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To: rfi@contesting.com
Subject: [RFI] WSJ & BPL
From: W0UN -- John Brosnahan <shr@swtexas.net>
Date: Wed, 24 Mar 2004 09:51:30 -0600
List-post: <mailto:rfi@contesting.com>
For the record--I did respond to Ken Brown's WSJ article.  It is
not a particularly great reply, but I hope I covered some the salient
points in a relatively friendly and helpful manner.  I have not yet
heard from him!    ;-)

--John  W0UN


Hi, Ken--

I am sure you will get a LOT of mail about your story and most of
it from the ham community, of which I am a member.

But your story DOES sound like a handout from the power company,
with no mention at ALL of the other groups who feel that BPL
technology is not appropriate for many reasons.

You should research how many countries have played with BPL
and then REJECTED the technology because it caused interference
with many other technologies that also use the HF spectrum.

BTW  This technology is called PLC in Europe--doing a search on PLC
will add to your knowledge.  Ever wonder why the name was CHANGED?

And you should do some research on how many government
agencies (not just hams) have also protested about the technology.
For instance the military and homeland security have raised
serious concerns about BPL to name just a few.

And you should look at the financial issues with this technology.
It HAS been studied before and a little google searching will
help you find it.   The electric utilities have a poor technology
that is years late compared to cable, telephone DSL, WiFi, etc.
They are trying to make some quick bucks in a field that has
already been well-established and better-served by more appropriate
technologies.  And in the process of the utility companies trying
to get involved with "sexy" new technology they have failed miserably
in maintaining there core business--of power distribution.

As a purveyor of financial information (the WSJ, right) you SHOULD
be warning your readers about the potential losses they could
sustain when the utilities fail at finding a niche large enough to
support their inappropriate technology.

Here is your chance to do some GOOD reporting and dig into
the BPL issues and show your readers an unbiased story that
incorporates the concerns of a lot of government agencies, has
failed the tests in a number of European countries, and could well
be the boondoggle of this decade.

Good luck on doing your homework and I would be happy to
help you in any way I can.  Just don't do a narrow story that points
at a single group and think you are doing a good story about the

Go to the FCC web site and see just what agencies have expressed
concern and what countries have already dumped this inappropriate
technology and then try to protect the investors of this country from
yet another Montana Power style rip off.  I read the WSJ for sound financial
advice and this article is disingenuous.


John Brosnahan
Signal Hill Research LLC
45066 FM 187
Vanderpool, TX  78885


------------Notice the words "CHORUS of federal organizations" below-------------

<http://www.dslreports.com/shownews/36294>FEMA Cites BPL Concerns
<http://www.dslreports.com/shownews/36294>Broadband over powerline deployment cautioned
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) joins the chorus of federal organizations concerned about broadband via-power line interference. The agency recently expressed "grave concerns" that the technology could impair the group's crisis time abilities. FEMA filed <http://gullfoss2.fcc.gov/prod/ecfs/retrieve.cgi?native_or_pdf=pdf&id_document=6515292045>comments on December 4 in response to the FCC's BPL notice of inquiry, <http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2003/12/08/1/?nc=1>reports the ARRL. According to FEMA, BPL could "severely impair FEMA's mission-essential HF radio operations in areas serviced by BPL technology." The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) also recently filed their <http://www.ntia.doc.gov/ntiahome/fccfilings/2003/bplcomments_08132003.htm>own comments, urging the FCC to "move forward expeditiously". For backstory, Broadband Reports has <http://www.dslreports.com/sitesearch/News/BPL>often explored broadband over power-lines and the potential interference to amateur radio hobbyists and emergency communications.

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