The author, smiling winningly Scott Raymond home

More on the broadcast flag

07 Nov 2003

MIT economist Arnold Kling has also written an open letter on the broadcast flag issue, his to Jack Valenti. My letter wasn’t to Valenti, because I have no reason to expect him to be anything but self-serving and deceitful, whereas the FCC is supposed to work for the common good.

Kling proposes an interesting idea: civil disobedience against the FCC.

I will not buy any device for the purpose of receiving HDTV. Instead, I will gladly purchase devices that will route packets via the Internet Protocol over that spectrum. In the neighborhood of my house, IP packets will take precedence over HDTV signals. […] I am talking about massive civil disobedience of the FCC. […] By re-allocating spectrum from HDTV to wireless IP, we can kill two legacy birds with one stone. We can hasten the demise of the phone companies—because with a wireless “last mile” the wireless Internet can replace traditional land lines and cell phones; and we can show Jack Valenti, the movie industry, and the television industry what it really means to “score a big victory for consumers.”

Read the rest.