Now that he's held off another round of regulatory attacks from wireless
industry rivals, Bud Paxson is fighting an assault by fellow broadcasters.
The Association for Maximum Service Television (MSTV) is asking the Federal Communications Commission to deny
Paxson Communications COrp.'s request to relocate analog stations on channels 60
through 69 to the outlets' respective digital allotments at lower frequencies.
Because of differences between analog and digital signal footprints, nearly
all 11 requests by Paxson and another station owner, Hour of Harvest, violate
FCC distance-separation and interference rules, MSTV said.
Rather than ruling on the reassignments as a bloc, the FCC asked Paxson and
Hour of Harvest to apply for and justify waivers for each station individually.
MSTV said the commission should establish policies for these and similar reallotment
FCC rules allow stations that give up their right to broadcast on channels 60
through 69 to delay the switch to digital television on their remaining
allotment until Dec. 31, 2005.
They also have the right to request extensions if digital-TV-household penetration
remains below 70 percent.
Generally, broadcasters must go digital by May 1.
Channels 60 through 69 are scheduled to go on the block June