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Wireless News Aggregation

Friday — August 23, 2019 — Issue No. 871

Welcome Back To The Wireless Messaging News


I am trying out a reduced-size format this week. The newsletter is about one-half of its former size. This should make it download faster and make it easier to read. Reader comments?






We need your help. This is the only remaining news source dedicated to information about Paging and Wireless Messaging.

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Wireless Messaging News

  • Emergency Radio Communications
  • Wireless Messaging
  • Critical Messaging
  • Two-way Radio
  • Technology
  • Telemetry
  • Science
  • Paging
  • Wi-Fi
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This doesn't mean that nothing is ever published here that mentions a US political party—it just means that the editorial policy of this newsletter is to remain neutral on all political issues. We don't take sides.

About Us

A new issue of the Wireless Messaging Newsletter is 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 web. 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 Messaging 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 Messaging 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.

I spend the whole week searching the Internet for news that I think may be of interest to you — so you won’t have to. This newsletter is an aggregator — a service that aggregates news from other news sources. You can help our community by sharing any interesting news that you find.

Editorial Policy

Editorial Opinion pieces present only the opinions of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the views of any of advertisers or supporters. This newsletter is independent of any trade association. I don't intend to hurt anyone's feelings, but I do freely express my own opinions.

Service Monitors and Frequency Standards for Sale

Motorola Service Monitor

IFR Service Monitor

Efratom Rubidium Standard

(Images are typical units, not actual photos of items offered for sale here.)

Qty Item Notes
2 Late IFR 500As with new batteries
1 Motorola R 2001D  
4 Motorola R 2400 and 2410A  
5 Motorola R 2600 and R 2660 late S/Ns  
4 Motorola R 1200  
2 Motorola R 2200  
2 Stand-alone Efratom Rubidium Frequency Standards 10 MHz output
1 Telawave model 44 wattmeter Recently calibrated
1 IFR 1000S  
All sold with 7 day ROR (Right of Refusal), recent calibration, operation manual and accessories  
Factory carrying cases for each with calibration certificate  
Many parts and accessories  

Frank Moorman animated left arrow

(254) 596-1124

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Advertiser Index

Easy Solutions  (Vaughan Bowden)
IWA Technical Services, Inc.  (Ira Wiesenfeld)
Leavitt Communications  (Phil Leavitt)
Media 1
Prism Paging  (Jim Nelson & John Bishop)
Paging & Wireless Network Planners LLC  (Ron Mercer)
Wex International Limited

Leavitt Communications


Specialists in sales and service of equipment from these leading manufacturers, as well as other two-way radio and paging products:

bendix king COM

motorola blue Motorola SOLUTIONS



Contact us for price and availability please

Philip C. Leavitt
Leavitt Communications
7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253
Web Site:
Mobile phone: 847-494-0000
Telephone: 847-955-0511
Fax: 270-447-1909
Skype ID: pcleavitt

Passive Audio Amps For Smart Phones


The rest of the Passive Audio Amps For Smart Phones page has been move to a separate page.
TAKE ME THERE. animated left arrow





These horns are now on display and for sale at:

The Owl’s Nest
2006 Kelty Road
Franktown, Colorado 80116

Tel: 303-954-8229
Location: Map
Web site:
Social Media: Facebook
Twitter: @owlsnestfranktown
E-mail: Virginia Angus
Allan Angus

Stop in for a demo and a great cup of espresso.


Hong Kong


W8001 (4 Line/8 Line IP67 Alphanumeric Pager)

W8008 Thinnest IP67 Rated Alphanumeric Pager 4 Line/8 Line, OLED Display

W2028 (2 Line/4 Line Alphanumeric Pager)

For Trade inquiries contact:
Eric Dilip Kumar

  • Available in VHF, UHF & 900 MHz Full Range Frequency Bands
  • We are OEM for Major Brand names in USA and Europe
  • We also Design and Manufacture POCSAG Decoder Boards
  • We can Design and Manufacture to customer specifications
  • Factory located in Shenzhen, China
  • Pagers have FCC, RoHs, C-Tick, CE-EMC, IC Approvals

Visit our websites for more details

For ESPAÑOL, PORTUGUÊS AND DEUTSCH versions, please go to:


Some Cellphones Reportedly Exceed FCC Radiation Limits—but Don't Flip Out Just Yet

Ed Cara
August 22, 2019

Photo: Spencer Platt (Getty Images)

A new Chicago Tribune report on cellphone radiation sure sounds alarming: Popular smartphones were found to emit higher-than-allowed levels of radiation. But while some of the findings are definitely worth investigating further, there’s no reason to be freaked out about health risks for now.

The Chicago Tribune, according to its comprehensive report, brought 11 new, popular smartphones of various brands and tested how much radio-frequency radiation they could expose their users to at different distances. The phones, which included four models of iPhone, were sent to an accredited lab where testing was conducted using guidelines established by the Federal Communications Commission. This involved turning on the phones to full power and placing them next to a tub of liquid meant to mimic human tissue.

Overall, the lab found that nearly every phone exceeded the maximum limit for exposure set by the FCC at various distances. This was most apparent when the phones were only 2 millimeters away—a distance that phone companies aren’t forced to test at but which reflects real-world use, such as having the phone in your pocket. When the Tribune confronted Apple about the discrepancy, the company said the testing was done incorrectly. But even when the lab followed Apple’s instructions, meant to alert the phone’s sensors about being close to human skin and signaling to turn the power down, the iPhones still went over the limit at 2 millimeters.

The findings were enough to convince the FCC to do its own series of tests in upcoming months.

“We take seriously any claims on non-compliance with the RF (radio frequency) exposure standards and will be obtaining and testing the subject phones for compliance with FCC rules,” agency spokesman Neil Grace told the Tribune.

The Tribune’s investigation seems to be well-done and reported in a non-alarmist way. And it illustrates that the landscape of cellphone radiation exposure has certainly changed in recent years.

Some companies, such as Samsung, only test their phones at distances of 10 to 15 millimeters from skin, a legally allowed distance, but one that harkens back to the days when people kept their phones on a belt clip (Apple and the other companies included in the report test at 5 millimeters away). The advent of 5G technology, which can use higher frequency bands of electromagnetic energy for their networks, has also spurred calls for the FCC to reevaluate the potential health risks of cellphones.

Earlier this August, however, the FCC announced that it had reviewed the evidence and found that the current safety limits for cellphone radiation exposure were fine and didn’t need to be changed. The Food and Drug Administration, which has coordinated with the FCC on monitoring cellphone safety, agreed with the decision.

“[T]he available scientific evidence to date does not support adverse health effects in humans due to exposures at or under the current limits,” Jeffrey Shuren, director of the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health, wrote to the FCC at the time.

The Tribune’s reporting would suggest that modern phones aren’t always meeting these limits, however, which is definitely concerning. But as even the outlet admits, there’s no clear indication whether these results mean anything for human health. And the overall evidence—outliers aside—still doesn’t point to any conclusive health risks from cellphones.

One major sticking point, which the Tribune alludes to, is the lack of a plausible mechanism of harm. Cellphone radiation isn’t the same type that comes from the Sun or from X-rays, which is called ionizing radiation. These types of energy are known to damage living cells in predictable ways, setting the stage for harmful mutations and eventually a greater risk of cancer. But the same sort of harmful connection hasn’t been shown with humans and the non-ionizing radio-frequency radiation that comes from cellphones.

That doesn’t mean such a link isn’t possible, especially among specific populations like pregnant women. Notably, it took decades for doctors to conclusively show how things like cigarettes really harm the human body. But without a smoking gun and more research, there’s really no basis for concern at the moment.

Besides, if you want to use your cellphone less, it’s not as if there aren’t plenty of other health-related reasons you could latch onto.

Source: gizmodo  

Paging Transmitters 150/900 MHz

The RFI High Performance Paging Transmitter is designed for use in campus, city, state and country-wide paging systems. Designed for use where reliable simulcast systems where RF signal overlap coverage is critical.

  • Commercial Paging systems.
  • Healthcare Paging systems.
  • Public Safety Emergency Services Paging systems.
  • Demand Response Energy Grid Management.

Built-in custom interface for Prism-IPX ipBSC Base Controller for remote control, management and alarm reporting.

  • Use as a stand-alone unit or in wide area network.
  • Mix with other transmitter brands in an existing paging network.
  • Adjustable from 20-250 watts.
  • 110/240 VAC or 48VDC.
  • Absolute Delay Correction.
  • Remote Diagnostics.
  • Configurable alarm thresholds.
  • Integrated Isolator.
  • Superb Reliability.
  • Improved amplifier efficiency.
  • Most reliable high-powered paging transmitter available.

Prism-IPX Systems LLC.

11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Ph: 678-242-5290 Email:

  • Broadcast Services over the Internet for Corporate Communications
  • Seeking Parties for Live Response Applications on Smartphones
  • Click here for more information


“Is Paging Going Away?” by Jim Nelson

  • Click here for English.
  • Click here for German. (Berlin Revision: November 8, 2016)
  • Click here for French.

Here is an English PDF edit of this paper formatted with page breaks and suitable for printing.

Volunteers needed for translations into other languages.


I would like to recommend Easy Solutions for Support of all Glenayre Paging Equipment. This Texas company is owned and operated by Vaughan Bowden. I have known Vaughan for over 35 years. Without going into a long list of his experience and qualifications, let me just say that he was the V.P. of Engineering at PageNet which was—at that time—the largest paging company in the world. So Vaughan knows Paging.

GTES is no longer offering support contracts. GTES was the original group from Vancouver that was setup to offer support to customers that wanted to continue with the legacy Glenayre support. Many U.S. customers chose not to use this service because of the price and the original requirement to upgrade to version 8.0 software (which required expensive hardware upgrades, etc.). Most contracts ended as of February 2018.

If you are at all concerned about future support of Glenayre products, especially the “king of the hill” the GL3000 paging control terminal, I encourage you to talk to Vaughan about a service contract and please tell him about my recommendation.

Easy Solutions

easy solutions

Providing Expert Support and Service Contracts for all Glenayre Paging Systems.

The GL3000 is the most prolific paging system in the world and Easy Solutions gladly welcomes you to join us in providing reliable support to the paging industry for many more decades in the future.

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.

  • We treat our customers like family. We don’t just fix problems . . . We recommend and implement better cost-effective solutions.
  • We are not just another vendor . . . We are a part of your team. All the advantages of high priced full-time employment without the cost.
  • We are not in the Technical Services business . . . We are in the Customer Satisfaction business.

Experts in Paging Infrastructure

  • Glenayre, Motorola, Unipage, etc.
  • Excellent Service Contracts
  • Full Service—Beyond Factory Support
  • Making systems More Reliable and MORE PROFITABLE for over 30 years.

Please see our web site for exciting solutions designed specifically for the Wireless Industry. We also maintain a diagnostic lab and provide important repair and replacement parts services for Motorola and Glenayre equipment. Call or  e-mail  us for more information.

Easy Solutions
3220 San Simeon Way
Plano, Texas 75023

Vaughan Bowden
Telephone: 972-898-1119
Telephone: 214 785-8255

Board of Advisors

The Wireless Messaging News
Board of Advisors

Frank McNeill
Founder & CEO
Communications Specialists
Jim Nelson
President & CEO
Prism Systems International
Kevin D. McFarland, MSCIS
Sr. Application Systems Analyst
Medical Center
Paul Lauttamus, President
Lauttamus Communications & Security
R.H. (Ron) Mercer
Wireless Consultant
Barry Kanne
Paging Industry Veteran
Ira Wiesenfeld, P.E.
Consulting Engineer
Allan Angus
Consulting Engineer

The Board of Advisor members are people with whom I have developed a special rapport, and have met personally. They are not obligated to support the newsletter in any way, except with advice, and maybe an occasional letter to the editor.


Can You Help The Newsletter?

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You can help support The Wireless Messaging News by clicking on the PayPal Donate button above. It is not necessary to be a member of PayPal to use this service.

Reader Support

Newspapers generally cost 75¢ $1.50 a copy and they hardly ever mention paging or wireless messaging, unless in a negative way. If you receive some benefit from this publication maybe you would like to help support it financially?

A donation of $50.00 would certainly help cover a one-year period. If you are wiling and able, please click on the PayPal Donate button above.


by: Al Williams
August 21, 2019

We get it, press releases are full of hyperbole. Cerebras recently announced they’ve built the largest chip ever. The chip has 400,000 cores and contains 1.2 trillion transistors on a die over 46,000 square mm in area. That’s roughly the same as a square about 8.5 inches on each side. But honestly, the WSE — Wafer Scale Engine — is just most of a wafer not cut up. Typically a wafer will have lots of copies of a device on it and it gets split into pieces.

According to the company, the WSE is 56 times larger than the largest GPU on the market. The chip boasts 18 gigabytes of storage spread around the massive die. The problem isn’t making such a beast — although a normal wafer is allowed to have a certain number of bad spots. The real problems come through things such as interconnections and thermal management.

The white paper is detailed while still managing to be a bit fuzzy. In addition to somehow solving the interconnect, packaging and thermal problems with using a whole wafer, the architecture of the cores is supposed to be amenable to sparse matrices and the specific types of algorithms necessary for deep learning.

There’s no word as yet on cost or specific availability, but we were hoping at least for an emulator. However, it is certainly big and if it lives up to its promise could drive new deep learning applications. We’ve seen neural network co-processors before. We even had our own deep dive into them.

Source: hackaday  

Prism-IPX Systems

prism-ipx systems
Critical Messaging that works
Secure . . . Dependable . . .
and Encrypted

Who We Are

Prism-IPX is a leader in providing reliable communications systems using modern designs to meet today’s demands for critical message alerting and delivery. Prism-IPX designs versatile and robust Critical Message Management systems using paging and other wireless technologies for high performance and dependable communications.

What We Make

Prism-IPX Systems products include full-featured radio paging systems with VoIP input, IP based transmitter control systems and paging message encryption. Other options include e-mail messaging, remote switch controllers, Off-The-Air paging message decoders and logging systems.

Contact Us   left arrow


Click on the image above for more info about advertising here.

Internet Protocol Terminal

The IPT accepts Internet or serial messaging using various protocols and can easily convert them to different protocols, or send them out as paging messages.

An ideal platform for hospitals, on-site paging applications, or converting legacy systems to modern protocols.

Input Protocols: Serial and IP
Output Protocols: Serial and IP
FLEX (optional PURC control)   POCSAG (optional PURC control)

Additional/Optional Features

  • Database of up to 5000 subscribers.
  • 4 serial ports on board.
  • Up to 8 phone lines (DID or POTS).
  • Can be configured for auto-fail-over to hot swap standby.
  • 1RU rack mount unit appliance—no moving parts.
  • Easily secure legacy system messages leaving site for HIPAA compliance.
  • Only purchase the protocols/options you need.
  • Add Paging Encryption for HIPAA compliance on site.

Prism-IPX Systems LLC.

11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Ph: 678-242-5290 e-mail:

Paging Data Receiver PDR-4

The PDR-4 is a multi-function paging data receiver that decodes paging messages and outputs them via the serial port, USB or Ethernet connectors.

Designed for use with Prism-IPX ECHO software Message Logging Software to receive messages and log the information for proof of transmission over the air, and if the data was error free.

  • Option—decode capcode list or all messages.
  • Large capcode capacity.
  • Serial, USB and Ethernet output.
  • POCSAG or FLEX page decoding, special SA protocols.
  • Receivers for paging bands in VHF, UHF, 900 MHz.
  • Message activated Alarm Output.
  • 8 programmable relay outputs.
  • Send notifications of a system problem.
  • Synthesized Receiver Tuning.
  • Selectivity better than 60 dB.
  • Frequencies 148-174, 450-470, 929-932 MHz.
  • Image Rejection better than 55 dB.
  • Spurious Rejection better than 55 dB.
  • Channel Spacing 12.5 or 25 kHz.
  • Power 5VDC.
  • Receiving Sensitivity 5µV at 1200 bps.

Prism-IPX Systems LLC.

11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Ph: 678-242-5290 e-mail:

Wireless Network Planners

Wireless Network Planners
Wireless Specialists

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

ron mercer
Telephone: 631-786-9359 left arrow left arrow

Streaming Services are Cracking Down on Password Sharing

by Jess Barnes on August 23, 2019

The days of freely sharing streaming service passwords with friends and extended family may be coming to an end. Companies are beginning to take further measures to prevent multiple people from sharing an account.

Disney and Charter have teamed up and announced, “a comprehensive distribution agreement to continue to deliver Disney’s robust lineup of premier sports, news and entertainment content to Spectrum customers.”

As part of that partnership, the companies also said that they would be working together to fight piracy. In the joint statement, the two companies said they have “agreed to work together on piracy mitigation. The two companies will work together to implement business rules and techniques to address such issues as unauthorized access and password sharing.”

Disney+ won’t be the only service with password sharing policies in place. Hulu has a limit on how many people can stream at once and will prevent devices beyond that limit from streaming. For Netflix, password sharing violates the terms of service, but the company doesn’t have a way of enforcing the policy.

Here’s how some of those services are currently preventing password sharing.

  • Hulu limits basic and ad-free accounts to stream on two devices simultaneously, which can help curb account sharing. Adding extra screens means paying extra money which can help prevent Hulu from losing money.
  • Amazon Prime controls account sharing by linking every account to a credit card and to the Amazon site. Sharing a password would mean giving someone access to your credit card information.
  • HBO allows “members of your household” to share an account, but doesn’t specify details. However, you could get a message if you have too many streams playing at once, citing “security reasons.”
  • YouTube allows for a five person family group, but only allows three simultaneous streams. The person who creates the account, the family manager, is in charge of who has access to the account.
Source: Cord Cutters News  

Consulting Alliance

Brad Dye, Ron Mercer, Allan Angus, Vic Jackson, and Ira Wiesenfeld are friends and colleagues who work both together and independently, on wireline and wireless communications projects.

Click here left arrow for a summary of their qualifications and experience. Each one has unique abilities. We would be happy to help you with a project, and maybe save you some time and money.

Note: We do not like Patent Trolls, i.e. “a person or company who enforces patent rights against accused infringers in an attempt to collect licensing fees, but does not manufacture products or supply services based upon the patents in question.” We have helped some prominent law firms defend their clients against this annoyance, and would be happy to do some more of this same kind of work.

Some people use the title “consultant” when they don't have a real job. We actually do consulting work, and help others based on our many years of experience.

“If you would know the road ahead, ask someone who has traveled it.”
— Chinese Proverb

Consulting Alliance

Remote AB Switches

ABX-1 switches are often used at remote transmitter sites to convert from old, outdated and unsupported controllers to the new modern Prism-IPX ipBSC base station controllers. Remotely switch to new controllers with GUI commands.


ABX-3 switches are widely used for enabling or disabling remote equipment and switching I/O connections between redundant messaging systems.


Common Features:

  • RJ45 for A, B and Common connectors.
  • Manual push button or use Prism IP commands to switch one or more relays.
  • Single or Dual Port Control card for IP or Serial connection.
  • Form C relay—control local connection.
  • Power Loss Indicator.
  • Rear Panel Connector for controlling the switch externally.
  • Power Source: 5VDC for ABX-1; 12VDC for ABX-3.

Prism-IPX Systems LLC.

11175 Cicero Dr., Alpharetta, GA 30022
Ph: 678-242-5290 e-mail:

Leavitt Communications

We can supply alphanumeric display, numeric display, and voice pagers.

We also offer NEW and refurbished Alphamate 250s, refurbished Alphamate IIs, the original Alphamate refurbished, and new and refurbished pagers, pager repairs, pager parts, and accessories. We are FULL SERVICE in Paging! Outstanding service is our goal.

E-mail Phil Leavitt ( ) for pricing and delivery information, or for a list of other available paging and two-way related equipment.

Phil Leavitt

7508 N. Red Ledge Drive
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253

Friday, August 23, 2019

Volume 7 | Issue 165

Rural Broadband Gets Nearly $5B in Funds From the FCC

The FCC Thursday authorized over $4.9 billion in support over the next decade for maintaining, improving, and expanding affordable rural broadband. The carrier support includes tribal land, too [...].

The money will go towards 455,334 homes and businesses served by 171 carriers in 39 states and American Samoa. The funds are targeted to smaller rural carriers, traditionally known as “rate-of-return” carriers. These carriers agreed this year to accept subsidies based on the FCC’s Alternative Connect America Cost Model, or A-CAM, which provides predictability, rewards efficiency, and provides more value for each taxpayer dollar.

The homes and businesses are located in sparsely populated rural areas where the per-location price of deployment and ongoing costs of providing broadband service are high. They require support from the FCC’s Universal Service Fund to facilitate network improvements and keep rates reasonably comparable to those in urban areas.

In return for the support, carriers must maintain, improve, and expand broadband throughout their service areas, including providing service of at least 25 Megabits per second downstream and 3 Mbps upstream to over 363,000 locations. Providers will be held accountable through an enforceable schedule for delivering improved and expanded service, with the first interim deployment obligation occurring in 2022.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai called the action a win-win for carriers and taxpayers. “Carriers get the predictable support they need to deliver broadband to their customers in these high-cost rural areas. And taxpayers, who fund this support through a fee on their phone bills, are getting more bang for their buck.” The list of states where carriers will receive support begins on page two.

51 Attorneys General, 12 Carriers Team Up to Fight Illegal Robocalls

A public/private coalition of 51 attorneys general and 12 wireless carriers on Thursday said they’ve agreed to adopt eight principles to fight illegal robocalls. The parties say the deal will require carriers to take steps toward blocking the calls and work with law enforcement to bring bad actors to justice.

"Illegal robocalls harass and harm people all across this country," North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein said during a news conference. "By adopting these technological solutions and improving their cooperation with law enforcement, these phone companies are going to better serve their customers."

The agreement between industry groups and the government took more than a year to hammer out, reported The Hill. The coalition of companies includes AT&T, Bandwidth, CenturyLink, Charter, Comcast, Consolidated, Frontier, Sprint, T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular, Verizon, and Windstream. The carriers agreed to implement call-blocking technology at no extra cost to customers, and offer their customers a range of "easy-to-use call blocking and labeling tools." The carriers will abide by a set of eight principles.

The state-level efforts come as the federal government is also working toward the same goal. The FCC earlier this summer voted to allow phone carriers to block suspicious calls by default, Inside Towers reported. Many of the carriers involved in the new agreement had already promised to implement the call authentication technology.

In Congress, bills passed by the House and Senate would increase penalties for illegal robocallers and promote call authentication technology. Staffers are working over the August break trying to reconcile their two anti-robocall bills, H.R. 3375 and S. 151. Lawmakers are optimistic of an advancing deal and getting the reconciled version to the President’s desk for his signature this fall, according to Politico.

In response, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai praised the effort, noting that: “Few things can bring together policy leaders across the political spectrum like the fight against unwanted robocalls. I salute today’s bipartisan, nationwide effort to encourage best practices for combating robocalls and spoofing and am pleased that several voice service providers have agreed to abide by them.”

USTelecom, CTIA and NCTA have been working on an industry effort to fight robocalls and spoofed calls, Inside Towers reported. In a joint statement Thursday, they called illegal robocalls, “a deliberate attempt by criminals to flood voice networks with unwanted calls that scam, spoof and prey upon vulnerable consumers who are justifiably fed up. We appreciate the efforts of the state attorneys general, the FCC, the FTC and other agencies to further collaboration that will hold the scammers behind these calls responsible for their actions.”

NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association CEO Shirley Bloomfield said NTCA member companies take robocalling concerns seriously. “NTCA is supportive of the concepts addressed by the Anti-Robocall Principles and we look forward to working with policy makers to overcome remaining implementation obstacles so that rural operators can participate in the effort to eradicate illegal and unwanted robocalling.”

Source: Inside Towers newsletter Courtesy of the editor of Inside Towers.
It is daily by subscription. Check it out.

BloostonLaw Newsletter

Selected portions [sometimes more — sometimes less — sometimes the whole updates] of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update and/or the BloostonLaw Private Users Update — newsletters from the Law Offices of Blooston, Mordkofsky, Dickens, Duffy & Prendergast, LLP — are reproduced in this section of The Wireless Messaging News with kind permission from the firm. The firm's contact information is included at the end of this section of the newsletter.

 BloostonLaw Telecom Update Vol. 22, No. 35 August 21, 2019 

Guidance About Windstream Bankruptcy

BloostonLaw is working with a large commercial law firm in Florida with a highly competent bankruptcy team, and we have been able to help multiple clients get answers questions they may have about the ongoing Windstream bankruptcy proceeding. Carriers with concerns about amounts due, assets subject to bankruptcy, potential sale of Windstream properties or any other aspect of the proceeding should contact the firm for more information.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, John Prendergast, Mary Sisak, and Sal Taillefer.


FCC Announces Delay in CAF Phase II Eligible Locations Adjustment Process Until Further Notice

On August 19, the FCC issued a Public Notice announcing a delay in the initiation of the Connect America Fund (CAF) Phase II post-auction process to adjust the deployment obligations and support of authorized auction winners when the total number of actual locations in eligible areas is less than the number of funded locations. In a future order, the FCC will adopt specific procedures and requirements for this eligible location adjustment process and announce a new filing deadline that provides participants “adequate time to compile and file evidence.”

In the CAF Phase II Order on Reconsideration, the FCC required participants to submit, within one year after release of the Phase II auction closing public notice (August 28, 2019), evidence of the total number of locations in the eligible areas in the state, but also directed its Wireline Competition Bureau to “release a public notice or order (following its issuance of a notice and opportunity for comment) detailing instructions, deadlines, and requirements for filing valid geo-location data and evidence for both [participants] and commenters.” According to the Notice, the delay is a result of several factors, including: the issues raised in comments and ex parte communications in response to the September 10, 2018 and June 5, 2019 Public Notices seeking comment; and the requirement to obtain Paperwork Reduction Act approval.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, Mary Sisak, and Sal Taillefer.

Comments on Rural Digital Opportunity Fund Due September 20

On August 21, the FCC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund was published in the Federal Register. As a result, comments are due on or before September 20 and reply comments are due on or before October 21.

As we reported in a previous edition of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update, the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund would target support to areas that lack access to 25/3 Mbps broadband service. It would be implemented though a two-phase approach that would allocate support using a multi-round, descending clock auction, similar to how Connect America Fund Phase II was conducted. Phase I of the RDOF auction would allocate support to wholly unserved census blocks and Phase II would allocate support to unserved locations in partially unserved census blocks along with areas not won in Phase I. The budget is proposed to be set at $20.4 billion in high-cost universal service support over a 10-year support term, making available at least $16 billion for Phase I and the remainder available for Phase II.

The FCC proposes to use a similar “weighting” system for bids as it used in CAF II, and proposes using the same service milestones. Under this system, being assigned a high weight hurts your proposal. The FCC is also proposing to set reserve prices using the Connect America Cost Model to establish the maximum per-location bid amount that the FCC is willing to fund, and a transition framework for phasing down existing support in auctioned areas. Specifically, the FCC seeks comment on how to transition (i) incumbent price cap carriers from legacy high-cost support in areas where Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support is awarded and (ii) price cap carriers from CAF Phase II model-based support in areas where Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support is awarded.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Gerry Duffy, Mary Sisak, and Sal Taillefer.

FCC Issues Report on CenturyLink Network Outage; Makes Recommendations to Bolster Reliability

On August 19, the FCC released a report detailing the cause and impact of a nationwide CenturyLink network outage that occurred last December, along with recommendations to help prevent similar outages from occurring in the future. Specifically, the report identifies network reliability best practices “that, if implemented, could have prevented the outage, or at least mitigated its effects.” These include:

  • Turning off or disabling system features that are not in use;
  • Including in network monitoring memory and processor utilization alarms that are regularly audited to ensure functionality and evaluated to improve early detection and calibration; and
  • Having standard operating procedures for network repair that address cases where normal networking monitoring procedures are inoperable or otherwise unavailable.

A copy of the full report is available here. According to a Press Release, the FCC will next engage in stakeholder outreach to promote best practices and contact other major transport providers to discuss their network practices. In addition, the Bureau will offer its assistance to smaller providers to help ensure that our nation’s communications networks remain robust, reliable, and resilient.

Beginning on December 27, 2018, CenturyLink experienced an outage on its fiber network that lasted for almost 37 hours. As described in today’s report, the outage was caused by an equipment failure that was exacerbated by a network configuration error. The outage affected communications service providers, businesses customers, and consumers who relied upon CenturyLink’s transport services, which route communications traffic from various providers to locations across the country. The outage resulted in extensive disruptions to phone and broadband service, including 911 calling. As many as 22 million customers across 39 states were affected, including approximately 17 million customers across 29 states who lacked reliable access to 911. At least 886 calls to 911 were not delivered.

“This massive ‘sunny day’ outage was completely unacceptable and impacted millions of customers across the country. Americans expect and deserve reliable phone and broadband service—especially the ability to call 911,” said FCC Chairman Pai. “It’s important for communications providers to take heed of the lessons learned from this incident. I also thank the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau for its thorough investigation and recommending next steps to promote network reliability.”

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Mary Sisak, and Sal Taillefer.

Law & Regulation

News Sources Report Draft Lifeline Order and NPRM on Circulation Within FCC

On August 19, multiple news sources – including C-NET and FierceWireless – reported that FCC Chairman Ajit Pai's office began circulating an Order and Notice of Proposed Rulemaking aimed at combating fraud in the Lifeline program. At the time this edition of the BloostonLaw Telecom Update went to press, no formal Press Release or Public Notice from the FCC regarding the circulation of the document was available. Rather, according to the various reports, FCC official briefed reporters on the matter.

The briefing reportedly included statements by FCC officials that the draft order would, among other things, require ETCs to prove prospective Lifeline users are living people; prohibit carriers from offering sales employees enrollment-based commissions; and require ETCs to collect their own eligibility documentation if verification was previously done through a state or federal database (where the original verification is no longer available). The Order would also reportedly take steps to reduce duplicate subscribership and better detect rule violations.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens, Mary Sisak, and Sal Taillefer.

FCC Seeks Comment on NCIC Petition for Forbearance from USF Contribution

On August 16, the FCC issued a Public Notice announcing that it is seeking comment on a petition filed by Network Communications International Corporation (NCIC) – a provider of interstate and international inmate calling services – in which they seek forbearance from USF contribution requirements. Comments or oppositions are due September 16, and replies are due October 1.

According to NCIC, Inmate Calling Service (ICS) providers are required to make contributions to USF based on their provision of interstate and international ICS calls originating from correctional facilities located in the United States, but at the same time a significant portion of ICS customers that are paying USF ancillary fees are otherwise eligible to receive assistance from USF programs. “As a result, the payment by ICS customers of USF ancillary fees has led to the absurd result of USF-eligible recipients actually contributing to the very programs from which they receive services.” NCIC states that a grant of its petition would “help ensure that ICS customers pay just and reasonable rates for ICS calls … provide more protection for ICS customers than is currently present … encourage additional contact between inmates and loved ones …” without harming the USF budget.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens and Mary Sisak.

FCC Settles Investigations into Misuse of EAS Tones by Cable and Broadcasters

On August 15, the FCC announced that it has reached settlements with TV broadcaster, cable TV networks, and a radio broadcaster for misusing Emergency Alert System (EAS) or Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) tones. Episodes of ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” AMC’s “The Walking Dead,” and Discovery’s “Lone Star Law,” as well as promos aired by Meruelo Radio Holdings, LLC’s Los Angeles-area KDAY and KDEY-FM’s morning radio show, all aired actual or simulated alert tones in violation of the Commission’s rules.

Combined, the companies agreed to pay over $600,000 in civil penalties, and each committed to a strict compliance plan to ensure such actions do not recur. The specific settlements include:

  • ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” – On October 3, 2018, ABC broadcast an episode of the late-night show “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” which used a simulated WEA tone three times during a comedic sketch. ABC transmitted the episode nationwide to 250 TV stations, including eight of its owned and operated stations, which in turn broadcast the episode in their markets. ABC admitted to the violation, agreed to pay a $395,000 civil penalty, and committed to a compliance plan.
  • AMC’s “The Walking Dead” – In February 2019, AMC Networks twice included EAS tones in the “Omega Episode” of its television program, “The Walking Dead.” This was transmitted on eight separate instances across cable and satellite systems nationwide. AMC admitted to the violation, agreed to pay a $104,000 civil penalty, and committed to a compliance plan.
  • Animal Planet’s “Lone Star Law” – Discovery’s Animal Planet network broadcast an episode of “Lone Star Law” entitled “Thousand Year Flood,” which included an actual WEA Signal. The crew was filming Texas Game Wardens following Hurricane Harvey and caught the tone of a real wireless alert received by phones during filming. Discovery transmitted the episode eight times to cable and satellite systems nationwide from January to March 2018. Discovery admitted to the violation, agreed to pay a $68,000 civil penalty, and committed to a compliance plan.
  • Meruelo Radio Holdings – In the fall of 2017, Meruelo’s KDAY and KDEY-FM included a simulation of an EAS attention signal in a promotion for its morning show. The promotion was broadcast 106 times on KDAY and 33 times on KDEY-FM’s simulcast of KDAY. The company admitted to the violation, agreed to pay a $67,000 civil penalty, and committed to a compliance plan.

Concurrently with the announcement of the settlements, the FCC issued an Enforcement Advisory formally reminding the industry about the existing law as it applies to the misuse of emergency alert tones. The advisory states: “We remain concerned about the misuse of the EAS codes and EAS and WEA Attention Signals, or simulations thereof, to capture audience attention during advertisements; dramatic, entertainment, and educational programs, and at any other time that there is no genuine alert, authorized test, or authorized PSA about the EAS or WEA that is accompanied by an appropriate disclaimer. The FCC may issue sanctions for such violations, including, but not limited to, monetary forfeitures.”

BloostonLaw Contact: Cary Mitchell.


FCC Staff Recommends Designating ‘988’ as National Suicide Prevention Hotline

On August 15, the FCC announced that it has sent a report to Congress which recommends that the Commission consider designating 988 as the 3-digit dialing code to be used for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The report, mandated by the National Suicide Hotline Improvement Act of 2018, finds that such a 3-digit number “would likely make it easier for Americans in crisis to access potentially life-saving resources.”

Currently, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline has a 10-digit number, 1-800-273-8255 (TALK). Calls to the Lifeline are routed from anywhere in the United States to the closest certified crisis center, and in 2018, trained Lifeline counselors answered over 2.2 million calls and over 100,000 online chats. Chairman Pai is planning to launch a rulemaking proceeding in which the Commission would consider designating a 3-digit number— specifically, 988—for a national suicide prevention and mental health crisis hotline. The report examines the feasibility of using various 3-digit numbers and finds that 988 could be implemented more easily and quickly than repurposing an existing 3-digit N11 code like 511 or 611. The rulemaking would collect further public comment from all interested stakeholders on the findings in the report.

“There is a suicide epidemic in this country, and it is disproportionately affecting at-risk populations, including our Veterans and LGBTQ youth,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. “Crisis call centers have been shown to save lives. This report recommends using a three-digit number to make it easier to access the critical suicide prevention and mental health services these call centers provide. I intend to move forward on this recommendation. In the meantime, my heart goes out to anyone facing a crisis. I hope they will contact 1- 800-273-TALK for support today.”


AUGUST 29: COPYRIGHT STATEMENT OF ACCOUNTS. The Copyright Statement of Accounts form plus royalty payment for the first half of calendar year 2019 is due to be filed August 29 at the Library of Congress’ Copyright Office by cable TV service providers.

BloostonLaw Contact: Gerry Duffy.

SEPTEMBER 3: FCC FORM 477, LOCAL COMPETITION AND BROADBAND REPORTING FORM. Normally due September 1, this year’s filing falls on a federal holiday weekend, pushing the deadline back to the next business day. Four types of entities must file this form:

  1. Facilities-based Providers of Broadband Connections to End User Locations: Entities that are facilities-based providers of broadband connections – which are wired “lines” or wireless “channels” that enable the end user to receive information from and/or send information to the Internet at information transfer rates exceeding 200 kbps in at least one direction – must complete and file the applicable portions of this form for each state in which the entity provides one or more such connections to end user locations. For the purposes of Form 477, an entity is a “facilities-based” provider of broadband connections to end user locations if it owns the portion of the physical facility that terminates at the end user location, if it obtains unbundled network elements (UNEs), special access lines, or other leased facilities that terminate at the end user location and provisions/equips them as broadband, or if it provisions/equips a broadband wireless channel to the end user location over licensed or unlicensed spectrum. Such entities include incumbent and competitive local exchange carriers (LECs), cable system operators, fixed wireless service providers (including “wireless ISPs”), terrestrial and satellite mobile wireless service providers, MMDS providers, electric utilities, municipalities, and other entities. (Such entities do not include equipment suppliers unless the equipment supplier uses the equipment to provision a broadband connection that it offers to the public for sale. Such entities also do not include providers of fixed wireless services (e.g., “Wi-Fi” and other wireless ethernet, or wireless local area network, applications) that only enable local distribution and sharing of a premises broadband facility.)
  2. Providers of Wired or Fixed Wireless Local Telephone Services: Incumbent and competitive LECs must complete and file the applicable portions of the form for each state in which they provide local exchange service to one or more end user customers (which may include “dial-up” ISPs).
  3. Providers of Interconnected Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) Service: Interconnected VoIP service is a service that enables real-time, two-way voice communications; requires a broadband connection from the user’s location; requires Internet-protocol compatible customer premises equipment; and permits users generally to receive calls that originate on the public switched telephone network and to terminate calls to the public switched telephone network. Interconnected VoIP providers must complete and file the applicable portions of the form for each state in which they provide interconnected VoIP service to one or more subscribers, with the state determined for reporting purposes by the location of the subscriber’s broadband connection or the subscriber’s “Registered Location” as of the data-collection date. “Registered Location” is the most recent information obtained by an interconnected VoIP service provider that identifies the physical location of an end user.
  4. Providers of Mobile Telephony Services: Facilities-based providers of mobile telephony services must complete and file the applicable portions of this form for each state in which they serve one or more mobile telephony subscribers. A mobile telephony service is a real-time, two-way switched voice service that is interconnected with the public switched network using an in-network switching facility that enables the provider to reuse frequencies and accomplish seamless handoff of subscriber calls. A mobile telephony service provider is considered “facilities-based” if it serves a subscriber using spectrum for which the entity holds a license that it manages, or for which it has obtained the right to use via lease or other arrangement with a Band Manager.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Ben Dickens and Gerry Duffy.

SEPTEMBER 30: FCC FORM 396-C, MVPD EEO PROGRAM REPORTING FORM. Each year on September 30, multi-channel video program distributors (“MVPDs”) must file with the FCC an FCC Form 396-C, Multi- Channel Video Programming Distributor EEO Program Annual Report, for employment units with six or more full-time employees. Users must access the FCC’s electronic filing system via the Internet in order to submit the form; it will not be accepted if filed on paper unless accompanied by an appropriate request for waiver of the electronic filing requirement. Certain MVPDs also will be required to complete portions of the Supplemental Investigation Sheet (“SIS”) located at the end of the Form. These MVPDs are specifically identified in a Public Notice each year by the FCC.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Gerry Duffy and Sal Taillefer.

OCTOBER 15: 911 RELIABILITY CERTIFICATION. Covered 911 Service Providers, which are defined as entities that “[p]rovide[] 911, E911, or NG911 capabilities such as call routing, automatic location information (ALI), automatic number identification (ANI), or the functional equivalent of those capabilities, directly to a public safety answering point (PSAP), statewide default answering point, or appropriate local emergency authority,” or that “[o]perate[] one or more central offices that directly serve a PSAP,” are required certify that they have taken reasonable measures to provide reliable 911 service with respect to three substantive requirements: (i) 911 circuit diversity; (ii) central office backup power; and (iii) diverse network monitoring by October 15. Certifications must be made through the FCC’s portal.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Mary Sisak and Sal Taillefer.

NOVEMBER 1: FCC FORM 499-Q, TELECOMMUNICATIONS REPORTING WORKSHEET. All telecommunications common carriers that expect to contribute more than $10,000 to federal Universal Service Fund (USF) support mechanisms must file this quarterly form. The FCC has modified this form in light of its decision to establish interim measures for USF contribution assessments. The form contains revenue information from the prior quarter plus projections for the next quarter. Form 499-Q relates only to USF contributions. It does not relate to the cost recovery mechanisms for the Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS) Fund, the North American Numbering Plan Administration (NANPA), and the shared costs of local number portability (LNP), which are covered in the annual Form 499-A that is due April 1.

BloostonLaw Contacts: Mary Sisak and Sal Taillefer.

Calendar At-a-Glance

Aug. 23 – Reply comments are due on SHAKEN/STIR NPRM.
Aug. 26 – Reply comments are due on USF Cap NPRM.
Aug. 30 – Comments are due on Competitive Broadband Access to Multiple Tenant Environments NPRM.

Sep. 3 – FCC Form 477 due (Local Competition and Broadband Report).
Sep. 3 – HAC Record Retention and Website Posting Requirement Compliance Deadline.
Sep. 9 – Short Form Application Deadline for Auction 103.
Sep. 16 – Comments are due on NCIC USF Contribution Forbearance Petition
Sep. 20 – Comments are due in EEO Improvement NPRM.
Sep. 20 – Comments are due on Rural Digital Opportunity Fund.
Sep. 30 – Reply comments due on Competitive Broadband Access to Multiple Tenant Environments NPRM.
Sep. 30 – FCC Form 396-C (MVPD EEO Program Annual Report).

Oct. 1 – Comments are due on NCIC USF Contribution Forbearance Petition
Oct. 3 – HAC Certification Due. Oct. 15 – 911 Reliability Certification.
Oct. 21 – Reply comments are due on Rural Digital Opportunity Fund.

Nov. 1 – FCC Form 499-Q (Quarterly Telecommunications Reporting Worksheet) is due.
Nov. 4 – Reply comments are due in EEO Improvement NPRM.

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“No Roots”

(Alice Merton Cover) — The Petersens

The Petersens
Published on Nov 27, 2018

Cover by The Petersens - Branson's Bluegrass & Gospel Show

Lead Vocal & Mandolin: Julianne Petersen
Harmony & Fiddle: Katie Petersen
Harmony & Banjo: Ellen Petersen
Dobro: Emmett Franz
Guitar: Matt Petersen
Bass: Karen Petersen
Videography: Aaron Clark Photography
Songwriters: Nicolas Rebscher / Alice Merton
Producer: Nicolas Rebscher
No Roots lyrics © Downtown Music Publishing, BMG Rights Management

Source: YouTube  


“Life is short and the older you get, the more you feel it. Indeed, the shorter it is. People lose their capacity to walk, run, travel, think, and experience life. I realise how important it is to use the time I have.”

—Viggo Mortensen

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