Google: Opening Up And Freeing The Airwaves

In the initial days of radio –and later television broadcasting– the airwaves in both Canada and the United States were treated as a public trust. In exchange for exclusive licenses to transmit content on public airwaves individuals, later companies, later corporations were usually (and still are) mandated to broadcast content that is in the public good. In Canada it’s primarily local news that is produced in a locat TV market.

These days it’s kind of sad in Canada to watch corporate interests in action at CRTC hearings where “profitable” broadcasters go to great lengths to try to lessen their commitments to the public good. Many even try to get out of their commitment as free over the air broadcasters (by not wanting to invest in HDTV transmitters) while wanting to maintain prime positioning on the cable TV dial.

Citing that more than three-quarters of radio airwaves (known as ‘white space’ spectrum) is completely unused, Google is leading an alliance that’s promoting consumer use of that vacant spectrum to send and pick up broadband. They have launched as site called Free the Airwaves and to my way of thinking this gives back the kind of thing that the airwaves should be used for… Long before the corporations came in and took over control of them. Video below;

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