Northpoint Addresses McCain Request, Critics


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Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
Las Vegas, Nevada
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Northpoint Technology released a statement that said it's working with John McCain, the Arizona Republican and chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, concerning developments with Multichannel Video Distribution and Data Service (MVDDS) and those associated with the company's BroadWave business.

"I am grateful for this opportunity to help clear the air on an issue of great importance to consumers of multichannel TV who are paying record prices and the millions of Americans in rural and underserved communities who still remain on the far side of the digital divide," said Sophia Collier, chair of Northpoint Technology.

Northpoint delivered a letter to McCain providing a list of original Broadwave affiliates and a description of the option arrangement the company entered into with the Livingston Group, Collier said. The company did not provide "competitively sensitive information" that's similarly not disclosed by competitors.

At issue with recent MVDDS developments are amendments contained in appropriations legislation aimed at MVDDS and auctions for the spectrum, set to take place at the Federal Communications Commission. There has been a lot of debate on the amendments, and critics have said the legislation aims to give Northpoint MVDDS licenses without a bidding process.

Collier said, "The identically worded amendments do one thing and one thing only: create a level playing field for licensing satellite companies and innovative new land-based providers that seek to share the same spectrum and compete against one another in the marketplace. That's it.

"This means that Northpoint, or any other MVDDS applicant, will simply get to play according to the same rulebook as satellite competitors," she added.

Collier said those who benefit from the legislation will be "American consumers, who have seen their cable rates skyrocket due to lack of head-to-head competition."

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