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NAB Deters Satellite Radio Battle On Local Services…Until Later

By | November 11, 2004

      The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) withdrew its “petition for declaratory ruling” that asked the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to stop XM Satellite Radio [XMSR] and Sirius Satellite Radio [SIRI] from providing local traffic and weather services. The reversal ended the process started by the NAB’s petition, and it leaves in place the rules and regulations that enable the U.S. satellite radio companies to provide the local weather and traffic services.

      The petition, filed by the NAB on April 14, led XM, the Consumer Electronics Association, the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Satellite Broadcast and Communications Association, and 25,000 XM customers to oppose the petition. That counterattack successfully claimed that prohibiting such local weather and traffic services would unconstitutionally deny valuable safety information to the public and would illegally modify the XM license.

      Chance Patterson, vice president of corporate affairs at XM, said the NAB’s change of course is a “complete vindication” of his company’s position that it complied with, and continues to comply with, FCC rules. NAB’s action validates that there are no content restrictions on XM.

      For more information on this development, read the Nov. 15 issue of Satellite News. To sign up for a free trial subscription to Satellite News, go to

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