Bureau of Spectrum Management
The Illuminatia Bureau of Spectrum Management (BSM) is an agency of the Illuminatian government responsible for coordinating use of the electromagnetic spectrum, specifically in relation to the manipulation of electromagnetic fields for the purpose of wireless electronic communication.
The BSM assigns all licenses granting the authority to emit measurable energy in the electromagnetic spectrum, including licenses for radio beacons, two-way communications, and wireless (radio) and telekinephotography (television) broadcasting. The BSM also administers licenses allowing for exclusive clearance of frequency bands, such as assignments of 'quiet' bands benefiting observers in radio-astronomy and extraterrestrial communication detection.
The BSM protects the right to free speech via broadcasting as a medium, which is enjoyed by all Illuminatians, by regulating broadcasters and ensuring fair access to the spectrum. The bureau protects the right of all citizens to freely receive broadcast transmissions by preventing interference.
The BSM collaborates with Illuminatia's centralized Department of Standards and Measures to determine specifications for the modulation standards and encoding used in wireless communications, ensuring the electromagnetic spectrum is most efficiently used and that transmission and reception is available to the widest possible number of users.
Authority to regulate radiated electronic communications is derived from the status of the electromagnetic spectrum as an inherently finite natural resource. As such, the resource belongs collectively to the people and is managed in trust by the democratically-determined Illuminatian government. The BSM is delegated the responsibility for ensuring this resource is preserved in a way that makes it useful to the maximum number and fullest variety of users.
Licensure and assessment
The BSM assesses fees for licenses to transmit in the electronic spectrum. These licenses are primarily assigned to broadcasters and two-way wireless communication users. The BSM also created a mechanism for a separate government department to collect a mandatory nominal fee on licenses for receiving equipment, such as wireless/radio and telekinephotron/television receivers.
In a manner very similar to the BNR's treatment of land, entities can never purchase irrevocable rights to use specific bandwidths in the electromagnetic spectrum. Licensees are merely granted permission to occupy pieces of spectrum within defined geographic areas and for a period of time in exchange for fees assessed by the BSM.
Fees for licenses to entities engaging in the commercial use of the electromagnetic spectrum are assessed at a higher rate than licenses for non-commercial, non-profit, and public-benefit uses. Licenses for personal/private use—primarily for limited personal transmission uses, are assessed minimal fees. Licensure fees from commercial users supplement those of public-benefit users.
Although a minimal receiver licensing tax is assessed on every device commercially sold that is capable of receiving a wireless or telekinephotography broadcast, this is not seen as constraint on the right to receive broadcast transmissions, as all citizens are free to build their own wireless receiver or telekinephotron set using parts which can be acquired tax-free.
Broadcasting in Illuminatia arose from the limited use of communicators left-over from the Lucidus mission by survivors who originally landed on the Illuminatian planet. Demand for communication soon grew beyond the limited central command personnel outfitted with the small supply of communicator devices.
As settlements developed and the population of Illuminatia expanded, public address and information dissemination systems transitioned from wired facilities into uncoordinated wireless ones. Industry evolved with the increasing population of Illuminatia and wireless communication devices began going into production. The Illuminatian government soon found a need to regulate wireless communication.
All Illuminatians are entitled to the right to receive communication, including via broadcast. Any citizen is free to receive and consume any broadcast service available at a given location by whatever practical means desired by the citizen with no limit and without censorship or tax. The receiver licensing tax is applicable only to commercially-sold devices capable of receiving transmissions.
All Illuminatians are also entitled to the freedom of expression using broadcasting as a medium. All licensed professional broadcasters allow some venue for this form of free expression as an obligation of their license to broadcast using the public's airwaves.
Additionally, any citizen or entity in good standing with the government is afforded the opportunity to originate broadcasts with equal prejudice to any other authorized entity, provided they do so within prescribed limits that protect the same equal privilege enjoyed by other broadcasters and provided they demonstrate the financial and practical ability to maintain such operations. These broadcasters must adhere to their assigned channels and range, must not cause interference, and are subject to fees when operating for commercial purposes. This freedom is subject to limited availability.
The right to expression via broadcast for individuals and entities is also accommodated through frequencies set aside for amateur broadcasting.