Two LA television stations will share spectrum in pilot program

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Two LA broadcast television stations have agreed to act as guinea pigs for an experiment aimed at freeing up more airwaves for use in wireless broadband services.

KLCS, a public broadcaster owned by LA Unified School District, and KJLA, a small multi-lingual programmer, will share a single channel in a pilot program run by the Federal Communications Commission.

For viewers, both channels will appear in their normal places with their regular programming.

“There will be no impact to KJLA’s and KLCS’ viewers during this test,” according to the association’s press release.

Instead, it’s a test of the extent to which broadcast channels can be squeezed together on the electromagnetic spectrum without degrading visual quality.

KCRW’s Steve Chiotakis discussed the news with Harold Feld, Senior Vice President of Public Knowledge, a digital rights advocacy organization.