"The United States is the innovation capital and content capital of the world," said Federal Communications Commissioner Meredith A. Baker as she endorsed the FCC's "National Broadband Plan." In her first public speech since being sworn in, Commissioner Baker stressed that the "Internet knows no borders."
"We set an example. Our policy choices are watched-and emulated-in many nations. Inconsistent or imprudent policy decisions at home can have significant policy ramifications abroad," she emphasized in at a Washington seminar sponsored by the Free State Foundation. In response to my question - noting Baker's background as a wireless industry lobbyist before becoming a Commerce Department official and now FCC member - about the role of wireless versus wired broadband service, Baker said she expects services will become "hybrid" combinations.
"The fastest-growing sector of America's broadband economy is wireless," she added, acknowledging the importance of spectrum access. Her comments raise even greater consternation about the future of over-the-air transmissions, including TV broadcasting. An earlier speaker at the seminar, the FCC Broadband Czar Blair Levin, had also raised the prospect that broadcast airwaves may become too valuable to use for old-fashioned TV transmission.