Tribal lands and the FCC White Spaces Order

Yesterday the FCC released its final decision on White Spaces (9/23/2010). The approved a proposal opens vast amounts of unused broadcast television airwaves for high-speed wireless broadband networks and other unlicensed applications.

Below are Selected quotes from Matthew Rantanan at the Southern California Tribal Digital Village.

“White Spaces Spectrum is going to finally be released to use for unlicensed. The Unanimous vote (5-0) in 2008 got the ball rolling with all of our hard efforts, and now another vote on how to govern the spectrum is pretty much a victory. It lets us use this invaluable airspace to get Internet to tribal homes in remote, geographically impossible to reach situations. All those folks on reservations like Campo, Santa Ysabel, Mesa Grande(SY Tract II), they all now have technology that will broadcast through trees and spread out areas that are nightmarish to hit with traditional unlicensed spectrum.

I’m very happy that the work that TDV has done has gotten noticed and even mentioned by one of the commissioners in their official statement about the spectrum decision.
All that hard work pays off.

Here is the press release that announces the decision.
http://www.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2010/db0923/DOC-301650A1.pdf

Here is Commissioner Mignon Clyburn’s Official statement that includes mention of Tribal Digital Village in the second paragraph.
(This is directly from our “petition for reconsideration” and the meeting I attended in DC at the Commission where we discussed this with all 5 commissioners.
http://www.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2010/db0923/FCC-10-174A5.pdf

Congratulations to all community wireless networks out there and especially tribes, this is a big step!”

Published by Traci L. Morris

Dr. Morris, the Director of the American Indian Policy Institute at Arizona State University is a member of the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma. Under her leadership, the AIPI has grown and diversified its service to Indian Country via an MOU formalizing a long-standing partnership with the Native American Finance Officers Association (NAFOA) and forming the Tribal Economic Leadership Program offering training in Tribal Economic Governance and Tribal Financial Management; access to Entrepreneurship training and tribal business support through Inno-Nations; and Economic Development Consulting; and, the formalization of the Institute via by-laws and an advisory board comprised of both internal ASU leadership and external tribal and non-tribal leadership. In her work at both ASU and prior, Morris has worked with Native American tribes; Tribal businesses; Native American non-profits; Native media makers, artists, and galleries; written a college-accredited curriculum in Native American new media; and has advocated for digital inclusion at the Federal Communications Commission and on Capitol Hill. Morris’s research and publications on Native American media and the digital divide is focused on Internet use, digital inclusion, network neutrality, digital and new media curriculums, digital inclusion and development of broadband networks in Indian Country. Her book, Native American Voices: A Reader, continues to be a primary teaching tool in colleges throughout the country. Dr. Morris is Affiliated Faculty at ASU's School for the Future of Innovation in Society, an Affiliate of ASU's Center for Gender Equity in Science and Technology, a Senior Sustainability Scholar at the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability, President of the Board of the Phoenix Indian Center, Board member of the Arizona American Indian Chamber of Commerce, and on the Advisory Council of the Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries and Museums. Formerly, Morris served member of the Advisory Board for the Department of Labor's Native American Employment and Training Council and served a two-year appointment (2014-2016 and 2010-2012) on the Federal Communications Commission's Consumer Advisory Committee. As an entrepreneur prior to her ASU appointment, Morris founded Homahota Consulting LLC, a national Native American woman-owned professional services firm working in policy analysis, telecommunications, education, and research assisting tribes in their nation-building efforts and working with Native Nations, tribal businesses and those businesses working with tribes. Morris has an M. A. and Ph.D. from the University of Arizona’s American Indian Studies, in addition to a B.A. in Liberal Arts from Colorado State University.

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