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I received this email.. Any one else?

February 24, 2012

Dear BoatU.S. Member:

Last summer boaters sent a clear message to the Federal Communications Commission – “Don’t Mess with GPS!" As you may remember, a private company, LightSquared, received preliminary FCC approval to offer a new cellular broadband service. Tests showed this service could significantly interfere with GPS signals.

Thanks to over 18,000 boaters who submitted comments, along with many other GPS users, the FCC required additional testing in the fall. (Thank you all for your help!) Last week, these tests revealed that the LightSquared’s network would interfere with GPS and that there are no practical fixes. As a result, the FCC has proposed to withdraw LightSquared's approval.(http://www.gps.gov/news/2012/02/lightsquared/)

The FCC has a new comment period (open to March 1) asking for the public’s opinion. Even if you wrote last summer, please take a few minutes now and write the FCC asking them to protect the GPS signal by saying “No” to LightSquared’s current proposal. Given this company’s tenacity over the last year, we want to make sure that boaters’ needs are remembered as the FCC makes their final decision.

Important points to make:
  • How do you use GPS in your life – on the water, on land, or in the air?
  • What would happen to your business/personal life if GPS became unavailable or unreliable?
  • Wireless broadband service is important, but it should not come at the expense of GPS.
  • All the studies show that LightSquared’s proposed network would cause interference and that there are no remedies.
  • Tell FCC that you rely on them to protect the integrity of the GPS signal and that you support their recommendation to stop LightSquared’s current proposal
You can submit comments directly to the FCC through their online comment form. (We regret we can’t streamline this process for you, but it is important enough we’re still asking for your help.) Here’s how:


  1. Click on this link for the FCC’s Electronic Comments Filing System (ECFS): http://apps.fcc.gov/ecfs/hotdocket/list
  2. Select “Proceeding Number 11-109.” It should be near the top of the list.
  3. In the designated boxes, enter your name and mailing address.
  4. In the box that says “Type in or paste your brief comments,” do so. Click “Continue”.
  5. A review page will load listing all of the information entered. If correct, click “Confirm.”
  6. If you have any trouble, you may contact the FCC ECFS Helpdesk at 202-418-0193 or email at [email protected]
Thank you for taking action to protect the integrity of the GPS system.

Margaret Podlich
President, BoatU.S.
[email protected]
703-461-2878 x8363
 

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I remember getting this info from Boat US. It seems the LightSquared founder is a big Democratic and Obama campaign doner from India. The political stuff was in Google News. This should be a big priority for all GPS users, not just boaters.
 

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I remember getting this info from Boat US. It seems the LightSquared founder is a big Democratic and Obama campaign doner from India. The political stuff was in Google News. This should be a big priority for all GPS users, not just boaters.
Not sure why you are inserting politics into this conversation, it really isn't relevant and doesn't belong in the offshore fishing forum, in my view. Phil Falcone of Harbinger Funds is the US investor spearheading Light Squared. Phil has made major donations to both the republican and democratic parties and seems to donate where his interest lie at the time rather than commiting to any one party.

Despite Phil's efforts, the FCC's recent ruling essentially shuts Light Squared down. It is highlly unlikely they will be able to over turn the FCC's ruling and I would have to imagine investors in his hedge fund which has lost significant assets over the last several years have a lot of additional patience for his foray into the telecom service provider space, as he appears to be in well over his head. Put differently, it appears to be just a matter of time before Light Squared is shut down and a thing of the past. Now back to fishing!
 

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It should have been in Dry Dock, you are correct. However I did not post the Boat US warning, someone else did. The political angle was from Google news and stated that the owner of LightSquared was from India and had made considerable contributions to the party currently in power. It did not mention any U.S. hedge fund involement that I can recall. I'm pleased to hear the issue appears dead and thanks for the update. And yes, back to fishing.
 
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