MX equals mutually exclusive, and out of all the applications for FM translators that have been sitting around for years in advance of the proceeding that is making room for additions to the LPFM service, there are a lot of them. The FCC is encouraging competing applicants to resolve the situation and avoid an auction for the contested translator CP.
As a general rule, competing applicants are not allowed to communicate with one another, but in instances such as this the FCC has the flexibility to waive that restriction temporarily to afford the competitors a chance to reach one form of resolution or another.
There are two ways that MX applicants can reach resolution – via engineering or via a settlement in which only one applicant remains.
When there are more than two completing applicants, the FCC will accept partial settlements, but strongly encourages universal settlements under which all competitors agree to terms.
Engineering solutions need to be filed on an amended Form 349 Section I, the Section III-A Tech Box, and need not be universal, but must not create a new MX situation.
Proposed solutions are due at the FCC by 7/22/13, at which point competing applicants can no longer communicate certain information between one another.
The list of mutually exclusive FM translator applications can be seen here.