Voices

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Obama Plan Would Double Available Wireless Spectrum

In a move that would provide some breathing room for burgeoning commercial wireless traffic, President Obama plans to scrounge up 500 megahertz of fresh spectrum for auction, a move that would double the available spectrum over the next 10 years. Today the president is ordering a survey asking federal agencies and private licensees–like broadcast and cable companies–to identify any chunks of spectrum they can spare or share. Proceeds from the auction would go toward improving public safety communications systems.

For more on the administration’s perspective on U.S. broadband needs, watch this video of Walt Mossberg interviewing Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski at the D: All Things Digital conference earlier this month.


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As long as the newspaper was a bundle, no one ever had to care that people were buying it for radically different reasons. But once you go online, and people can unbundle things, where you can traffic directly to a story without going through the home page or any of the rest of it, suddenly what it — the individual choices made by individual readers come to matter a lot.

— Clay Shirky, on NPR’s Talk of the Nation with Neal Conan