FCC OKs Fee-Based Broadcast-Data Service

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Dotcast Inc. won approval Monday to embed data services into the analog
signals of every cooperating local TV station (including hundreds of low-power
stations) in the country.

Armed with Federal Communications Commission approval, Silicon Valley-based
Dotcast is planning to move ahead with an off-air service capable of offering
movies, music on-demand, broadband Internet services and distance learning.

A Dotcast attorney said cable operators are not required to carry the service
under normal TV must-carry laws.

In approving Dotcast, the FCC noted that the fee-based service will create a
new revenue stream for TV stations. Dotcast told the FCC public TV stations
intend to rely on the revenue to help fund their digital-TV
transitions.

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