Congressional Research Service Reports - 394 Matching Results

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Digital Television: An Overview

Description: Digital television (DTV) is a new television service representing the most significant development in television technology since the advent of color television in the 1950s. DTV can provide sharper pictures, a wider screen, CD-quality sound, better color rendition, and other new services currently being developed. This report discusses a key issue in the Congressional debate over the digital transition has been addressing the millions of American over-the-air households whose existing analog televisions will require converter boxes in order to receive digital signals when the analog signal is turned off.
Date: May 5, 2006
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

An Emergency Communications Safety Net: Intergrating 911 and Other Services

Description: The 9/11 Commission Report recommended that 911 call centers — also called Public Safety Answering Points, or PSAPs — be included in planning for emergency responses.1 Congress, which has since 1999 passed two bills to further the deployment of 911, is reviewing ways to expand 911 capabilities and make it more accessible and effective. Congress is also evaluating ways to improve emergency alerts2 and interoperable communications for public safety.3 Operational convergence of emergency communications seems to many to be inevitable, a question of “when,” not “if.” This report deals primarily with 911 and its recent history. It also summarizes some of the proposals that would improve 911 through new approaches and integration with other services.
Date: May 5, 2006
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Spectrum Management: Auctions

Description: This report discusses the radio frequency spectrum that is used for all forms of wireless communications, including cellular telephony, paging, personal communications service, radio and television broadcast, telephone radio relay, aeronautical and maritime radio navigation, and satellite command and control.
Date: April 6, 2006
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The FCC's "a la Carte" Reports

Description: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has released two reports on a la carte pricing of cable television networks that reach contradictory conclusions. The purpose of this report is to explain how these two reports reached differing conclusions and to analyze the different assumptions and calculations used in each.
Date: March 30, 2006
Creator: Goldfarb, Charles B
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The FCC's "a la Carte" Reports

Description: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has released two reports on a la carte pricing of cable television networks that reach contradictory conclusions. The purpose of this report is to explain how these two reports reached differing conclusions and to analyze the different assumptions and calculations used in each.
Date: March 30, 2006
Creator: Goldfarb, Charles B
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Data Security: Protecting the Privacy of Phone Records

Description: This report discusses recent legislative and regulatory efforts to protect the privacy of customer telephone records, and efforts to prevent the unauthorized use, disclosure, or sale of such records by data brokers. In addition, it provides a brief overview of the confidentiality protections for customer information established by the Communications Act of 1934.
Date: February 28, 2006
Creator: Stevens, Gina Marie & Rainson, Tara Alexandra
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Digital TV Transition: A Brief Overview

Description: This report briefly discusses key points about the digital TV transition process: background, the impact on broadcasting, spectrum policy, and recent legislative activity. The transition has two major policy components: (1) how best to move television broadcasters and their viewers to digital technology, and (2) radio frequency spectrum management and allocation. The public interest goals for these paths are not well aligned, presenting Congress with difficult choices for completing the transition.
Date: February 15, 2006
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G. & Moore, Linda K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

An Emergency Communications Safety Net: Integrating 911 and Other Services

Description: The 9/11 Commission Report recommended that 911 call centers — also called Public Safety Answering Points, or PSAPs — be included in planning for emergency responses.1 Congress, which has since 1999 passed two bills to further the deployment of 911, is reviewing ways to expand 911 capabilities and make it more accessible and effective. Congress is also evaluating ways to improve emergency alerts2 and interoperable communications for public safety.3 Operational convergence of emergency communications seems to many to be inevitable, a question of “when,” not “if.” This report deals primarily with 911 and its recent history. It also summarizes some of the proposals that would improve 911 through new approaches and integration with other services.
Date: January 30, 2006
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Communications Act Revisions: Selected Issues for Consideration

Description: This report provides an overview of selected topics which the 109th Congress may address in its examination of telecommunications issues. The issues included in this report cover: broadband Internet regulation and access; broadcast indecency; digital television transition; Federal Communications Commission structure and reform; intercarrier compensation; media ownership rules; municipal deployment of broadband; public safety communications, the “savings clause” and monopoly issues; spectrum auctions; and universal service fund reform.
Date: January 23, 2006
Creator: Gilroy, Angele A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Wireless Technology and Spectrum Demand: Advanced Wireless Services

Description: Advances in wireless telecommunications technology are converging with Internet technology to foster new generations of applications and services. Presently, the United States and other countries are moving to third-generation (3G) and fourth-generation mobile telephony. The defining feature of these technologies is that transmission speeds are significantly faster than prevailing technologies. A related trend is the growth in use of Wi-Fi (wireless fidelity) and WiMAX (an industry designation for a specific broadband standard). This report describes various legislation relating to this expansion and ongoing telecommunications development.
Date: January 20, 2006
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Digital Television: An Overview

Description: Digital television (DTV) is a new television service representing the most significant development in television technology since the advent of color television in the 1950s. DTV can provide sharper pictures, a wider screen, CD-quality sound, better color rendition, and other new services currently being developed. A successful deployment of DTV requires: the development by content providers of compelling digital programming; the delivery of digital signals to consumers by broadcast television stations, as well as cable and satellite television systems; and the widespread purchase and adoption by consumers of digital television equipment. A key issue in the Congressional debate over the digital transition has been addressing the millions of American over-the-air households whose existing analog televisions will require converter boxes in order to receive digital signals when the analog signal is turned off.
Date: January 6, 2006
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Constitutionality of Applying the FCC's Indecency Restriction to Cable Television

Description: Various federal officials have spoken in favor of extending the Federal Communication Commission’s indecency restriction, which currently applies to broadcast television and radio, to cable and satellite television. This report examines whether such an extension would violate the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of speech.
Date: December 1, 2005
Creator: Cohen, Henry
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Spectrum Management: Auctions

Description: This report discusses the radio frequency spectrum that is used for all forms of wireless communications, including cellular telephony, paging, personal communications service, radio and television broadcast, telephone radio relay, aeronautical and maritime radio navigation, and satellite command and control.
Date: November 4, 2005
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Deficit Reduction and Spectrum Auctions: FY2006 Budget Reconciliation

Description: The Congressional Budget Office has informally estimated a value of $10 billion from auction proceeds for these commercial channels; many believe the amount could be higher. Broadcasters are holding this valuable spectrum (channels 52-69) but would be required to relinquish it after the transition to digital television (DTV) is achieved. Without a hard deadline, the transition to digital television has been delayed and the spectrum has not been made available for other uses. Congress anticipates applying some of the proceeds received from auctions of the spectrum to be cleared to help meet deficit-reduction goals passed in H.Con.Res. 95.
Date: October 20, 2005
Creator: Moore, Linda K. & Kruger, Lennard G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Communications Act Revisions: Selected Issues for Consideration

Description: This report provides an overview of selected topics which the 109th Congress may address in its examination of telecommunications issues. The issues included in this report cover: broadband Internet regulation and access; broadcast indecency; digital television transition; Federal Communications Commission structure and reform; intercarrier compensation; media ownership rules; municipal deployment of broadband; public safety communications, the “savings clause” and monopoly issues; spectrum auctions; and universal service fund reform.
Date: September 19, 2005
Creator: Gilroy, Angele A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Open Access Publishing and Citation Archives: Background and Controversy

Description: This report begins with an inventory of basic information: definitions and guides to histories of the growth of open access publishing and citation archives and descriptions of selected major open access activities. It moves on to summarize major points of difference between proponents and opponents of nongovernmental open access publishing and databases, and then highlights federal, including National Institutes of Health (NIH), open access activities and contentious issues surrounding these developments. The report also briefly describes open access developments in the United Kingdom (where a number of governmental and nongovernmental initiatives have occurred) and in the international arena. Finally, controversial issues which could receive attention in the 109th Congress are summarized.
Date: September 12, 2005
Creator: Knezo, Genevieve J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Trade in Services: The Doha Development Agenda Negotiations and U.S. Goals

Description: This report is designed to assist Congress to understand and monitor progress of the negotiations and the major issues that the negotiators are addressing. The report provides a brief background section on the significance of services to the U.S. economy. It then explains briefly the General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) and the structure and agenda of the services negotiations in the DDA round, including U.S. objectives in the negotiations. The report concludes with a status report on the negotiations and an examination of potential results.
Date: September 12, 2005
Creator: Cooper, William H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Emergency Communications: The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and All-Hazard Warnings

Description: The Emergency Alert System (EAS) is one of several federally managed warning systems. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) jointly administers EAS with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), in cooperation with the National Weather Service (NWS), an organization within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The NOAA/NWS weather radio system has been upgraded to an all-hazard warning capability. This report summarizes the technology and administration of EAS and the NOAA/NWS all-hazard network, and some of the key proposals for change
Date: September 2, 2005
Creator: Moore, Linda K. & Reese, Shawn
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department