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Press Releases to Co-Chair 'Metrics' Working Group of National Broadband Strategy Group

WASHINGTON, January 10, 2009 – The National Broadband Strategy “Call to Action” on Friday announced the co-chairs of six working groups that are seeking to craft national policies to help promote universal broadband throughout the United States.


on Executive Director Drew Clark to Co-Chair Working Group with Robert Atkinson of Information Technology & Innovation Foundation; Other Groups Announced

Press Release

WASHINGTON, January 10, 2009 – The National Broadband Strategy “Call to Action” on Friday announced the co-chairs of six working groups that are seeking to craft national policies to help promote universal broadband throughout the United States. Executive Director Drew Clark will co-chair the working group on “Metrics” together with Robert Atkinson, President of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation.

Since its launch in January 2008, has been at the forefront of ensuring that information about local broadband deployment, competition, speeds and quality of service is available and publicly usable.

The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation think tank has been been a key player in the effort to formulate and promote public policies advancing technological innovation and productivity.

The National Broadband Strategy initiative has has been described as “an unprecedented display of consensus, a broad and diverse array of groups concerned about America’s broadband future,” and an effort aimed at “providing President-elect Obama and the incoming Congress a policy framework for a comprehensive national broadband strategy.”

The Working Group on “Metrics” has the following charge:

Timely, accurate, and trustworthy data on current and future deployment, adoption, and use of broadband connections to the Internet are essential at every step in the process of developing and implementing a National Broadband Strategy.  Good data are necessary to establish meaningful goals, to evaluate how well we are doing in meeting these goals, to make appropriate policy adjustments if we are not, to ensure accountability, and to compare our performance with that of other leading nations in an increasingly competitive global economy.  Service providers and investors need good data to make sound investments.  Users of broadband connections need good data to make wise choices among available options.  The mission of the Working Group on Metrics is to develop as much agreement as possible on the nature, quality, and timeliness of the data needed for all of these purposes, and on how such data should be collected and disseminated.

Co-Chairs:  Robert Atkinson (Information Technology and Innovation Foundation) and Drew Clark (Broadband Census)

The other working groups are on the need for a national broadband strategy, the goals of such a call to action, the national availability of broadband, adoption and use of broadband technologies, and implementation of a broadband policy.

The chairs of each groups are as follows:

  • The Need for a National Broadband Strategy. Co-Chairs:  Jeff Campbell (Cisco) and Jonathan Rintels (Center for Creative Voices in the Media)
  • Goals. Co-Chairs: Rick Cimerman (National Cable & Telecommunications Association) and John Windhausen (EDUCAUSE and American Library Association)
  • Metrics. Co-Chairs:  Robert Atkinson (Information Technology and Innovation Foundation) and Drew Clark (Broadband Census)
  • Availability. Co-Chairs:  Brent Olson (AT&T) and Ben Scott (Free Press)
  • Adoption and Use. Co-Chairs: Charles Benton (Benton Foundation) and Link Hoewing (Verizon)
  • Implementation. Co-Chairs:  Diane Duffy (Telcordia) and Geoff Daily (App-Rising)

The “Metrics” working group will seek to identify the best criteria to measure availability, adoption, cost, speed, etc., in order to establish a current baseline and measure progress in reaching goals/targets. The group will also analyze the strengths and weaknesses of the broadband data collection and dissemination practices in the United States and abroad.

The group will also recommend techniques to collect, analyze, present, and disseminate data on broadband connectivity, and prepare for and participate in the Coalition’s event to be held in the Spring or early Summer of 2009.

Signatories to the National Broadband Strategy “Call for Action” will be invited to participate in the working groups. The strategy is being shepherded by James Baller of the Baller Herbst Law Group.

National Broadband Strategy References

Drew Clark is the Editor and Publisher of and a nationally-respected telecommunications attorney at The CommLaw Group. He has closely tracked the trends in and mechanics of digital infrastructure for 20 years, and has helped fiber-based and fixed wireless providers navigate coverage, identify markets, broker infrastructure, and operate in the public right of way. The articles and posts on Broadband Breakfast and affiliated social media, including the BroadbandCensus Twitter feed, are not legal advice or legal services, do not constitute the creation of an attorney-client privilege, and represent the views of their respective authors.


FCC Delays Auction of Citizens Broadband Radio Service Frequences in Light of COVID-19 Pandemic from Coronavirus



Seal of the Federal Communications Commission

Agency Changes Upcoming Auction 105 Schedule, Postpones Auction 106

Adjustments Made in Light of COVID-19 Pandemic

WASHINGTON, March 25, 2020—The Federal Communications Commission today announced schedule changes for Auction 105 as well as the postponement of Auction 106.
Given the COVID-19 pandemic, these changes were deemed necessary in order to protect the health and safety of Commission staff and to allow parties additional time to prepare to
participate in Auctions 105 and 106.

“Many Americans have had to make tough decisions on how they do business in this rapidly changing environment, and the FCC is no different,” said agency Chairman Ajit Pai. “After consulting agency staff within the relevant Bureaus and Offices, we determined that it was in everyone’s best interest to make these changes. But we remain committed to holding the 3.5 GHz auction this summer and look forward to beginning this important mid-band auction in July.”

For Auction 105, involving the auction of Priority Access Licenses for the 3550-3650 MHz band, the short-form application (FCC Form 175) filing window will now open on April 23,
2020 at 12 p.m. EDT and will close on May 7 at 6 p.m. EDT. Upfront payments will be due June 19.

Bidding will begin on July 23. Interested parties should continue to monitor the Auction 105 website at for any future announcements regarding the auction schedule and other important auction information. To read the Auction 105 Public Notice, visit

The FCC is postponing indefinitely Auction 106, an auction of construction permits in the FM broadcast service that was scheduled to begin on April 28. Auction 106 applicants that
submitted upfront payments may obtain a refund of those deposits after submitting a written request. Additional processes are outlined in today’s Public Notice. A revised schedule will
be announced in a future public notice. To read the Auction 106 Public Notice, visit

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Press Releases

Tech Freedom and Other Advocacy Groups Push Back Against Growing Pressure to Modify Section 230



WASHINGTON, July 11, 2019 – Pushing back against a growing group of critics on the right and the left, the pro-free-market pro-free-speech group Tech Freedom on Thursday released a set of seven principles and online resources designed to “guide conversation about amending Section 230.”

As the principles statement declares: “we value the balance between freely exchanging ideas, fostering innovation, and limiting harmful speech. Because this is an exceptionally delicate balance, Section 230 reform poses a substantial risk of failing to address policymakers’ concerns and harming the Internet overall.”

In its current form, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (and part of the 1996 Telecom Act) holds online content creators responsible for what they publish, while protecting third parties that generate this content from liability.

“Section 230 is the law that made today’s Internet possible. Without it, hosting user-generated content would be impossible. Today’s most popular social websites would never have taken off and the Internet would look basically like cable,” said Tech Freedom President Berin Szóka.

“Making Section 230 protections contingent upon approval of government bureaucrats would be a grave mistake. Regulation must evolve as the Internet evolves, but creating new government powers that would be subject to the whims of whichever party occupied the White House would be bad for all Americans,” said Kevin Glass, vice president of communications at National Taxpayers Union.

The statement also included expressions of support from Prof. Eric Goldman, Santa Clara University School of Law, Sharon Bradford Franklin, director of Surveillance & Cybersecurity Policy, New America’s Open Technology Institute, Emma Llanso, director of the Free Expression Project, Center for Democracy & Technology, Bartlett Cleland, president of the Innovation Economy Alliance, and others.

Some of Tech Freedom’s resources on free speech and Section 230 on its website, including:

  • An op-ed “Some conservatives need a First Amendment refresher”
  • A letter to AG Session “DOJ Inquiry re Tech Companies Bias is Misguided”
  • A blogpost “Reality Check for Trump and Republicans Crying ‘Bias’”!
  • Tech Freedom President Berin Szóka’s testimony before the House Judiciary Committee on the filtering practices of social media platforms
  • A statement on the passage of SESTA
  • A statement on the takedown of Backpage and its implications for Section 230 and recent sex trafficking legislation
  • Tech Policy Podcast #226: The Fairness Doctrine: Next Generation
  • Tech Policy Podcast #214: Information Intermediaries in a Nutshell

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Federal Communications Commission Announces $169 Million in Rural Broadband Funding



WASHINGTON, June 10, 2019 – The Federal Communications Commission on Monday authorized $166.8 million in funding over the next decade to expand broadband to 60,850 unserved rural homes and businesses in 22 states. Providers will begin receiving funding this month. A map of the winning bids is available here.

This funding represents the second wave of support from last year’s successful Connect America Fund Phase II auction. The FCC authorized the first wave of funding in May, providing $111.6 million in funding over the next decade to expand service to 37,148 unserved homes and businesses in 12 states.

To date, the first two rounds of authorizations are providing $278.4 million over the next decade to expand service to 97,998 new locations.  Over the coming months, the FCC will be authorizing additional funding as it approves the final applications of the winning bidders from the auction.

“I’m pleased to announce that the second round of funding starts now for buildout of high-speed Internet service to 60,850 rural homes and businesses, which will bring them to the right side of the digital divide and give them access to the 21st-century opportunities that broadband offers,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai.

“Providers will be deploying gigabit-speed connections to the majority of locations for which funding is being authorized today, while nearly 8,000 homes and small businesses on Tribal lands will be getting fixed broadband service for the first time,” he said.

Providers must build out to 40 percent of the assigned homes and businesses in the areas won in a state within three years.  Buildout must increase by 20 percent in each subsequent year, until complete buildout is reached at the end of the sixth year.

The Connect America Fund Phase II auction is part of a broader effort by the FCC to close the digital divide in rural America.

In addition to the funding that will be made available through this auction, the Commission recently provided 186 companies in 43 states $65.7 million in additional annual funding to upgrade broadband speeds in rural communities, and offered incentives for over 500 rural carriers to provide faster broadband to over 1 million rural homes and businesses.

Pai also announced his intention to create the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund, which will provide $20.4 billion over the next decade to connect approximately four million rural homes and businesses to high-speed broadband, representing the FCC’s single biggest step yet to close the digital divide.

(Photo by Jim Bradley used with permission.)

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