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Sinclair: Broadcasting Is Answer to Wireless Traffic Needs

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 system.

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," it argues.

The National Association of Broadcasters is not opposing the auctions, instead trying to insure that they leave broadcasters who remain in the business with sufficiently clear signals and sufficiently identical coverage areas to continue to compete in the digital age with services like 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 spectrum.

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 deficit reduction plan, due at the beginning of next week.