On October 16, 2008 the FCC released a Public Notice requesting comments on an October 3, 2008 petition for rulemaking by Sounddec LLC for the establishment of a new service in the FM radio band called "Event Radio Services" (ERS). Comments are due by November 17, 2008. A copy of Sounddec's petition can be found here.
Sounddec describes ERS as a service that allows technology to "dramatically change" the amount and quality of information made available to those attending live events, such as sports events. For example, ERS would provide fans at a game the opportunity to listen to the live radio play-by-play broadcast of a game.
The petition also outlines a proposed regulatory framework for licensing ERS using a certification and event pre-approval process, and proposes power level requirements and interference protection to FM stations. Importantly for FM broadcasters, the petition contemplates operation on second and third adjacent channels at a power level (10 watts) similar to that of LPFM stations. The typical ERS license would be a temporary one, lasting for the duration of the relevant event.