline and wireless communications projects. Click here  for a summary of their qualifications and experience. They collaborate on consulting assignments, and share the work according to their individual expertise and their schedules.

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If you would like to have information about advertising in this newsletter, please click here.

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aapc logo American Association of Paging Carriers

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Thank you to our vendor members for your continued support of the industry and AAPC! Please take a moment and review the products and services listed below.


Prism Systems International, Inc.
11175 Cicero Drive, Suite 100 | Alpharetta, GA 30022 | 678 242 5290
Prism Systems International (PSI) designs powerful Message Management systems using paging and other wireless technologies. PSI’s Prism Paging division is a market leader in providing automated paging systems. PSI now introduces Prism-IPX Systems featuring easy-to-manage integrated wireless messaging for healthcare, energy, industrial, public safety, aged care/assisted living, and government markets. Using direct VoIP interface Prism-IPX Systems provide fast, reliable dispatch of critical alerts and messages to cellular/DECT/SIP phones, pagers, e-mail, machine-to-machine, remote control devices, and LED display boards.


Unication USA, Inc.
1901 E. Lamar Boulevard | Arlington, TX 76006 | 817 926 6771
Unication is a premier supplier of paging and communication equipment. Unication has continued to invest and innovate to bring added value to the Worldwide Messaging Marketplace, including a Dual Frequency Alpha Pager, a Password Protected Alpha Pager and a brand new Wideband/Narrowband Auto-Migration Pager called the Legend+. Unication is committed to be your Quality and Value Leader in providing communications equipment and solutions to the Global Market.


Commtech Wireless
8301 Cypress Plaza Drive, Suite 100 | Jacksonville, FL 32256 | 904 281 0073
Commtech Wireless, A Division of Amcom Software, is the leading developer of event-driven connectivity software and a manufacturer of paging hardware. More than 7,500 customers in 53 countries have deployed real-time communications platforms from Commtech Wireless. Commtech Wireless offers a portfolio of innovative software and hardware solutions as well as professional services. Its global reach provides support for customers in key vertical markets.

Critical Response Systems
1670 Oakbrook Drive, Suite 370 | Norcross, GA 30093 | 770 441 9559
Critical Response Systems manufactures two-way paging and narrowband mobile data solutions for use in public safety, hospital, and industrial applications. Our turn-key SPARKGAP system delivers 5-second individual and group messages, tracks users as they receive, read, and respond to each message, and protects sensitive message content with 128-bit AES encryption. Coverage scales from a single building with a few users up to thousands of square miles and thousands of users.

Blk 70 Ubi Crescent #01-07 | Ubi Techpark, Singapore 408570 | +65 6547 1127
Daviscomms, Ltd. was established in Jan 2000 and is in the business of providing contract design and manufacturing services for a wide range of high quality consumer and industrial wireless electronics products such as pagers, telemetry receiver modules, mobile tracking devices, and printed circuit board assemblies. Our design center is located in Singapore, serving our global customers’ needs for qualified and experienced product design expertise to bring their great product ideas and concepts to life. Our wholly owned subsidiary, Daviscomms (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd, based in Penang, Malaysia, an MS ISO 9001:2000 certified company, has a 4000 square meter state-of-the-art manufacturing facility utilizing world class manufacturing systems and processes to cater to the varied needs of our customers’ products.

Digital Paging Company
10825 Burbank Boulevard | North Hollywood, CA 91601 | 800 540 5700
With over 15 years of experience in paging and our continuous dedication to product reliability, availability, and superior customer service, DPC has proven to be your ideal paging partner. Please visit our exhibit to see our newest product lines including the new VP101 & VP220Pro, 2-tone switchable wideband/narrowband voice pagers, TP200 desktop pager, PILOT & GOLD XP rechargeable alphanumeric pagers, RP125 Wireless Repeater, text to voice pagers, and 2-line wireless LED signs. DPC also has the best solution for in-house paging systems with the latest in-house pagers and various paging transmitters, and Telemetry signs for your every need.

DX Radio Systems, Inc.
10941 Pendleton Street | Sun Valley, CA 91352 | 818 252 6700
DX Radio Systems is known around the world for their commitment to ensure that the products you purchase from them today will give you what you need to perform in today’s market. DX Radio Systems is the only turnkey supplier of simulcast paging systems since the withdrawal of Motorola and Glenayre. DX Radio is one of three manufacturers of low-band base stations, and produces conventional stations (5-500 watts) in ALL frequency bands and in several performance levels.

Hark Technologies
717 Old Trolley Road, Suite 6 #163 | Summerville, SC 29485 | 843 821 6888
Hark Technologies designs and manufactures innovative products including Unified Messaging, Protocol Converters, Paging Encoders, and PDRs. The Omega Unified Messaging offers carriers and resellers the ability to provide enhanced voice/fax mail services on the same number as the customer’s pager and includes the major paging protocols such as TAP, TNPP, GCP, SMPP, SMTP, SNPP, WCTP, and HTTP. The ISI product can be used to eliminate costly leased lines and replace them with an internet connection.

635 East 185th Street | Cleveland, OH 44119 | 216 531 1313
Provide reliable wireless text messaging to your Smart Phones, Alphanumeric Pagers, and AlphaCast® LED sign boards. Whether you require paging software, an on-site / campus paging system, wireless remote control, or GPS Tracking, InfoRad can assist you at all levels of your system design and implementation. The InfoRad Wireless Messaging Software Suite includes single computer, network client / server messaging software, enterprise wireless messaging integration, robust wireless monitoring, control, and alarm solutions.

ISC Technologies
301 Oak Street | Quincy, IL 62301 | 217 221 0985
ISC Technologies manufactures Glenayre and Skydata paging infrastructure products and supports them with a staff of factory-trained technicians. We also stock a wide variety of used and factory refurbished Glenayre, Skydata and Motorola paging equipment. If you are looking for paging transmitters, satellite link receivers, RF link equipment, transmitter control equipment or paging switch infrastructure we have a product that will meet your needs and budget.

Microspace Communications
3100 Highwoods Boulevard | Raleigh, NC 27604 | 919 850 4500
Microspace Communications operates the world’s largest private satellite broadcast network for business and has been serving the needs of the wireless messaging industry since 1990. Microspace is dedicated to offering a variety of cost-effective, open systems simulcast network solutions that can be tailored to meet the needs of the carrier. Microspace supports all formats including analog Bell 202, voice, TNPP, and advance control (CNET, RFC and C2000). Shared CNET control and Internet TNPP services are also available.

MultiTone Electronics
PO Box 5142 | Augusta, ME 04332 | 207 622 7963
MultiTone specializes in delivering integrated wireless communications systems to meet mission-critical communication problems. Whether you need on-site paging, integrated alarms, wireless telephony solutions, or to ensure staff safety through lone worker systems, MultiTone has a solution to meet your demands.

Onset Technology
460 Totten Pond Road | Waltham, MA 02451 | 781 916 0044
Founded in 1997, Onset Technology has pioneered software development enhancing the functionality of Enterprise Mobility systems and is the leading provider of advanced high-priority messaging systems for Smartphones. Flagship METAmessage software solutions include Advanced Paging Solutions, Priority Messaging and Collaboration Tools, and Emergency Communications Solutions. Smartphone users in large scale deployments rely on METAmessage in industries that include Financial and Professional Services, Manufacturing, Education and the Public Sector - federal, state, and local.

RF Demand Solutions
6501 Scott Lane | Crystal Lake, IL 60014 | 847 829 4730
Evaluation, Design, Construction & Maintenance of dependable wireless networks. Why rely on commercial carriers for life-threatening or business critical wireless communications? A private wireless network from RFDS is constructed specifically for your needs and provides the most reliable, simple, and cost-effective alternative to commercial service. RF Demand Solutions was founded by Patrick Hood and Lowell Todd, two seasoned veterans of the wireless industry with complimentary competencies and years of hands-on experience.

Swissphone Telecom AG
Faelmis Street 21 | Samstagern | Switzerland, 8833 | 0041 44 786 77 01
As you may have heard, the FCC has mandated that all non-Federal public safety licensees using 25kHz radio systems migrate to narrowband 12.5kHz channels by January 1, 2013. Swissphone RE729 Fire Pagers are narrowband-ready, meaning that if you invest in Swissphone pagers before your department switches to narrowband, you'll be narrowband compliant and you won't need to buy new equipment after the switch.

United Communications Corporation
PO Box 26048 | Little Rock, AR 72221-6048 | 888 763 7550
United Communications Corporation the largest and most trusted name in paging, wireless distribution and fulfillment in North America, continues to lead the way with our new line of high quality paging products. Please take the time to browse through our Eagle product line available NOW . . . from United Communications Corporation. We also offer programming, labeling, refurbishing, frequency changes, housing changes and other repair services by trained technicians.


AAPC Executive Director
441 N. Crestwood Drive
Wilmington, NC 28405
Tel: 866-301-2272
AAPC Regulatory Affairs Office
Suite 250
2154 Wisconsin Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20007-2280
Tel: 202-223-3772
Fax: 202-315-3587

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Advertiser Index

AAPC—American Association of Paging Carriers Preferred Wireless
CVC Paging Prism Paging
Daviscomms Ron Mercer
Easy Solutions UCOM Paging
Hark Technologies Unication USA
HMCE, Inc. United Communications Corp.
Northeast Paging WiPath Communications
Paging & Wireless Network Planners LLC  

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Google, Verizon Deny Net Neutrality Report

By Maisie Ramsay
Friday — August 6, 2010

Verizon and Google are denying a story published by the New York Times which said the two companies had negotiated a deal that would force users to pay fees to get Web content at a faster rate.

The New York Times claimed the deal could result in tiered charges for Internet access, under which providers would force users to pay higher fees for faster speeds. Such a deal would fly in the face of net neutrality tenets, under which all Internet content is treated equally.

Google and Verizon flatly denied the story in separate statements issued yesterday. Google's public policy blog stated on Twitter that "@NYTimes is wrong. We've not had any convos with VZN about paying for carriage of our traffic. We remain committed to an open internet."

Verizon said the article "fundamentally misunderstands our purpose. As we said in our earlier FCC filing, our goal is an Internet policy framework that ensures openness and accountability, and incorporates specific FCC authority, while maintaining investment and innovation. To suggest this is a business arrangement between our companies is entirely incorrect."

The story broke yesterday after its was announced that the FCC had ended a round of closed-door discussions with companies, including Google and Verizon, on Internet regulation after it failed to produce a way forward on net neutrality.

FCC Chief of Staff Edward Lazarus said the stakeholder discussions had "been productive on several fronts, but has not generated a robust framework to preserve the openness and freedom of the Internet – one that drives innovation, investment, free speech and consumer choice. All options remain on the table as we continue to seek broad input on this vital issue."

The meetings were part of the FCC's ongoing efforts to enforce net neutrality regulations in the wake of the Comcast decision. The regulations are a key interest to operators of both cable and wireless networks. The regulations could potentially undermine wireless operators' ability to manage their networks, particularly with heavy data users who pose a threat to network performance.

Source: WirelessWEEK

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Automatically Transitions From
Wideband Today to Narrowband Tomorrow


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Complete Technical Services For The Communications and Electronics Industries

Design • Installation • Maintenance • Training • Engineering • Licensing • Technical Assistance

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Ira Wiesenfeld, P.E.
Consulting Engineer
Registered Professional Engineer

Tel/Fax: 972-960-9336
Cell: 214-707-7711
7711 Scotia Dr.
Dallas, TX 75248-3112

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Joshua's Mission left arrow Helping Wounded Marines Homepage
Joshua's Mission left arrow Joshua's Mission Press Release

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Newsletter Supporter




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Paging & Wireless Network Planners

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R.H. (Ron) Mercer
217 First Street South
East Northport, NY 11731
ron mercer

Cell Phone: 631-786-9359

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Paging & Wireless Network Planners

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  • VoIP telephone access — eliminate interconnect expense
  • Call from anywhere — Prism SIP Gateway allows calls from PSTN and PBX
  • All the Features for Paging, Voicemail, Text-to-Pager, Wireless and DECT phones
  • Prism Inet, the new IP interface for TAP, TNPP, SNPP, SMTP — Industry standard message input
  • Direct Connect to NurseCall, Assisted Living, Aged Care, Remote Monitoring, Access Control Systems

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Critical Response Systems

Over 70% of first responders are volunteers
Without an alert, interoperability means nothing.

Get the Alert.

M1501 Acknowledgent Pager

With the M1501 Acknowledgement Pager and a SPARKGAP wireless data system, you know when your volunteers have been alerted, when they’ve read the message, and how they’re going to respond – all in the first minutes of an event. Only the M1501 delivers what agencies need – reliable, rugged, secure alerting with acknowledgement.

Learn More

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  Deal Direct with the Manufacturer of the Bravo Pager Line 
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The Br802 Pager is Directive 94/9/DC [Equipment Explosive Atmospheres (ATEX)] compliant.
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Telemetry Messaging Receivers (TMR) FLEX & POCSAG
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Daviscomms USA: Phone: 480-515-2344

Daviscomms (S) Pte. Ltd - Bronze Member of AAPC
Daviscomms UK: Phone: +44 7721 409412

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Narrowbanding Fallacies and Facts

August 04, 2010
By Leonard Koehnen

MissionCritical Communications

There is a great deal of misinformation throughout the industry regarding narrowbanding. The following is a list of fallacies and facts regarding narrowbanding:

Fallacy Fact
The FCC will relent in the end because of the economy and give public safety an extension. The FCC published a report in January, stating it will not relent. Be prepared for no reprieve. Even if there is, the adjacent narrowband channels are being assigned, and unless you narrowband, you will experience interference from them.
Everybody must narrowband again in 2017 so you shouldn't spend a lot of money now. There is a 2017 rule for 700 MHz users to migrate to 6.25-channel equivalency but not anybody else.
You must go to Project 25 (P25) digital voice. By Jan. 1, 2013, the minimum you must transmit is 12.5-kilohertz channel analog voice. You can employ P25 on that channel if you want.
You must scrap your system and migrate to a statewide trunked system. There is no such requirement.
You must go to 700 or 800 MHz. There is no such requirement.
If you join the state network, your fire-paging channel does not have to be narrowbanded. There is no such privilege afforded to the states.
We are so far out in a rural area, the FCC will never know we haven’t narrowbanded. You may be in the rural area but your signals can skip 100 – 200 miles in the spring and fall. If you interfere with a legally operating narrowband system, that user can file a complaint, and the FCC may take action against you.
I’m going to use my old wideband radios for temporary or close-in work. Maybe I will take them to my hunting or lake cabin. Same as above.
The radio shop is just going to add a third-party aftermarket device to narrowband my wideband-only radios. The FCC recently told MissionCritical Communications that this isn’t permitted. The radio or kit to narrowband a radio must be designed by the radio’s manufacturer and type accepted with the radio to operate in the narrowband mode.
The radio shop has played with our radios, and by tweaking them, they can make them operate narrowband. This isn’t permitted. The FCC has ruled that the radio must be designed and type accepted by the original manufacturer to be narrowbanded or it can’t be used after Jan. 1, 2013.

For more on narrowbanding see “7 Narrowbanding Tips” and “Affordable Coverage Options” in the August issue of MissionCritical Communications.

Leonard Koehnen, PE is a consulting engineer from St. Paul, Minn. He is on the MissionCritical Communications editorial advisory board. In 2011, he will celebrate 50 years of work in the electronic communications industry.

Source: RadioResource

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Flat rate repair for $55.00 per pager.

We manufacture Minitor II and III housings.

Call for pricing and availability.

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spacer United Communications Corp.
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motorola paging 888-763-7550 Fax: 888-763-7549
62 Jason Court, St. Charles, MO 63304
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Wireless Licensees are Encouraged to Participate in Comments on FCC Proposal to Revise License Renewal and Operation Rules

Initial Comments Due: spacer August 6, 2010
Reply Comments Due: spacer August 21, 2010

spacer The FCC is proposing to adopt a uniform set of renewal requirements that will apply to almost all of the Wireless Radio Services,1 as well as to standardize its policies and rules among wireless services pertaining to the discontinuance of operations. Of concern to our clients, it is also proposing changes to its rules that could impose additional buildout obligations on existing licensees. In addition, most licensees will have to report a significantly greater amount of information in their renewal applications; and may be harmed in their renewal efforts by a requirement to report violations and protests involving related companies, family members and other situations over which the licensee may have little or no control. In addition, the FCC is suggesting that it may decline to renew a license because it disagrees with the amount of money invested in the station’s construction, or the pace of construction. The FCC’s rule changes would also require disclosure of proprietary information, and the curtailment of partitioning and spectrum disaggregation options for small and rural licensees. For these reasons, we strongly encourage all of our clients holding radio licensees to participate in the attached comments objecting to problematic aspects of the FCC’s proposals, and suggesting alternative approaches.

spacer This rulemaking is applicable to almost all commercial and private radio services, and should be of particular interest to our law firm’s clients who hold authorizations issued under Part 20 (Commercial Radio Services), Part 22 (Public Mobile Services, including Cellular and Paging and Radiotelephone Services), Part 24 (Personal Communications Services), Part 27 (Miscellaneous Wireless Communications Services — e.g., WCS, BRS/EBS, 700 MHz, AWS), Part 90 (Private Land Mobile Radio Services) and Part 101 (Fixed Microwave Services, including LMDS and 39 GHz Service).

spacer By way of background, the Commission currently has a patchwork of rules governing renewal and discontinuance obligations for wireless services. In this proceeding, the FCC is proposing to create consistent requirements for renewal of licenses and consistent consequences for discontinuance of service, and to clarify construction obligations for spectrum licenses that have been divided, by geographic partitioning or disaggregation of the spectrum.

spacer We believe that small and rural wireless carriers should support the FCC’s proposals to the extent they eliminate ambiguities and uncertainties for small carriers in the license renewal process, such as the ability to file competing renewal applications. However, we are concerned about some other proposals — such as language suggesting that licensees should disclose information about subscriber counts in their renewal showings, and the requirement that renewal applications disclose the date on which they commenced service — because these are prejudicial to small and rural carriers. Not only are subscriber counts sensitive competitive information, but licensees should not be penalized if they have chosen to focus their operations in sparsely populated rural areas, that have chosen to operate “roam only” systems, or that have chosen to serve niche markets, as the FCC’s policies and rules have encouraged them to do. To the extent that the Rules suggest that a carrier’s renewal prospects might be improved by disclosing its subscriber count (even if this is voluntary), failure to include such information might leave the FCC’s staff with a false impression about the licensee’s actual level and quality of service. Similarly, we believe that the renewal showing should not require licensees to disclose the date on which they commenced service. Including this requirement in a renewal showing ignores the realities faced by many small and rural businesses and creates an inherent “sooner is better” bias in the rules, which could prejudice their license renewal prospects and prevent them from pursuing a strategy of building rural areas first (such as a rural telephone company’s wireline service area) instead of building initiating the service in more populated areas, since these areas have larger populations and are typically easier to build quickly.

spacer We believe it is important for small and rural carriers to join in comments that oppose vague and subjective criteria such as these at license renewal. If there is uncertainty in the rules, small businesses and rural telephone companies will be reluctant to make the significant investments needed to construct networks in rural and underserved areas, and they will face a difficult time attracting capital from investors and/or lenders. Moreover, the initiation of service in rural areas can often delayed due to reasons that are beyond a licensee’s control — such as a lack of suitable equipment and the need for services to develop in larger markets before rural areas become viable. As a result, rural licensees are often forced to operate “in the red” during the initial license term and may not have profitable businesses until the second term. In this regard, we believe that if a licensee has met its construction and service requirements, and if it is in substantial compliance with the FCC’s rules and policies and the Communications Act, it should be confident that its license will be renewed.

License Renewal and Competing Applications

spacer For services that are licensed by geographic area, the FCC is proposing to adopt the renewal framework it established for the 700 MHz Commercial Services Band in the 700 MHz First Report & Order (22 FCC Rcd 8064, 8092-94, ¶¶ 73-77). Under the Commission’s proposal, in order to renew their licenses, geographic-area licensees must demonstrate that they have and are continuing to provide service to the public, and are compliant with the Commission’s rules, policies and the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (the “Act”). Therefore, if the new rules are adopted as proposed, merely providing signal coverage — e.g., erecting a “license saver” system – would not be sufficient to qualify for license renewal.

spacer For renewal of site-specific licenses (e.g., primarily Paging and Land Mobile Radio Services) the FCC has proposed that licensees certify that they are operating as represented in their latest construction notification or authorization and that they are compliant with the Commission’s rules, policies and the Act. At first blush, this may seem fairly straightforward. However, such a requirement could prejudice the renewal prospects for carriers that provide an important service, but who may have been forced to shrink their operations to stay in business. For private user licensees, it could limit their ability to freely define and change their internal service areas based on business needs.

spacer With respect to both geographic and site-based services, the FCC has tentatively concluded that it should prohibit the filing of mutually-exclusive (i.e., competing) renewal applications. If the FCC denies a renewal application, the spectrum will be returned automatically (i.e., without a forfeiture hearing) to the Commission for reassignment. We believe it makes sense to eliminate the ability to file competing renewal applications. Speculators in a number of radio services (including PCS, Cellular and 2.3 GHz WCS) have seized upon a legal wrinkle to argue that they have a right to contest the license renewal in a comparative hearing, and resulting litigation has cast a legal cloud on hundreds of FCC licenses that has lasted almost three years. By supporting the Commission’s proposal — and a related freeze on competing renewal applications — licensees would foreclose the ability for challengers to contest license renewals in this manner.

Discontinuance of Service Obligations

spacer With respect to the FCC’s policies concerning the discontinuance of operations, the FCC is proposing to harmonize its rules across the Wireless Radio Services. This is significant for all wireless licensees because, under the FCC’s current policies and rules, an FCC finding of “permanent discontinuance” will result in automatic forfeiture of the license in question. For auctionable services, the forfeited license will then be available for bidding in a subsequent re-auction but the original licensee will generally be precluded from bidding for the license.

spacer The FCC seeks comment on the appropriate time period that should be used to define “permanent discontinuance” of operations and whether it makes sense to adopt a uniform definition applicable to all Wireless Radio Services. With respect to services licensed under Part 22, Part 24 and Part 27 (except BRS and EBS), and for trunked SMR, the 218-219 MHz service and the 220-222 MHz service in Part 90, it has proposed to define permanent discontinuance as 180 consecutive days during which a licensee does not operate or, in the case of commercial mobile radio service providers, does not provide service to at least one subscriber that is not affiliated with, controlled by, or related to the providing carrier. For other Part 90 radio services not listed above and for Part 101 microwave radio services, permanent discontinuance of service is defined as 365 consecutive days during which a licensee does not operate or, in the case of commercial mobile radio service providers, does not provide service to at least one subscriber that is not affiliated with, controlled by, or related to the providing carrier.

spacer For site-based Part 22 and Part 90 licensees, the FCC has proposed to expand the period of time before a station is deemed to have permanently discontinued operation from 90 consecutive days to 180 consecutive days. While this may seem generous, we note that it is inconsistent with what the FCC has proposed for CMRS operations regulated under Part 90 of the FCC’s Rules (excluding Part 90 800/900 MHz SMR operations). For the Part 90 private land mobile services, including spectrum that is used for CMRS purposes, the FCC has proposed a 12-month period during which a licensee is not required to provide service to at least one paying subscriber that is not affiliated with the carrier. The FCC’s rationale was that some services are provided on a seasonal basis, e.g., at ski resorts and beaches where services are not required all year. We believe that this consideration should also apply to the Part 22 paging, dispatch and rural radio services; and Part 24 narrowband PCS Service (collectively, messaging services) as well. Accordingly, the FCC should be urged to extend the discontinuance period for the messaging services to 12 months so that there is regulatory parity between the Part 90 CMRS services and the messaging services regulated under Parts 22 and 24.

Part 22 – Geographic Licenses Utilized for Private Internal Uses

spacer The FCC has authorized several entities to utilize Part 22 spectrum for private, internal use. Any spectrum that is being utilized in this manner should be regulated in a manner that is consistent with similar private land mobile services regulated under Part 90 of the FCC’s Rule — meaning that these licensees should be entitled to the same 12-month discontinuance period specified in Rule Section 90.157(a) without any requirement to demonstrate that they are providing service to at least one unaffiliated paying subscriber.

spacer Related to this issue are the initial construction requirements and license renewal requirements for Part 22 geographic licenses that are licensed on a private, internal use basis. While the construction coverage requirements are not specifically within the scope of this proceeding, the Commission should be urged to modify its construction coverage requirements and license renewal proposals to affirmatively recognize that stations in the Part 22 services that are authorized for private internal use will generally not be utilized to provide commercial service to the public. As a result, it is inappropriate for the FCC to base construction requirements on population coverage. Rather, the FCC should only require that the market area licensee install at least one base station and associated mobile unit within one year of license grant, except that if the frequency is being used for control purposes, that the control station be placed into operation in a manner that will allow it to communicate with at least one base station.

Performance Obligations in the Context of Partitioning and Disaggregation

spacer With respect to the satisfaction of performance (i.e., construction and operation obligations in the context of geographic partitioning and spectrum disaggregation arrangements, the FCC has concluded that the public interest would be served by requiring any party that holds an FCC license resulting from partitioning or disaggregation to independently meet the applicable construction requirements. This is a departure from current FCC rules which allow the original licensee and partitionee (or disaggragatee) to apportion responsibility for meeting the original license buildout obligations to one another as the parties deem fit. We believe our firm’s clients should oppose the FCC’s proposed rule changes to its partitioning and disaggregation rules. The “partitioner only” construction option is extremely valuable because it allows small and rural carriers and entrepreneurs to take risks that they might not otherwise take by agreeing to partition small and/or sparsely populated rural areas from a license that the original licensee has no intention to serve, and that the original licensee may not ever need to serve under its existing buildout obligations. Eliminating the ability for the partitioner and the partitionee to collectively share responsibility for meeting the construction requirement for the entire license area eliminates a significant negotiating point for small businesses and rural telephone companies when seeking to partition spectrum from larger entities (such as AT&T and Verizon) since they can no longer help the larger carrier to meet its performance requirements by sharing costs and building less populated areas. Retaining these buildout options for parties to a partitioning or disaggregation transaction is especially appropriate for licensees in the 700 MHz Commercial Services Band. Licensees that acquired their spectrum in Auction No. 73 are subject to rigorous four-year and end-of-term construction benchmarks for their geographic licenses.

spacer Comments in this proceeding are due August 6, 2010 and reply comments are due August 21, 2010. Please let us know if you are interested in participating in the attached comments by Friday afternoon, August 6.

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1 The revised renewal rules will apply to geographic area licensees in the 1.4 GHz Service (part 27, subpart I); 1.6 GHz Service (part 27, subpart J); 24 GHz Service (part 101, subpart G); 39 GHz Service (part 101, subpart B.); 218-219 MHz Service (part 95, subpart F); 220-222 MHz Service (part 90, subpart T); 700 MHz Commercial Services (part 27, subpart F); 700 MHz Guard Band Service (part 27, subpart G); 800 MHz Specialized Mobile Radio Service (part 90, subpart S); 900 MHz Specialized Mobile Radio Service (part 90, subpart S); Advanced Wireless Service (part 27, subpart L); Air-Ground Radiotelephone Service (Commercial Aviation) (part 22, subpart G); Broadband Personal Communications Service (part 24, subpart E); Cellular Radiotelephone Service (part 22, subpart H); Dedicated Short Range Communications Service (part 90, subpart M); Local Multipoint Distribution Service (part 101, subpart L); Multichannel Video Distribution and Data Service (part 101, subpart P); Multilateration Location and Monitoring Service (part 90, subpart M); Multiple Address Systems (EAs) (part 101, subpart O); Narrowband Personal Communications Service (part 24, subpart D); Paging and Radiotelephone Service (part 22, subpart E; part 90, subpart P); Public Coast Stations, including Automated Maritime Telecommunications Systems (part 80, subpart J); and Wireless Communications Service (part 27, subpart D). For the Broadband Radio Service and Educational Broadband Service, the revised renewal requirements shall not apply to any licenses that expire on or before May 1, 2011.

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Before the
Washington, D.C. 20554


In the Matter of

Amendment of Parts 1, 22, 24, 27, 74, 80, 90, 95, and 101 To Establish Uniform License Renewal, Discontinuance of Operation, and Geographic Partitioning and Spectrum Disaggregation Rules and Policies for Certain Wireless Radio Services

Imposition of a Freeze on the Filing of Competing Renewal Applications for Certain Wireless Radio Services and the Processing of Already-Filed Competing Renewal Applications




WT Docket No. 10-112

To: The Commission


spacer The law firm of Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP (“Blooston”), on behalf of its wireless licensee clients (the “Blooston Licensees”), respectfully submits the following comments on the Commission’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Order (“NPRM”) in the above-captioned proceeding regarding the establishment of uniform license renewal, discontinuance of operation and geographic partitioning and spectrum disaggregation rules for various wireless radio services.1 In brief, the Commission should (1) refrain from adopting its proposed compliance disclosure requirement, as this will unnecessarily confound a process that is working well, and is contrary to the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (“the Act”); (2) make any new substantive requirements and standards prospective in nature, since past auction winners acquired their spectrum using a business plan based on then-existing performance requirements; (3) clarify the standards that will be used in evaluating disclosures made in response to the proposed new information requirements, and the consequences of a perceived deficiency; (4) recognize that different requirements are needed for paging carriers, and auction winners that are private, internal use licensees; (5) exempt Part 90 private user licensees from compliance with the new requirements, other than to verify that they are in operation; and (6) take a flexible approach for discontinuance regulations affecting start up operations and paging operations. In support whereof, the following is shown:


spacer The FCC is proposing to modify and to harmonize the license renewal requirements for various Wireless Radio Services. The current rules vary significantly from radio service to radio service. For the Cellular Radiotelephone Service, the FCC’s Part 22 rules establish a two-step comparative hearing process for addressing a timely-filed renewal application and timely-filed mutual exclusive applications. Under these rules, an Administrative Law Judge (or “ALJ”) must conduct a threshold hearing to determine whether a cellular renewal applicant is entitled to a renewal expectancy. If so, and if the renewal applicant is otherwise basically qualified, the license is renewed and any competing applications are denied. If not, then all mutually exclusive applications in the renewal filing group are considered in a full comparative hearing.

spacer For PCS, the Part 24 rules contain virtually no guidance regarding comparative renewal applications, they do not specify how or when competing applications are to be filed, they do not establish two-step hearings, and do not enumerate procedures for evaluating renewal applications or specify what is required in a renewal expectancy exhibit.

spacer For the Part 27 Miscellaneous Wireless Communications Services (WCS) rules, which apply to a number of radio services including AWS and 700 MHz bands, the license renewal provisions are more detailed than Part 24 but contain few specific rules addressing the possibility of competing renewal applications. However, they affirmatively prohibit such filings against renewal applicants in the 700 MHz Commercial Services Band.

spacer Under the Part 90 Commercial Mobile Radio Service (CMRS) rules, the Commission has stated that licensees would be afforded a renewal expectancy and that “[t]he applicable sections of Part 22 governing . . . renewal expectancy will be incorporated into Part 90. For a 220-222 MHz renewal applicant to receive a renewal expectancy, Rule Section 90.743 requires it to provide: (1) a description of its current service in terms of geographic coverage and population served; (2) an explanation of its record of expansion including a timetable for new station construction to meet changes in service demand; (3) a description of investments; (4) copies of any FCC orders finding that the renewal applicant has violated the Act or any FCC rule or policy; and (5) a list of any pending proceedings that relate to any such violation. However, the rules do not specify the procedures for processing competing renewal applications.

spacer The Part 101 rules for Fixed Microwave Services include a number of renewal rules that are similar to those found in Part 27. For example, Section 101.1011(c) requires an LMDS renewal applicant to file detailed information to demonstrate substantial service in a comparative renewal proceeding, but this same information is not required to demonstrate substantial service as a performance requirement.

spacer The Blooston Licensees believe it makes sense for the Commission to eliminate any references to comparative renewal applications with respect to radio services that are licensed by auction, in order to eliminate ambiguity and uncertainty in the Commission’s rules. While the ability to file competing renewal applications once played a significant role in ensuring that spectrum was put to use in the public interest, the existing ability for challengers to file petitions to deny and procedures calling for reauction of licenses that are not renewed arguably serve this purpose even better. Revising the rules in this manner will take away the incentive for challengers to file speculative applications in the hope of coming away with valuable spectrum rights. Comparative renewal proceedings are unnecessary under the existing rules, they are costly for licensees to defend, and they utilize limited FCC staff resources with little assurance of benefit. In contrast, reuaction of the returned spectrum helps to ensure that a portion of the value for this public resource accrues to the US Treasury, and it helps ensure that the spectrum is assigned to a person or entity that is likely to put it to use. However, as discussed below, certain safeguards must be built into the new rules, and certain licensees should be exempt or governed by a modified version of the new rules.

spacer A. Proposed Renewal Showing

spacer For market-based licensees, the FCC is proposing to adopt renewal requirements for numerous Wireless Radio Services that are based on its three-step approach for the renewal of 700 MHz Commercial Services Band licensees:

(1) renewal applicants must file a detailed renewal showing, demonstrating that they are providing service to the public (or, when allowed under the relevant service rules or pursuant to waiver, using the spectrum for private, internal communication), and substantially complying with the Commission’s rules (including any applicable performance requirements) and policies and the Communications Act;

(2) competing renewal applications are prohibited; and

(3) if a license is not renewed, the associated spectrum is returned to the Commission for reassignment

spacer Under the FCC’s proposal, the renewal showing must include a detailed description of the applicant’s provision of service during the entire license period and address:

a. the level and quality of service provided by the applicant (e.g., the population served, the area served, the number of subscribers, the services offered);

b. the date service commenced, whether service was ever interrupted, and the duration of any interruption or outage;

c. the extent to which service is provided to rural areas;

d. the extent to which service is provided to qualifying tribal land as defined in § 1.2110(e)(3)(i) of this chapter; and

e. any other factors associated with the level of service to the public.

For site-based licensees (such as paging and fixed microwave radio services), the FCC is proposing to modify the first part of the market-based approach by requiring affected licensees to certify that they are continuing to operate consistent with their applicable construction notification(s) or authorization(s) (where the filing of construction notifications is not required), and make a certification of regulatory compliance similar to geographic area licensees. See NPRM at para. 34.

spacer B. The Commission Should Not Require Disclosures Regarding Past Compliance Proceedings and Protests

spacer The FCC proposes to require both geographic area and site-based renewal applicants to make a "regulatory compliance demonstration" that the NPRM describes as including the following disclosures:

. . . copies of all FCC orders finding a violation or an apparent violation of the Communications Act or any FCC rule or policy by the licensee, an entity that owns or controls the licensee, an entity that is owned or controlled by the licensee, or an entity that is under common control with the licensee (whether or not such an order relates specifically to the license for which renewal is sought). The disclosure requirement would apply to all orders finding such violations during the license term for which renewal is sought, including orders that are, or could be, the subject of administrative or judicial review.2

Similarly, proposed Rule Section 1.949(e) (“Regulatory Compliance Demonstration”), describes the certification requirement as follows:

An applicant for renewal of an authorization in the Wireless Radio Services identified in paragraphs (c) and (d) of this section must make a Regulatory Compliance Demonstration as a condition of renewal. A Regulatory Compliance Demonstration must include:

(1) A copy of each FCC order and letter ruling, which may or may not have been assigned a delegated authority number, finding a violation of the Communications Act or any FCC rule or policy by the applicant, an entity that owns or controls the applicant, an entity that is owned or controlled by the applicant, an entity that is under common control with the applicant, or an affiliate of the applicant (whether or not such an order or letter ruling relates specifically to the license for which renewal is sought); and

(2) A list of any pending petitions to deny any application filed by the applicant, an entity that owns or controls the applicant, an entity that is owned or controlled by the applicant, an entity that is under common control with the applicant, or an affiliate of the applicant (whether or not the petition to deny relates specifically to the license for which renewal is sought).

spacer As described below, it is respectfully submitted that the Commission should eliminate the proposed compliance certification/disclosure requirement. The certification/disclosure requirement will confound a licensing system that has heretofore worked efficiently, for little substantive gain.

spacer As shown above, the text of the NPRM would appear to require copies of orders finding an "apparent" violation of the Act or the FCC rules, as opposed to only those orders wherein a violation was determined to have actually occurred. The Blooston Licensees believe such requirement would run afoul of Section 504(c) of the Act, which specifies that a notice of apparent liability "shall not be used, in any other proceeding before the Commission, to the prejudice of the person to whom such notice was issued, unless (i) the forfeiture has been paid, or (ii) a court of competent jurisdiction has ordered payment of such forfeiture, and such order has become final." 3

spacer The Blooston licensees are also concerned about the proposed requirement that renewal applicants include a list of any pending petitions to deny filed against the renewal applicant. This requirement would create an unnecessary burden on applicants and the Commission, and could create an incentive for competitors and others to file such pleadings. Many petitions (including informal objections against private radio licensees) have no bearing on whether a licensee is fit to hold its license(s), and can be triggered by concerns about a frequency coordinator’s actions, or perceived potential for interference. Such issues that do not give rise to licensee qualification concerns; and to the extent that an issue is raised which does reflect on a licensee’s character and fitness to hold a license, the Commission should address such issue in the context of the petition proceeding, not in the context of a license renewal application that may not even concern the challenged call sign. Since the FCC presumably intends to use this information in evaluating whether or not a renewal application should be granted, an adverse finding, by definition, would be prejudicial to the applicant and cannot be part of a regulatory compliance showing. The Commission should clarify that no such information will be required. Similarly, the Commission should not require the disclosure of consent decree orders in which the licensee specifically did not admit guilt, but instead agreed to the decree in the interest of settling a disputed violation situation. spacer

spacer The burden that such new reporting requirement would impose on applicants (and the Commission) should not be underestimated. Some licensees hold hundreds or thousands of licenses. Some of the licensed locations will eventually receive FCC violation notices for various minor technical problems. Under the proposed compliance certification/disclosure requirement, all violations that have occurred over a ten-year period, plus any petitions, would have to be included with each application to renew any of the licensee’s call signs. The FCC then will need to review and consider the significance of each of these disclosures, even if unrelated to the license that is up for renewal. Suddenly, a relatively straight-forward renewal application will become a complicated matter requiring the off line of the license renewal application for legal review – over and over as each call sign held by the same licensee comes up for renewal. Again, the Commission will have already had the opportunity, in the appropriate context, to pass judgment on the impact any violation or protest should have on the licensee’s fitness. As the Commission is aware, when a violation is evaluated, the Commission looks at the licensee’s overall compliance record (including other past violations) in determining whether to mitigate or aggravate the fine. See 47 CFR §1.80(b)(4).

spacer a. The Proposed License Renewal Regulatory Compliance Demonstration is Overreaching

spacer As part of the regulatory compliance demonstration proposed in the NPRM, license renewal applicants would be required to submit compliance disclosures with respect to the applicant and any “affiliates”. The term “affiliate of the applicant” would be defined by Section 1.2110(c)(5) of the Commission’s Rules. BloostonLaw believes that the regulatory compliance demonstration is overreaching, inasmuch as it far exceeds the traditional concept of control regulated by Section 310(d) of the Act, and forces the applicant to provide copies of documents that should already be in the Commission’s internal files.

spacer The use of Section 1.2110(c)(5) to define affiliation for purposes of making the regulatory compliance demonstration is overbroad and inappropriate. Rule Section 1.2110(c)(5) was adopted by the FCC in order to limit the conveyance of special governmental benefits (e.g., bid credits and other designated entity benefits), in order to avoid “unjust enrichment”. Here, the proposed requirement is punitive in nature, in that the applicant could be found ineligible for license renewal.

spacer The following example illustrates the issue with the FCC’s proposed definition of affiliation. Under Rule Section 1.2110(c)(5), Company A (a manufacturing company located in Washington, DC) would be presumed to be an affiliate of Company B (a small pizza delivery service in California) simply because the sibling of Company A’s owner is married to the owner of Company B, an unrelated business venture in another state. Thus, if the FCC has issued any findings of non-compliance against Company B, or Company B has been the subject of petitions to deny, those findings and/or petitions would be imputed to Company A under the FCC’s definition of “kindred” affiliation, even though there was no actual relationship or control between the companies. While Rule Section 1.2110(c)(5)(iii)(B) indicates that the presumption could be rebutted, it could only be rebutted by requiring the licensee’s owners to confer with all family members listed under Rule Section 1.2110(c)(5)(iii)(B) each time it has an FCC license up for renewal, and then preparing a detailed showing if necessary. This requirement places an unnecessary burden on the applicant. As a result, the FCC should limit its definition of affiliation to the span of control under Section 310(d) of the Act.

spacer C. The Commission Should Make its Proposed Construction and Service Showing Requirements in the License Renewal Context Prospective in Nature

spacer The FCC has proposed to utilize a three-part license renewal model that was established for the 700 MHz Service in Auction No. 73 for the other auctioned services and certain commercial site-by-site services. Under this model, applicants will be required to demonstrate in their license renewal applications (a) the level and quality of the service provided by the applicant (e.g., population served, the area served, the number of subscribers and services offered); (b) the date service to the public commenced and whether service has ever been interrupted (and if so, the duration of any service interruption or outage); (c) the extent to which service is provided to rural areas; (d) the extent to which services are provided to qualifying tribal lands (as defined by the FCC’s Rules); and (e) any other factors that might be associated with the level of service to the public, including but not limited to factors that are already considered in certain radio services. The Commission has also asked whether it should consider requiring (a) a description of the licensee’s current service in terms of geographic coverage and population served; (b) an explanation of the licensee’s record of expansion (including a timetable for the construction of new stations in order to meet demands for service), (c) a description of investments in the system, (d) a list of addresses for all cell towers and (e) identification of the type of facilities and their construction status. See NPRM at para. 27. Further, the Commission is asking whether it should give consideration to whether (a) the licensee is offering a specialized service or technologically sophisticated service that does not require a high level of coverage in order to be beneficial to customers, (b)the licensee’s operations serve niche markets or focus on populations outside of areas served by other licensees; and (c) the licensee’s operations serve populations with limited access to telecommunications services. Id.

spacer This “renewal” showing will be more comprehensive, and thus more onerous, than the current substantial service showing requirement that is used to meet the FCC’s construction build-out benchmarks for market-area licensees. As a result, while a licensee could be able to satisfy its underlying FCC construction obligation by making a substantial service showing, that very same showing could be insufficient to warrant license renewal, since the FCC has proposed that the license renewal showing require far more detail, as described above.

spacer The Blooston Licensees understand the Commission’s desire to ensure that (a) spectrum is put to the best use possible and (b) spectrum warehousing is minimized. The desire for some amount of additional information is also understandable. However, with respect to existing geographic area licenses, the Commission should not use a proceeding to “harmonize” license renewal procedures as a vehicle to impose new and significant substantive obligations on auction winners. The FCC auctioned those license rights for substantial amounts of money that required most applicants to develop detailed business plans in order to obtain debt financing and/or investors. Indeed, in many cases the applicant’s bidding efforts were gauged to the business plan developed ahead of the auction. The FCC’s proposed renewal rules would make significant changes to the rules of the game, after these licensees have invested millions of dollars (and in some cases as much as hundreds of millions of dollars) in acquiring their license rights and building their systems out. As a result, these proposed obligations, if adopted by the Commission, would be inconsistent with the business cases that were developed to justify the underlying auction purchases and system construction plans. For this reason, the requirement should only apply to auction licenses and new site-based commercial licenses that are not related to existing systems. Otherwise, it will become even harder for market-area licensees to attract capital. Why would lenders or investors put their money at risk in a project that could be subject to significant additional costs at the whim of an administrative agency?

spacer It is well settled that retroactive application of administrative rules and policies is looked upon with disfavor by the Courts. See e.g., Bowen v. Georgetown University Hospital, 488 U.S. 208 (1988) (Retroactivity not favored in law); Yakima Valley Cablevision v. FCC, 794 F.2d 737, 745 (D.C. Cir. 1986) ("Courts have long hesitated to permit retroactive rulemaking and have noted its troubling nature."). In Georgetown University, Justice Scalia stated in his concurring opinion that "A rule that has unreasonable secondary retroactivity — for example altering future regulation in a manner that makes worthless substantial past investment incurred in reliance upon the prior rule — may for that reason be "arbitrary" or "capricious," see 5 U.S.C. 706, and thus invalid. Georgetown University at 220. In reference to such situations, there are to be found in many cases statements to the effect that "[w]here a rule has retroactive effects, it may nonetheless be sustained in spite of such retroactivity if it is reasonable." General Telephone Co. of Southwest v. United States, 449 F.2d 846, 863 (CA5 1971). In McElroy Electronics Corporation v. FCC, 990 F. 2d 1351, _____ (DC Cir 1993), the Court of Appeals noted that retroactive enforcement of a rule is improper if the “ill effect of the retroactive application of the rule outweighs the ‘mischief’ of frustrating the interests the rule promotes.” In this case, there would be significant mischief in frustrating investment expectations regarding fledgling licensees, for the sake of “harmonizing” renewal procedures. This is especially true since there are less restrictive ways to achieve such harmonization, as discussed above.

spacer If the FCC makes its renewal showing applicable to existing licensees, BloostonLaw urges the FCC to make it far less onerous than currently proposed. Adverse economic conditions and changes in technology may render additional investment in existing systems beyond what is required to satisfy minimum construction requirements unfeasible. The FCC can take official notice that the most recent economic downturn resulted in a significant tightening of credit that forced the business community to reevaluate all expenditures, including capital expenditures, and to defer any expense that was not essential. In many cases revenues were reduced and loan commitments rescinded through no fault of the licensee. A certification that a commercial licensee is continuing to provide service and has not otherwise permanently discontinued operation should be sufficient to ensure that service to the public is being provided.

spacer If the Commission were to apply new substantive requirements retroactively, such requirements should only apply to licenses the size of a Major Trading Area (MTA) or larger. Basic Trading Area (BTA) and Cellular Market Area (CMA) licensees must already serve a significant portion of their license area, because the licenses are smaller and most do not contain any large city/population center (especially in the case of CMAs that are Rural Service Areas, or RSAs). In contrast, MTAs, Regional Economic Area Groupings (REAGs) and other large license areas can often be served simply by building out to the major cities and towns in the market area. For many such large licenses, it will never be necessary to build out to rural areas within the market boundary.

spacer D. The Commission Should Clarify How the New Disclosures Will Be Utilized, and What Standards Will Apply to the Renewal Process.

spacer The proposed renewal rules require a significant amount of information not currently required in either the renewal context or in market-area build out showings. As discussed above, the Blooston Licensees believe that the Commission should refrain from imposing compliance disclosure requirements, and should only impose changes in substantive service requirements prospectively. However, as to all of the proposed new disclosure requirements, the NPRM does not explain how the additional information will be used by the Commission, or what the consequences will be if there are any perceived deficiencies. It is respectfully submitted that the Commission must explain what standards will be used to evaluate the reported information, and what weight will be applied to each disclosure. Without such guidance, licensees will face uncertainty as to what may result in a loss of their licenses through the renewal process. Determining what weight should be accorded to factors such as whether a licensee may not have expanded service rapidly enough or invested enough in its license is in part a subjective judgment.

spacer In this regard, while the proposed elimination of competing applications would appear to eliminate the traditional concept of a “renewal expectancy”, it is important for the Commission to establish that a licensee’s investment in its operations will not be entirely lost due to a few missed reports or other factors identified by the NPRM as reportable matters. A licensee providing service to the public in accordance with its license and any build out requirement should be able to retain its license even if its record of compliance and operational history is not perfect. A licensee should lose its license only upon a finding that the licensee has engaged in conduct so egregious that it must be barred from holding any FCC license. In the case of existing licenses, no portion of the license should be lost due to deficiencies in the factors identified in the NPRM, for the reasons discussed above; and in the case of future licenses, consistent with the scheme adopted for Auction No. 73, the licensee should at a minimum be able to keep that portion of its license that it has constructed, with reasonable room for expansion. Otherwise, it will be impossible to attract investment in telecommunications ventures. The Commission should also consider a six to twelve month “cure” period, in which any purported deficiencies in meeting the renewal standards can be corrected by the licensee.

spacer With respect to the Commission’s proposed contents for a market-based license renewal showing, the Blooston Licensees do not believe that the rules should elicit licensees to disclose information about their subscriber counts in their license renewal showings. For many small and mid-sized carriers – especially those that are privately held - subscriber counts are closely guarded confidential information. Any suggestion that subscriber count is indicative of the “level and quality” of a carrier’s service would be prejudicial to those businesses that have chosen to provide service in sparsely populated rural areas, that have chosen to operate “roam only” systems, or that have chosen to serve niche markets. To the extent that the Rules suggest that a carrier’s renewal prospects might be improved by disclosing its subscriber count (even if this is voluntary), failure to include such information might leave the FCC’s staff with a false impression about the licensee’s actual level and quality of service. Affiliation or partnership opportunities may not be available for small carriers that have acquired licenses in rural markets, and the prospects for operating a stand-alone wireless business may be limited. The Blooston Licensees believe that licensees should instead be encouraged to describe the level and quality of their service in their own terms, which will vary from service to service, as well as from situation to situation.

spacer Likewise the Blooston Licensees believe that the renewal showing for market-based licenses should not require licensees to disclose the date on which they commenced service. Many factors — including many factors that are beyond a licensee’s control — may influence a licensee’s ability to initiate service. This is especially the case for small and rural carriers who often do not have the same access to capital markets as larger and publicly traded carriers, and who may be affected more deeply by normal business cycles, larger economic downturns, severe weather, short construction seasons, loss of key employees, and any of a number of other factors. Including this requirement in a renewal showing ignores the realities faced by many small and rural businesses and creates an inherent “sooner is better” bias in the rules that could prejudice the license renewal prospects for these entities and prevent them from pursuing a strategy of building rural areas first (such as a rural telephone company’s wireline service area) instead of building initiating the service in more populated areas, which are much easier to build quickly. As a practical matter, it will impose additional (and unspecific) “soft” buildout and service requirements beyond those that are already included in the Commission’s rules, so a small business can make sure that a vague standard is met. Instead of injecting greater uncertainty into the license renewal process, the Commission should rely on enforcement of its existing performance requirements to provide licensees with the incentives to provide service quickly, lest renewal showings for small business and entrepreneurs become detailed “apology letters” explaining why a particular licensee was unable to initiate its service sooner, and FCC staff be tempted to make a negative finding bearing on license renewal if a carrier had not initiated its service before some arbitrary date.

spacer The Blooston Licensees agree with the FCC that it is in the public interest for market area license renewal showings to include detailed descriptions of the extent to which service is provided to rural areas and the extent to which service is provided to qualifying tribal land. Licensees should also be encouraged to explain any other factors that they believe relevant to evaluating their particular level of service to the public.

spacer E. The FCC Should Create Special License Renewal, Construction and Discontinuance Rules for Geographic Area Licenses that are Utilized for Private Internal Purposes

spacer The FCC can take official notice that local governmental entities, automobile clubs and other licensees have applied to utilize auction spectrum for private internal purposes in order to meet their internal communications needs. Where necessary, the FCC has routinely granted rule waivers in order to grant Form 601 long-form applications which requested authority to provide communications on a private, internal basis. Because these facilities are being utilized to provide private, internal communications, the FCC’s proposed requirements, which are based upon demonstrations of service to the public, are inappropriate.

spacer When licenses are obtained for internal operations, the FCC’s expectation should be that the licensee will make the necessary investment to utilize and maintain those licenses to meet its private internal communications needs. Relying on a percentage of population coverage or the FCC’s substantial service showing guidelines is unrealistic, since these licensees are not providing services to the public. Instead, it must be realized that business conditions will change from time-to-time that require the closing of certain plants and/or manufacturing facilities and the opening of others, many times in different locations. As a result, the test for geographic area licenses that are being used for private, internal operations, should be the same as that applied to site-based private radio licenses authorized under Part 90 of the FCC’s Rules. In this way, licensees will have the maximum flexibility to utilize these facilities in a manner that meets their internal communications needs without being required to make unnecessary expenditures.

spacer With respect to the paging frequencies authorized under Part 22 of the Commission’s Rules, the Commission can take official notice that Rule Section 22.7 was amended to lift the common carrier eligibility requirement and permit “any entity” to be eligible to hold a Part 22 authorization. As a result, construction coverage requirements of Rule Section 22.503(k)(2), which were adopted prior to the amendment of Rule Section 22.7, should not apply to private internal communications, where the object of the communications is to meet the licensee’s internal communications needs rather than providing commercial communications service to the public. Additionally, the Blooston Licensees believes that any geographic area license that has been authorized by the Commission for private internal communications should be treated as a private radio license, meaning that (a) the licensee must complete construction of its system within the technical rules within the time specified for that spectrum; (b) that the licensee be allowed to discontinue operation for up to 1 year, before the license is deemed to have permanently discontinued operation — provided, however, that the one-year period does not begin to run so long as at least one facility remains in operation within the licensed geographic market area and (c) that at the time of license renewal, the licensee is merely required to certify that facilities are constructed under the license and that those facilities have not permanently discontinued operation.

F. Site-Based License Renewals Require a Different Approach

spacer Just as market-based licenses used for private internal purposes require special consideration, so too do site-based licenses. With respect to renewal showings for site-based licenses, the Blooston Licensees support the FCC’s proposal to require licensees to certify that they are continuing to operate consistent with their applicable construction notification(s) or authorization(s), with certain clarifications. First, the Blooston Licensees agree with the tenor of the NPRM that the “substantial service” renewal standard is not really applicable to site-based licensees. Since site-based licenses allow little room for expansion or modification of service areas or service types without the grant of modification applications, the technical parameters displayed on the license largely define the nature of the operation.

spacer There are two basic types of site-based licensees at this juncture: Part 90 private radio licensees that are using their radio systems internally, and the last of the commercial paging and SMR-type operations. As discussed below, the Commission’s revised renewal regulations should recognize that Part 90 private radio operations are primarily dictated by the internal communications needs of the licensee, and therefore a simple certification that the station is operating consistent with the applicable authorization is all that is necessary; and for commercial paging operations, the Commission’s renewal inquiry should also be limited, in recognition of the historic changes that are still unfolding for the paging industry.

spacer a. The Commission Should Exclude the All Part 80, 90 and 101 Private Radio Services from the Renewal Certification Showings

spacer Under the Commission’s proposal, the Public Safety Pool frequencies are excluded from the FCC’s license renewal proposal that would require applicants to “certify that they are continuing o operate consistent with the applicable filed construction notification(s) (NT) or most recent authorization(s) (when no NT is required under the Commission’s Rules” and to make the required substantial regulatory compliance demonstration.5 The Blooston Licensees urge the Commission to exclude the Part 80, 90 and 101 private radio services from these requirements for the very same reasons that the FCC has chosen to exempt the public safety services. For most private user licensees, the additional reporting requirements and paperwork burdens would be onerous and would make what is now a fairly simple license renewal process unduly complex and burdensome; particularly for smaller companies that do not have the sophistication to understand all of the Commission’s processes. The Blooston Licensees note that private radio licensees are exempt from providing the Commission with the detailed ownership information that is collected from commercial wireless licensees. As a result, these licensees have never been required to undertake developing their ownership structure in accordance with the detail required under Section 1.2110(c)(5) of the Commission’s Rules, and should not be since they are not regulated as commercial service providers. As the Commission should well be aware, spectrum in these services is utilized for internal communications as an adjunct to the licensee’s core business activities. Simply put, radio is a tool for these entities, but they are not in the business of providing radio service. Thus, they are not as immersed in FCC regulations as commercial licensees.

spacer The Blooston Licensees understand that the Commission maintains enforcement records and that many of these records include the offender’s FRN. Presumably, the Commission has indexed its records by FRN and name, and thus, should be in a position to understand whether or not the applicant has an enforcement history with the Commission. Unlike commercial carriers, in the private radio arena, the vast majority of larger companies decentralize their radio operations to the local level. Additionally, it is not uncommon for there to be high turn-over or changed responsibilities. As a result, current internal licensing personnel may not be aware of adverse regulatory compliance findings by the Commission if they were not directly involved (or quite frankly, may not remember them after a period of years). Because the Commission’s enforcement records include the offender’s FRN, the Commission has sufficient information with respect to each licensee to determine whether their history of regulatory compliance is so horrific as to justify being classified as ineligible to hold an FCC radio license.

spacer spacer b. Paging Services Require Special Consideration

spacer The Blooston Law Firm represents numerous small and medium sized paging companies which primarily serve small to medium and rural markets. These paging services have become more important to subscribers who require paging services as the larger, national carriers have pulled out of less profitable markets. Typical paging customers include public safety entities, such as police, fire and EMS agencies as well as medical professionals, hospitals and specialized industrial users where other means of communications may not be practicable.

spacer The FCC can take official notice that the paging and messaging services authorized under Parts 22 and Part 90 of the FCC’s Rules are in decline. As indicated in the FCC’s FY2010 Regulatory Fee Order, “[s]ince 1997, the number of paging subscribers has declined [84 percent], from 40.8 million to 6.5 million, and there does not appear to be any sign of recovery to the subscriber levels of 1997-1999.” See Assessment and Collection of Regulatory Fees for Fiscal Year 2010, Report and Order, MD Docket 10-87 (Rel. July 9, 2010), para. 22, fn.53. As a result of this precipitous decline in subscriber base, the FCC has continued to maintain messaging regulatory fees at 2003 levels. Id. at para 24. Because of these conditions, paging carriers have been forced to eliminate unprofitable transmitters and focus on areas where their remaining subscribers require service. The FCC cannot expect paging carriers to add transmitters merely for the sake of expanding service where there is not a strong business case to do so. Likewise, if it is no longer cost effective for paging carriers to maintain certain paging sites, they should be free to eliminate unprofitable transmitter locations without fear of retribution from the FCC for what would otherwise be a sound business decision. Further, those paging carriers with site-based licenses authorized pursuant to Part 22 of the FCC’s Rules may not be in a position to relocate transmitters or expand services due to constraints imposed by the FCC’s paging order which imposed a permanent freeze on applications for new site-by-site paging facilities. See [INSERT CITE] Under the Paging Order, the FCC limited modifications of site-by-site paging authorizations to the carrier’s composite interference contour. As a result, Part 22 site-by-site licensees are not free to expand their systems in order to meet subscriber demand if the proposed site would be outside the composite service area established by the Paging Order, and in fact, may be forced to decommission unprofitable paging transmitters if there is little or no demand for service in those areas. Because of this and other limitations, the Blooston Licensees urge the FCC to require a simple certification as part of the license renewal application that the paging carriers are utilizing their licenses to provide paging services to the public. Such approach would recognize that the paging industry is in a decline that will require a reduction of service, but that the remaining six million paging customers are overwhelmingly engaged in safety/health related activities.


spacer The Blooston Licensees believe the Commission should adopt a uniform definition for “permanent discontinuance of operation” as 12 consecutive months during which a licensee does not operate or, for CMRS providers, does not serve at least one subscriber that is not affiliated with, controlled by, or related to the providing carrier. Adoption of a uniform rule will eliminate uncertainty that currently exists due to the lack of an existing definition for “permanent discontinuance” under Parts 24 and 27 of the Commission’s Rules, and it will ensure that similarly situated licensees are afforded comparable regulatory treatment.

Setting the discontinuance period for CMRS operations at 12 consecutive months (as opposed to 180 consecutive days) makes sense because of the additional time that small and rural carriers often need to implement technology upgrades, due to shortened construction seasons in remote areas prone to severe weather, and due to delays that small companies often face when seeking network financing. Unlike larger carriers that have the spectrum, funding and manpower necessary to manage operations of “overlay” networks, most small and rural CMRS carriers lack these resources and would benefit from additional time to suspend their operations (if necessary), as well as the availability of in-market voice and data roaming services, to complete this process. The Commission does not need to worry that one year is too long a discontinuance period because carriers already have a significant financial incentive to put their spectrum to use and to make any discontinuance of operations as short as possible. A one-year discontinuance period for CMRS operations would also be consistent with the FCC’s proposed 365-day permanent discontinuance rule for radio services regulated under Parts 90 and 101 of the Commission’s Rules.

spacer With respect to the requirement that licensees notify the FCC of a permanent discontinuance, the Blooston Licensees believe that the Commission should modify its proposed 10-day deadline for requesting license cancellation after a permanent discontinuance, to become a 30-day deadline. The Blooston Licensees agree with the Commission that all licensees should also have the ability to file a request for a longer discontinuance period for good cause, and that such an extension request must be filed at least 30 days before the end of the discontinuance period.

spacer A. The Commission Should Accept the Offering of Roaming Service to the Public as Adequate to Prevent Discontinuance of Operation

spacer Some market-based licensees have built their business case on providing service to roamers, especially when they first complete construction. This allows the carrier to minimize operating expenses until revenues have risen to the level to support significant marketing and customer care efforts. The Commission should recognize that such roaming arrangements constitute a valuable service to the public, and should prevent a discontinuance of operation.

spacer B. The Commission’s Permanent Discontinuance Rules for the Part 22 Messaging Services Should Mirror those Proposed for the Part 90 Paging Services

spacer For the Part 90 paging services, the FCC has proposed to allow a one-year period for permanent discontinuance. Id. at para 68. This is because the Commission has noted that “[s]ome Part 90 services are used for seasonal operations such as ski resort operations or beach patrols.” Id. Since these types of operations may be conducted for less than six months (180 days) out of the calendar year, the Commission concluded that it should retain the one-year discontinuance of operation rule for the Part 90 services.6 The logic expressed by the Commission for the Part 90 CMRS operations is also applicable to Part 22 CMRS operations, and in particular certain paging and IMTS operations. Certain paging and IMTS systems are operated on a seasonal basis, associated with winter-only or summer-only activities, or event. It is well known that many resort areas shut down during the off seasons and are only open during the tourist seasons, which may last for only four to five months. Additionally, paging activities that are associated with ranching and farming are likewise seasonal in nature, and depending upon weather conditions, may be for less than six months out of the year. For these reasons, the Blooston Licensees urge the Commission to apply the proposed service discontinuance standard for Part 90 CMRS facilities to the Part 22 Paging and Radiotelephone Service.


spacer The FCC first adopted geographic partitioning and spectrum disaggregation rules for Broadband PCS in 1996. At the time, the Commission stated its goals were to: “(1) facilitate the efficient use of spectrum by providing licensees with the flexibility to make offerings directly responsive to market demands for particular types of service; (2) increase competition by allowing market entry by new entrants; and (3) expedite the provision of service to areas that otherwise may not receive broadband PCS service in the near term.”7 The Commission subsequently adopted partitioning and disaggregation rules similar to the PCS rules for the 800 MHz and 900 MHz Specialized Mobile Radio (SMR) Services, 39 GHz Service, Wireless Communications Service (WCS), 220-222 MHz Service, and Cellular Radiotelephone Service. The FCC now seeks to modify its partitioning and disaggregation rules, due to concerns that the current rules enable parties to avoid timely construction.

spacer While the Blooston Licensees agree that the Commission’s rules should not enable parties to avoid timely construction, they urge the FCC not to eliminate the “partitioner only” construction option for licensees of wireless radio services that currently have this option. If it is concerned about a perceived problem or “loophole” in Rule Section 27.15(d)(1)(i) – which applies to applies to licensees in the 1.4 GHz, 1.6 GHz, 2.3 GHz, and certain 700 MHz bands (i.e., Lower 700 MHz Band licenses that were available for bidding in Auctions No. 44 and 49), it should address the perceived problem directly and clarify that substantial service buildout requirements apply to all wireless radio services at the time of license renewal, unless other service-specific requirements are applicable. The “partitioner only” construction option is extremely valuable because it allows small and rural carriers and entrepreneurs to take risks that they might not otherwise take by agreeing to partition small and/or sparsely populated rural areas from a license that the original licensee has no intention to serve, and that the original licensee may not ever need to serve under its existing buildout obligations. Imposing an obligation for both the partitioner and partitionee to independently satisfy the service-specific construction obligations (i.e., requiring the partitionee to meet intermediate construction benchmarks in addition to a substantial service obligation at renewal) significantly reduces the flexibility that parties currently have to craft partitioning arrangements to fit unique situations. Small businesses, rural carriers and entrepreneurs are often the only service providers that are willing and able to serve niche markets and unserved/underserved areas. It would counterintuitive and contrary to many of the FCC’s policy goals, as well as provisions of the Communications Act and the National Broadband Plan that seek to promote the ability for small businesses to compete in the provision of advanced wireless services, for the FCC to force partitionees in all cases to assume service-specific performance obligations that they may only later find are impossible for them to meet.

spacer The same arguments apply to the partitioning option that currently exists for numerous radio services, including many of the 700 MHz channel blocks, for the partitioner and the partitionee to collectively share responsibility for meeting the construction requirement for the entire license area. Eliminating this option effectively eliminates a significant negotiating point for small businesses and rural telephone companies when seeking to partition spectrum from larger entities (such as AT&T and Verizon) and offering to help the larger carrier by sharing costs to meet the stricter performance requirements.

spacer Rural telephone companies often serve vast geographic areas where population densities are extremely low. Examples of these low population densities are shown in Attachment A, demonstrating that vast areas in North and South Dakota fall well below the 100 person per square mile definition of “rural” contained in the Commission’s rules.

spacer If it is deemed necessary to limit the partitioning/disaggregation rule as proposed, the Commission should at least preserve its partitioner-only and collective construction options for partitioning transactions involving rural areas. At the same time, it should amend its rules to provide a “substantial service” option for all partitionees of rural areas (using the FCC’s definition of “rural” as counties having a population density of 100 persons per square mile or less) and make this available for all wireless services. Such regulatory flexibility is appropriate because it recognizes the economic challenges faced by carriers that have chosen to serve rural areas (as defined in the Rural Spectrum Order) and because the relief is tailored to fit only those businesses that have risen to accept those challenges.


Based on the foregoing, the Commission should modify its proposed changes to the renewal, discontinuance and partitioning/disaggregationrules, as described above.

By: Respectfully submitted,

Harold Mordkofsky
John A. Prendergast
D. Cary Mitchell
Richard D. Rubino
Their Attorneys

Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens,
Duffy & Prendergast, LLP
2120 L Street, NW, Suite 300
Washington, DC 20037
Tel. (202) 659-0830

Dated: August 6, 2010

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1 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Order, WT Docket No. 10-112, FCC 10-86, rel. May 25, 2010 (__ FR ___).

2 NPR at ¶ 38.

3 47 U.S.C. § 504(c).

4 The Commission can take official notice that it has authorized the licensing of geographic area licenses for private, internal communications. Some of these authorizations have occurred in the Paging and Radiotelephone Service while others have been in the 900 MHz MAS Service, to name a few. Private land mobile licensees have acquired these licenses directly from the Commission during the actual auction event or in the secondary market because no other spectrum was available to meet their private internal communications needs. As a result, the Commission should not be surprised that in some cases the best use of spectrum (especially for that purchased at auction) was private internal communications. The Commission’s flexible use doctrine for the auctions is based upon allowing the market place determine the best use of the spectrum so long as the use is consistent with the technical service rules.

5 See NPRM at 16. The FCC notes further that it is possible that a site-based licensee will have been granted a license modification for which the construction deadline will not have past until after the license renewal deadline. In that circumstance, the FCC proposes that the licensee be able to include the authorized, but not yet constructed facilities within the scope of the license renewal. Id. at fn 92.

6 The Commission also proposes that Part 90 CMRS operations be required to provide service to at least one unaffiliated subscriber during the one-year period. See Id.

7 Geographic Partitioning and Spectrum Disaggregation by Commercial Mobile Radio Service Licensees, WT Docket No. 96-148, Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, 11 FCC Rcd 21831 ¶ 1 (1996) (CMRS Partitioning and Disaggregation Order).

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Attachment A spacer

Population Density of South Dakota Counties


Name STATE 2000 Census Population Density (POPs/SqMi)
Aurora SD 3,058 4.32
Beadle SD 17,023 13.52
Bennett SD 3,574 3.02
Bon Homme SD 7,260 12.89
Brookings SD 28,220 35.52
Brown SD 35,460 20.70
Brule SD 5,364 6.55
Buffalo SD 2,032 4.32
Butte SD 9,094 4.04
Campbell SD 1,782 2.42
Charles Mix SD 9,350 8.52
Clark SD 4,143 4.32
Clay SD 13,537 32.89
Codington SD 25,897 37.66
Corson SD 4,181 1.69
Custer SD 7,275 4.67
Davison SD 18,741 43.04
Day SD 6,267 6.09
Deuel SD 4,498 7.21
Dewey SD 5,972 2.59
Douglas SD 3,458 7.98
Edmunds SD 4,367 3.81
Fall River SD 7,453 4.28
Faulk SD 2,640 2.64
Grant SD 7,847 11.50
Gregory SD 4,792 4.72
Haakon SD 2,196 1.21
Hamlin SD 5,540 10.93
Hand SD 3,741 2.60
Hanson SD 3,139 7.22
Harding SD 1,353 0.51
Hughes SD 16,481 22.24
Hutchinson SD 8,075 9.93
Name STATE 2000 Census Population Density (POPs/SqMi)
Hyde SD 1,671 1.94
Jackson SD 2,930 1.57
Jerauld SD 2,295 4.33
Jones SD 1,193 1.23
Kingsbury SD 5,815 6.94
Lake SD 1,276 20.02
Lawrence SD 21,802 27.25
Lincoln SD 24,131 41.74
Lyman SD 3,895 2.38
Marshall SD 4,576 5.46
McCook SD 5,832 10.15
McPherson SD 2,904 2.55
Meade SD 24,253 6.99
Mellette SD 2,083 1.59
Miner SD 2,884 5.06
Minnehaha SD 148,281 183.14
Moody SD 6,595 12.69
Pennington SD 88,565 31.90
Perkins SD 3,363 1.17
Potter SD 2,693 3.11
Roberts SD 10,016 9.09
Sanborn SD 2,675 4.70
Shannon SD 12,466 5.95
Spink SD 7,454 4.96
Stanley SD 2,772 1.92
Sully SD 1,556 1.55
Todd SD 9,050 6.52
Tripp SD 6,430 3.99
Turner SD 8,849 14.35
Union SD 12,584 27.33
Walworth SD 5,974 8.44
Yankton SD 21,652 41.51
Ziebach SD 2,519 1.28

Average population density of SD’s sixty-six counties is 12.85 persons/square mile. The FCC defines “rural areas” as counties having a population density of less than 100 persons/square mile. By this measure, all but one of sixty-six counties in the State (Minnehaha County) qualifies as a rural area.

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Attachment B spacer

Population Density of North Dakota Counties


County Name 2000 Census Land Area Square Miles Pop Density
Adams 2,593 987.9135 2.62
Barnes 11,775 1491.647 7.89
Benson 6,964 1380.6 5.04
Billings 888 1151.41 0.77
Bottineau 7,149 1668.586 4.28
Bowman 3,242 1162.047 2.79
Burke 2,242 1103.529 2.03
Burleigh 69,416 1633.089 42.51
Cass 123,138 1765.229 69.76
Cavalier 4,831 1488.459 3.25
Dickey 5,757 1131 5.09
Divide 2,283 1259.529 1.81
Dunn 3,600 2009.599 1.79
Eddy 2,757 630.1185 4.38
Emmons 4,331 1509.883 2.87
Foster 3,759 635.2005 5.92
Golden Valley 1,924 1001.99 1.92
Grand Forks 66,109 1437.806 45.98
Grant 2,841 1659.462 1.71
Griggs 2,754 708.5013 3.89
Hettinger 2,715 1132.252 2.40
Kidder 2,753 1350.786 2.04
LaMoure 4,701 1147.177 4.10
Logan 2,308 992.6411 2.33
McHenry 5,987 1874.091 3.19
McIntosh 3,390 975.194 3.48
McKenzie 5,737 2742.018 2.09
County Name 2000 Census Land Area Square Miles Pop Density
McLean 9,311 2109.955 4.41
Mercer 8,644 1045.489 8.27
Morton 25,303 1926.268 13.14
Mountrail 6,631 1823.933 3.64
Nelson 3,715 981.6215 3.78
Oliver 2,065 723.5216 2.85
Pembina 8,585 1118.752 7.67
Pierce 4,675 1017.818 4.59
Ramsey 12,066 1184.846 10.18
Ransom 5,890 862.7471 6.83
Renville 2,610 874.7658 2.98
Richland 17,998 1436.712 12.53
Rolette 13,674 902.4538 15.15
Sargent 4,366 858.7536 5.08
Sheridan 1,710 971.7514 1.76
Sioux 4,044 1094.12 3.70
Slope 767 1217.94 0.63
Stark 22,636 1338.162 16.92
Steele 2,258 712.3614 3.17
Stutsman 21,908 2221.403 9.86
Towner 2,876 1024.552 2.81
Traill 8,477 861.8875 9.84
Walsh 12,389 1281.742 9.67
Ward 58,795 2012.884 29.21
Wells 5,102 1271.277 4.01
Williams 19,761 2070.457 9.54


Average population density of ND fifty-three counties is 12.85 persons/square mile. The FCC defines “rural areas” as counties having a population density of less than 100 persons/square mile.

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Service List

Julius Genachowski, Chairman
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-B201
Washington, DC 20554
Bruce Gottlieb
Legal Advisor to Chairman Genachowski
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-B201
Washington, DC 20554
Michael J. Copps, Commissioner
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-B115
Washington, DC 20554
Rick Chessen
Legal Advisor to Commissioner Copps
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-B115
Washington, DC 20554
Robert M. McDowell, Commissioner
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-C302
Washington, DC 20554
Angela Giancarlo
Legal Advisor to Commissioner McDowell
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-C302
Washington, DC 20554
Mignon Clyburn, Commissioner
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-A302
Washington, DC 20554
Renee Roland Crittendon
Legal Advisor to Commissioner Clyburn
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-A302
Washington, DC 20554
Meredith Attwell Baker, Commissioner
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-A204
Washington, DC 20554
Erin McGrath
Legal Advisor to Commissioner Baker
445 12th Street SW, Room 8-A204
Washington, DC 20554
Marlene H. Dortch
Office of the Secretary
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street, S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20554.
Best Copy and Printing, Inc. (BCPI)
Portals II
445 12th Street, S.W., Room CY-B402,
Washington, D.C. 20554


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Source: Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy and Prendergast, LLP For additional information, contact Hal Mordkofsky at 202-828-5520 or

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CVC Paging

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  • January 11, 1997—Telstar 401 suffers a short in the satellite circuitry—TOTAL LOSS May 19, 1998—Galaxy 4 control processor causes loss of fixed orbit—TOTAL LOSS September 19, 2003—Telstar 4 suffers loss of its primary power bus—TOTAL LOSS March 17, 2004—PAS-6 suffers loss of power—TOTAL LOSS
  • January 14, 2005—Intelsat 804 suffers electrical power system anomaly—TOTAL LOSS


Allow us to uplink your paging data to two separate satellites for complete redundancy! CVC owns and operates two separate earth stations and specializes in uplink services for paging carriers. Join our list of satisfied uplink customers.

  • Each earth station features hot standby redundancy UPS and Generator back-up Redundant TNPP Gateways On shelf spares for all critical components
  • 24/7 staffing and support

cvc paging cvc antennas For inquires please call or e-mail Stephan Suker at 800-696-6474 or left arrow

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CVC Paging

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Sacramento area CHP, police plan crackdown on cell phone use, texting while driving

By Bill Lindelof
August 6, 2010

Police and the California Highway Patrol in the Sacramento area are dedicating an up-coming nine-day span to "zero tolerance' of cell phone use or texting while driving.

Anyone caught talking or texting on a cell phone that is not a hands free device between Tuesday and Aug. 18 will be given a citation that carries a fine of up to $100, according to the CHP.
The CHP indicated that such enforcements may become an annual effort.

Cell phones are the leading cause of inattentive driver crashes in the state, the CHP said.

Since the start of the hands-free law two years ago more than 1,200 collisions have cell phones as a contributing factor.

Those collisions have resulted in 16 fatalities and 850 people injured.

Among the agencies participating in the crackdown are: the CHP and officers in the Sacramento, Elk Grove, West Sacramento, Roseville, Galt and Rancho Cordova police departments.

The July 1, 2008 law prohibits the use of handheld cell phones by all drivers. In addition, it forbids drivers under the age of 18 from using both handheld and hands free phones. Six months later, a ban on text messaging by drivers was put in place.

CHP officers have issued more than 244,000 citations for violation of the cell phone law.

Cell phone violations carry a minimum fine of $20 for the first offense and $50 for the second. When court costs and other fees are added, the total can exceed $100 for a first offense, the CHP said.

Source: The Sacramento Bee

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WiPath Communications

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wipath header

Intelligent Solutions for Paging & Wireless Data

WiPath manufactures a wide range of highly unique and innovative hardware and software solutions in paging and mobile data for:

  • Emergency Mass Alert & Messaging Emergency Services Communications Utilities Job Management Telemetry and Remote Switching Fire House Automation
  • Load Shedding and Electrical Services Control

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  • FLEX & POCSAG Built-in POCSAG encoder Huge capcode capacity Parallel, 2 serial ports, 4 relays
  • Message & system monitoring

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  • Variety of sizes Indoor/outdoor
  • Integrated paging receiver

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  • Highly programmable, off-air decoders Message Logging & remote control Multiple I/O combinations and capabilities
  • Network monitoring and alarm reporting

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  • Emergency Mass Alerting Remote telemetry switching & control Fire station automation PC interfacing and message management Paging software and customized solutions Message interception, filtering, redirection, printing & logging Cross band repeating, paging coverage infill, store and forward
  • Alarm interfaces, satellite linking, IP transmitters, on-site systems

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Mobile Data Terminals & Two Way Wireless  Solutions

mobile data terminal

radio interface

  • Fleet tracking, messaging, job processing, and field service management Automatic vehicle location (AVL), GPS
  • CDMA, GPRS, ReFLEX, conventional, and trunked radio interfaces

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WiPath Communications LLC
4845 Dumbbarton Court
Cumming, GA 30040
4845 Dumbbarton Court
Cumming, GA 30040
Web site: left arrow CLICK
E-mail: left arrow CLICK
Phone: 770-844-6218
Fax: 770-844-6574
WiPath Communications

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Preferred Wireless

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preferred logo

Terminals & Controllers:
2 GL3100 RF Director
6 Zetron Model 66 Controllers
3 Glenayre GLS2164 Satellite Receivers
1 GL3000L Complete w/Spares
Link Transmitters:
5 Glenayre GL C2100 Link Repeaters
1 Glenayre QT6994, 150W, 900 MHz Link TX
2 Glenayre QT4201, 25W Midband Link TX
1 Glenayre QT-6201, 100W Midband Link TX
3 Motorola 10W, 900 MHz Link TX (C35JZB6106)
2 Motorola 30W, Midband Link TX (C42JZB6106AC)
VHF Paging Transmitters
7 Motorola Nucleus 125W, NAC
1 Motorola VHF PURC-5000 125W, ACB or TRC
8 Glenayre GLT8411, 250W, VHF TX
UHF Paging Transmitters:
24 Glenayre UHF GLT5340, 125W, DSP Exciter
3 Motorola PURC-5000 110W, TRC or ACB
3 Motorola PURC-5000 225W, ACB
900 MHz Paging Transmitters:
3 Glenayre GLT 8600, 500W
15 Glenayre GLT-8500, 250W, C2000, w/ or w/o I20
50 Glenayre GLT-8500 DSP Exciters
50 Glenayre GLT-8500 PAs
50 Glenayre GLT-8500 Power Supplies
Miscellaneous Equipment:
2 Glenayre Hot Standby Panels—Old Style
2 Glenayre Hot Standby Panels—New Style
1 Lengren Copper Screen Room, 6X9'
25 Hennessy Outdoor Wall-Mount Enclosures, 24"x30"x12" deep
3 Chatsworth Aluminum Racks

left arrow CLICK HERE

Too Much To List • Call or E-Mail
Preferred Wireless
Rick McMichael
left arrow CLICK HERE
left arrow OR HERE

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Preferred Wireless

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EastWest Communications Inc.

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Media 1® live
by EastWest Communications Inc.

Real-time response to live events

spacer The audience may attend or view/listen to an event nationwide and respond in real time without requiring a computer — even respond while attending an event.

spacer Participate in sporting events, concerts, training programs or other programs to allow the producers to change the program based on audience participation.

Ed Lyda
P.O. Box 8488
The Woodlands, Texas 77387
Cell: 832-928-9538


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EastWest Communications Inc.

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Teens ditch e-mail for texting and Facebook

But they may go back to e-mail when they get jobs and families

By Samantha Murphy
updated 8/5/2010 8:06:59 PM ET

Earlier this week, Nielsen Co. released a report revealing how Americans spend their time online has changed dramatically over the past 12 months. As people spend more time on social networking sites such as Facebook, time spent e-mailing was down 28 percent and instant messaging dropped 15 percent.

This news has industry executives speculating how the trend could affect how teenagers who have grown up texting and using social networking sites will communicate with each other in the future.

Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg said last month during a conference that "e-mail is probably going away." Although this claim received some backlash online, there is indeed evidence that some consumers are finding alternative ways to stay in touch with their friends.

"E-mail isn't necessarily going to go away all together, especially since some of us still write letters once in awhile," said John Barrett, the director of research for market research firm Parks Associated, which specializes in consumer technology trends.

"Even though communication habits change, they all have their proper use and give us options to choose from. We are, however, seeing a large shift toward communicating through Facebook and less with e-mail."

Teenagers today consider e-mail to be a "grown-up medium," and not ideal for day-to-day communication with their peers, according to a recent study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project and the University of Michigan.

It's no secret that teens love to text. In fact, half send 50 or more text messages a day — or 1,500 texts a month — and one in three send more than 100 texts a day, or more than 3,000 texts a month, the study found, which involved a national survey of 800 teens and nine focus groups in four U.S. cities. But as these quick and casual messages dominate how they communicate, e-mail has taken a back seat — with teens citing the platform as a "formal" and "grown-up" way to be in touch with adults.

Only 11% of teens use e-mail to communicate with friends each day, according to the Pew report. "E-mail doesn't support real-time, flexible contact with others," Scott Campbell, co-author of the Pew report, told TechNewsDaily. "You have to log in and also be online. Teens carry their phones with them anywhere and they can text their friends without stopping everything to respond. Teens do e-mail, but not as much as they communicate in other ways."

Campbell, who is an assistant professor of communication studies at University of Michigan, believes that once teens go to college and begin networking and job searching, e-mail will become a more important way for them to communicate.

"Many teens consider e-mail to be a more adult way of communicating," he continued. "They aren't in the stage of their lives when e-mail serves a real purpose of staying in touch with people."

Texting will continue to play a heavy role in their lives until their mid-20s, Campbell said. As they begin to settle down "and start new families of their own, they will rely less on their peers for a constant stream of communication through texts," he said. "They won't grow out of texting, but they will likely grow out of sending an enormous amount of them each day."

Barrett agrees: "It will be interesting to see if teens start utilizing their personal e-mail addresses more once they graduate from college and begin frequently using their work accounts," he said. "There could be a small shift in professional communication as the younger demographic takes over, but you won't see corporate executives using social networking as their main way of communicating."

E-mail is not the only medium that has taken a hit from the expansion of text messaging and social networking.

"Teenagers are now overlooking the landline phone," Campbell said. "Texting or going on Facebook via mobile devices allows teens to stay in touch with their friends anytime, anywhere. Landline phones confine teens to a certain space, and this is inconvenient for them."

Teens also enjoy manipulating language and abbreviating words through texts and Facebook posts.

"This is a way for them to express themselves and be creative," Campbell said. "Since they believe e-mail is a more formal platform, it doesn't meet their needs right now. However, this could change as they get older."


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Easy Solutions

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easy solutions

Easy Solutions provides cost effective computer and wireless solutions at affordable prices. We can help in most any situation with your communications systems. We have many years of experience and a vast network of resources to support the industry, your system and an ever changing completive landscape.

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Easy Solutions
3220 San Simeon Way
Plano, Texas 75023

Vaughan Bowden
Telephone: 972-898-1119
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Easy Solutions

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Hark Technologies

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Wireless Communication Solutions

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USB Paging Encoder

paging encoder

  • Single channel up to eight zones
  • Connects to Linux computer via USB
  • Programmable timeouts and batch sizes
  • Supports 2-tone, 5/6-tone, POCSAG 512/1200/2400, GOLAY
  • Supports Tone Only, Voice, Numeric, and Alphanumeric
  • PURC or direct connect
  • Pictured version mounts in 5.25" drive bay
  • Other mounting options available
  • Available as a daughter board for our embedded Internet Paging Terminal (IPT)

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Paging Data Receiver (PDR)


  • Frequency agile - only one receiver to stock
  • USB or RS-232 interface
  • Two contact closures
  • End-user programmable w/o requiring special hardware
  • 16 capcodes
  • Eight contact closure version also available
  • Product customization available

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Other products

  • Please see our web site for other products including Internet Messaging Gateways, Unified Messaging Servers, test equipment, and Paging Terminals.
Hark Technologies
717 Old Trolley Rd Ste 6 #163
Summerville, SC 29485
Tel: 843-821-6888
Fax: 843-821-6894
E-mail: left arrow CLICK HERE

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Hark Technologies

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UCOM Paging

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Satellite Uplink
As Low As

  • Data input speeds up to 38.4 Kbps Dial-in modem access for Admin Extremely reliable & secure
  • Hot standby up link components

Knowledgeable Tech Support 24/7

Contact Alan Carle Now!
1-888-854-2697 x272

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UCOM Paging

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Saudi BlackBerry ban inconclusive

2010-08-06 19:41

Riyadh — The status of Saudi Arabia's ban on key BlackBerry services remained inconclusive on Friday, as negotiations were underway with the smartphone's manufacturer.

According to BlackBerry users in the kingdom - the first country to institute a ban after letting the device be sold to the general public - some key services, including messaging, were blocked during the early afternoon, but then returned several hours later.

A vice-president of Research in Motion (RIM), the Canadian company behind the phone, was said to be in Saudi Arabia for talks with the authorities.

Saudi Arabia officially confirmed reports earlier this week that it would block features on the BlackBerry network as of Friday over regulatory non-compliance issues, without elaborating further.

Media in the Gulf, quoting government officials, started reporting that the ban would enter into effect on Saturday, adding to the confusion.

The Saudi decision followed an announcement by the neighbouring United Arab Emirates that it was instituting a ban from October 11 on most key BlackBerry services, including messaging, web browsing, email and social networking, due to "security concerns."

Other countries like Kuwait and Egypt have warned that they too are considering taking such measures, while Bahrain and Indonesia denied similar rumours, saying they would leave the devices in their countries untouched.

Governments critical of the BlackBerry line of products have said that the method used by RIM to transfer data offshore and under tight encryption could pose a national security threat, though it has been a draw for customers and boosted sales.

Attempts to have more say in communications were being seen by some observers as a security concern coupled with an effort by certain governments to control new media and methods of connectivity.

RIM, which has some 46 million users worldwide, has issued a statement reassuring customers that it would "not compromise the integrity and security of the BlackBerry".


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Brad Dye
With best regards,

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Newsletter Editor


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Wireless Messaging News
Brad Dye, Editor
P.O. Box 266
Fairfield, IL 62837 USA

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Skype: braddye
Telephone: 618-599-7869

Wireless Consulting page
Paging Information Home Page
Marketing & Engineering Papers
AAPC web site

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“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket—safe, dark, motionless, airless—it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.”

—C.S. Lewis

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