FCC Issues License To Massage Data

Commission launches online tool to shed light on its licensing process
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The FCC has launched its new online License View tool, which
provides snapshots of the FCC's licensing process, including numerical
breakouts and pie charts.

The tool is part of the FCC's Data Innovation Initiative to reform
its data collection and dissemination process
in line with an Obama
administration goal of making government information accessible and useable

The FCC lists over three million licenses, with two million
currently active, and provides info on "the number of different licenses
across services, the number of licenses owned by particular entities, and how
many licenses are up for renewal in the future."

The information is in five databases and three forms, HTML pages,
raw data and API's (application programming interfaces), which will allow the
data to be re-used in various ways.

According to the new portal, the information
comes with a number of caveats, including that it "has not been relied
upon by the Commission to analyze the competitive marketplace or assessing the
spectrum holdings of service providers in any particular geographic area."

According to the data, Sprint Nextel is tops among commonly held
licenses with 45,840, followed by Clearwire with 12,832, AT&T with 8,808
and Verizon with 8,073. As an industry, broadcasters hold 30,390, plus about as
many more for support services like relays and studio-to-transmitter links.