New Report Says Net Neutrality Regulations Could Cost up to 500,000 Jobs and $80 Billion per Year in Lost GDP

I agree with the premise of the report that net neutrality as it is currently defined will stifle competition.  AT&T has publicly stated that it will halt U-verse deployments if net neutrality is passed.  Verizon has already capped its FiOS project.  The warning signs are already there.  The Internet is a vital component to the U.S. economy as it transitions from a manufacturing-based to knowledge-based economy.  Any potential threat to its vitality must be stopped.  There are several assumptions in this study that I believe are overstated or flawed.  Even if they are corrected, the result will be that as the FCC has defined net neutrality, jobs will be lost in our economy.  The Internet must remain open and accessible for all users despite methods of access.  On the other hand, the FCC must not be heavy-handed in regulating it as not to impede innovation.  All of these points bring me back to my assertion that open-access municipal networks will go a long way to continue the freedom and innovation of the Internet.

Broadband experts warn of depressed network investment, limits on new business models, and deterred rollout of broadband-enabled services

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)– According to research released today from Charles M. Davidson, director of The Advanced Communications Law & Policy Institute at New York Law School, and Bret Swanson, president of technology research firm Entropy Economics, new regulations for providers of broadband Internet service could result in the loss of hundreds of thousands of jobs. The new Internet regulations, the report estimates, could also reduce U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by tens of billions of dollars per year. The report, “Net Neutrality, Investment & Jobs: Assessing the Potential Impacts of the FCC’s Proposed Net Neutrality Rules on the Broadband Ecosystem,” examines the extent of likely damages to investment, jobs, and U.S. GDP resulting from the implementation of the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) proposed net neutrality regulations.

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The iPhone, Net Neutrality and the FCC

Mr. Kessler hits the “nail on the head” by stating that competition will increase broadband penetration and solve net neutrality issues, but threatening regulation is not the way to achieve his goals.  Only by introducing more service providers in each market will the objectives be achieved.  The “beat them with a stick” approach does not work most of the time.

Regulatory uncertainty is spoiling the rollout of Steve Jobs’s latest inspirations.There’s a better way to spur broadband competition.

AT&T’s Picturephone, shown at the 1964 World’s Fair, was a huge flop. Apple’s new iPhone 4, announced this week, has a front-facing camera for video chats. It might succeed, except that AT&T isn’t providing enough bandwidth capacity.

First, the company won’t allow two-way video to work over its data network. Second, AT&T just made bandwidth-intensive video expensive by dropping iPhone and iPad’s $30 per month unlimited data plans and replacing them with a two-tiered plan of $15 a month for under 200 megabyte usage or $25 for two gigs. Not that I have a problem with AT&T charging me or the 2% of its customers who are heavy data users. I can always sign up with a competitor. Oh, wait. There are none. AT&T has an exclusive contract with Apple.

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FCC Seeks to Reclassify Broadband as Regulated

This article is a thorough review of the different options to create and enforce net neutrality.  The bottom line is that we need to rewrite this country’s telecommunications laws, but the current Congress is not up to that task.

Owen D. Kurtin | The National Law Journal

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On March 16, the Federal Communications Commission issued its National Broadband Plan, a compendium of lofty goals for extending broadband penetration throughout the United States and targeting specific industries and sectors, such as health care and education. As part of the plan, the FCC explicitly supported the principle of “net neutrality,” that of ensuring that internet backbone providers may not impose premium pricing or discriminatory access upon content and applications providers that use their networks, no matter how heavy their use of the available bandwidth.

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Congress rebukes FCC on Net neutrality rules

The bickering begins over who has control to regulate something that isn’t broken yet.  All three branches of government are now involved to solve a problem that has yet to be a concern.  Why don’t we wait until there is a problem before we create more regulation and most likely destroy a growth engine in our economy.

The Federal Communications Commission’s plan to impose Net neutrality regulations just became much more difficult to pull off.

A bipartisan group of politicians on Monday told FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, in no uncertain terms, to abandon his plans to impose controversial new rules on broadband providers until the U.S. Congress changes the law.

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Scream 2 (The Broadband Sequel) Now Playing At The FCC?

By Art Brodsky on May 20, 2010 – 4:16pm

This is a familiar time of year for TV fans.  It’s the end of the season for original programs and the start of summer reruns for many. Some shows are better the second time around, but some lose their punch, or should, if you see them again and again.

For the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), this summer’s big rerun is being brought to you by AT&T, which first broadcast its blockbuster “shock and awe” show last fall.  Now AT&T is doing it again.  While the FCC may have been spooked by this exercise in intimidation the first time around, there’s no excuse for the Commission panicking, screaming, or getting weak in the knees again.
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FCC Chairman Genachowski expected to leave broadband services deregulated

Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, May 3, 2010

The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission has indicated he wants to keep broadband services deregulated, according to sources, even as a federal court decision has exposed weaknesses in the agency’s ability to be a strong watchdog over the companies that provide access to the Web.

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Google takes diplomatic route on Net neutrality

by Marguerite Reardon

In Washington, D.C., Google is learning there’s nothing wrong with a little diplomacy.

In a Federal Communications Commission filing earlier this week, Google reiterated its support for Net neutrality regulation, but it didn’t take sides in the ongoing debate over whether the FCC should reclassify broadband services to help ensure the agency has the authority to enforce that regulation.

The FCC’s authority was challenged earlier this month when a federal appeals court sided with Comcast, ruling that the FCC had no legal basis for censuring the company for violating its Net neutrality principles.

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