fcc-logo.gifThe Federal Communications Commissioners are all at the CES in Vegas. Many thought that the regulatory agency was there to be speakers on panels and to observe the forefront of consumer technology that promises to be introduced to the market in the near future, but today Sirius Buzz learned of the real reason behind the presence of the five commissioners at CES. A new and wonderful product for consumers that is so wondrous we are all wondering how we did not come up with the idea ourselves.


FCC Chairman Kevin Martin was joined by the other Commissioners toady to announce their much anticipated 180 Day Time Clock. The Time Clock promises absolutely nothing as it was purposefully designed to be a flexible tool.

"The flexibility of the 180 Day Time Clock allows for endless discussion and debate, and gives the partisan panel plenty of time and built in excuses as to why we can not make a decision." stated Commissioner Adelstein.

Commissioner McDowell disagreed with Adelstein stating that the 180 Day Time Clock does not allow for endless discussion and debate, but rather endless debate and discussion, but was quick to agree that a common feature is the built in excuse factor which seems to cross party lines.

The FCC describes the 180 Day Time Clock in the following manner:

"The timeline is intended to identify generally what tasks the agency needs to accomplish in order to complete its review in cases involving complex or difficult issues, the normal order in which these tasks can be most efficiently performed, and the time normally needed to complete them. Any such general timeline necessarily oversimplifies the process. Statutes and regulations require different procedures for different types of licenses or authorizations, and the circumstances of individual cases will differ (for example, the actions taken by other government agencies considering the antitrust, national security, or law enforcement issues relating to the transaction). The timeline should therefore be viewed as a flexible tool, not an effort to force the review of all diverse transactions into one inflexible mold. For these reasons, the timeline clock may need to be started and stopped several times during the process."

Commissioner Tate when asked about the features of the 180 Time Clock noted that she "enjoys the start and stop feature that can be used as often as necessary." Commissioner Copps agreed that the start and stop feature gives real potential to in effect stop time, thus giving the appearance of the Commission actually taking a shorter period of time to arrive at a decision than actually elapsed.

The Chairman of the Commission, Kevin Martin, stated that an oft overlooked feature of the clock is when it actually first starts. As an example Martin stated that while Sirius and XM had filed application with the FCC months earlier, that the FCC was able to start the clock later. Martin added that the graphical display on the 180 Day Time Clock stops at day 180.

While the Commissioners disagree on many issues, it appears that all five are in agreement that a 180 Day Time Clock that actually measures nothing is a great idea, and illustrative of our government in action. Crowds that gathered for the FCC announcement cheered as they all thought about things they can put off until tomorrow, or next week, or next month.

The above is a spoof. Quotes attributed to the members of the FCC Commission are not real. The 180 Day Time Clock does indeed exist and the description of the 180 Day Timeclock in this article is the actual description as supplied by the FCC.

Position - Long Sirius, Long XM