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FCC Slates More Broadband Workshops - Broadcasting & Cable

FCC Slates More Broadband Workshops

Levin says discussions planned for September, plus fall field hearings
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FCC broadband advisor Blair Levin said Thursday there will be "lots more [broadband] workshops" in September, plus fall field hearings, as the FCC prepares its broadband plan. But he also said he was concerned about the imbalance between resources for getting that plan done and broadband demand.

That came in a status report to the full commission Thursday.

Levin said it has likely been the busiest August ever for FCC staffers.

There have already been 16 broadband workshops. New workshops will include discussions of the role of content, cyber security, civil rights and more.

The workshops are part of the FCC's national broadband rollout plan, which is due to Congress Feb. 17.

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski praised Levin and his team for using innovative tools like the workshops and new media to collect info, saying it was serving the agency very well.

Among the challenges of the broadband plan, said Levin, are the scope of the challenge, lack of data, and the imbalance of the resources to achieve universal broadband and the demand for it. He says the H1N1 virus could highlight that imbalance, eventually meaning that more people will have to commute from home, and kids may have to be educated at home as well.

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