Washington -- The Coalition for
Free TV and Broadband, of which Sinclair is a member, has released a paper
detailing the $60 billion it says the U.S. Treasury would get if it left
spectrum in broadcasters' hands.
Sinclair has been arguing that rather than reclaim and
auction broadcast spectrum to wireless companies, the government could make
three times as much money by letting broadcasters provide a wireless
"overlay" service using its more efficient one-to-many delivery
The paper is an effort to quantify the superiority of using
broadcasters to handle heavy wireless traffic. "A Broadcast Overlay
service that is technically compatible with commercial wireless networks would
allow users to consume more data at a lower cost with a higher quality of
service," the paper argues.
The National Association of Broadcasters is not opposing the
auctions. Rather, the trade group is trying to ensure that they leave
broadcasters who remain in the business with sufficiently clear signals and identical
coverage areas to continue to compete in the digital age with services such as
mobile DTV and multicasting.
Sinclair and the coalition have taken a harder line. They
argue the incentive auction plan will "destroy" 2,000 TV stations,
with the government "confiscating" TV stations so the spectrum can be
turned over to wireless companies who already have "plenty" of
The coalition is encouraging supporters to contact their
legislators, including a separate listing of the deficit supercommittee that
could make the auctions part of its recommended buget deficit-reduction plan,
due at the beginning of next week.