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XM: NAB reading too much into patent - Broadcasting & Cable

XM: NAB reading too much into patent

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XM Satellite Radio Holdings Inc. has no plans to offer local radio
programming, a spokesman said Tuesday.

The National Association of Broadcasters Monday released a copy of a
patent XM has received to insert local programming into its satellite-delivered
radio feeds.

The NAB has repeatedly told the Federal Communications
Commission it is concerned that XM is going to use its network of terrestrial
repeaters to deliver local programming to customers.

That
would put XM in competition with local radio broadcasters, which the NAB wants
to avoid.

'The NAB
is demanding something that we agree with and that we have consistently
agreed with going all the way back to 1997,' XM spokesman Charles Robbins
said.

'We are strictly a national satellite-radio service. Coming up with patents
is what scientists do -- when they discover something, they patent it.'

Radio broadcaster Bill O'Shaughnessy -- who has been
fighting hard against XM's attempts to place terrestrial repeaters in
Westchester County, N.Y. -- said that if satellite-radio companies begin to
offer local programming, it 'could unquestionably have a devastating impact on
free over-the-air traditional broadcasting as we know it.'

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