FCC Will Provide More Notice Of Future Broadband Hearings

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The Federal Communications Commission will provide "greater advance notice" of upcoming broadband field hearings, according to an agency spokesman.

That came in response to complaints by media watchdog group Free Press that its field hearing on mobile broadband in San Diego Thursday was held with only 48 hours notice and, like others, during the day when most folks are at work, and with audience comment coming only from note cards.

"The process of developing the National Broadband Plan has been one of the most open in the Commission's history and has provided more opportunities for public participation than ever before," said the spokesman. "Attendance by the public at the FCC's 27 staff workshops and 4 hearings has been strong. Nearly 1,500 people have attended the staff workshops in person, and over 6,600 have attended online. However, we want to encourage even more public participation, and we intend to release a schedule of upcoming field hearings to provide greater advance notice to the public."

At the San Diego hearing, FCC chairman Julius Genachowski, in giving a shout-out to the hastily assembled hearing, pointed out that a "swat team" of staffers had put it together on short notice. He was in San Diego to speak at CTIA, the wireless association, about mobile broadband.

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