Representatives from Shure, the Grand Ole Opry, the Professional Audio Manufacturer's Alliance (PAMA), the Sports Video Group (SVG), PRG Audio, Springboard Productions, Masque Sound, Sound Associates and others participated in a series of meetings in Washington, D.C., with legislators and FCC commissioners and staff. Their mission was to raise awareness of the significant interference risk posed by the proposed entry of unlicensed wireless devices into broadcast TV bands.
The group highlighted the integral role of wireless audio systems in today's entertainment, sports and news productions, and the need for protected frequencies to ensure ongoing production of broadcast and live event production. Concerns about proposed legislation from Sens. John Kerry (D-MA) and John Sununu (R-NH) were specifically expressed. This legislation would permit unlicensed wireless devices to operate within the white band spaces between active TV channels, which would be a major boon to the proliferation of broadband Internet access.
The message being delivered to legislators was essentially a reminder of the need for dedicated frequencies for the production industry. The potential for interference to wireless microphones, intercoms, in-ear monitors and other production equipment would cripple the production of high-profile live events such as the Super Bowl, Broadway shows and Grammy Awards. The group's goal was to raise awareness of the industry's need for viable spectrum space, which is unaddressed in any pending FCC rules changes and legislation.
According to Jeff Krull, Shure VP of product development, the meetings were designed to highlight the group's contention that the public interest will be best served by the protection of wireless microphone systems from unlicensed devices.
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