[opendtv] Re: FCC on VoIP

Oh, c'mon.  Lifeline internet access?  If you have that, then and only then
can you consider Lifeline VOIP.

John Willkie

-----Original Message-----
From: opendtv-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
[mailto:opendtv-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]On Behalf Of Manfredi, Albert E
Sent: Tuesday, September 07, 2004 1:20 PM
To: OpenDTV (E-mail)
Subject: [opendtv] Re: FCC on VoIP


John Golitsis wrote:

> A bit off the topic here, but I'm with Vonage now at home
> and I've set it up to automatically forward to my cell phone
> if the service is down for any reason. I really don't know
> why they aren't building small battery backup systems into
> VoIP phone adapters.  During the big power outage last year,
> cable TV continued working, so there doesn't seem to be a
> problem there.

Perhaps the cable company has already installed their backup
power, in anticipation of deploying telephone service. This
makes good sense.

Now check out the quotes below and tell me if cable companies
are held (or are going to be held) to these same requirements.
This is how services can become burdened with regulations.

Let's just assume for a moment that VoIP becomes a huge
success, displacing the incumbent ILECs (RBOCs, whatever).
Will these new services become equally burdened with these
requirmements, or does the "IP" moniker somehow grant them
dispensation even after a sizable fraction of the PSTN has
been shifted over to IP?

Bert


This is excerpted from

http://ftp.fcc.gov/Bureaus/Miscellaneous/News_Releases/2000/nrmc0025.html=


-----------------------------------------
The Lifeline program, created in 1985, provides a discount on
local telephone bills for low-income customers so that basic
local phone service is more affordable. Among the basic services
covered by the discount are voice grade access to the public
switch network, emergency services, and operator services.

For many customers, local phone bills, before any discount, are
about $20 a month. The current federal Lifeline program reduces
eligible customers' local phone bills by as much as $7 per month.
Many states provide additional discounts. Some states, like New
York, bring basic local service to as low as $1 a month.

[ ... ]

Like the successful E-rate program to wire schools and libraries
to the Internet, the Lifeline program is paid for out of the
FCC's Universal Service Fund, which is funded by an assessment on
carriers' interstate and international end-user telecommunications
revenues. This Lifeline proposal would increase the Universal
Service Fund by approximately four-tenths of one percent (0.4%).
Today, 5.6 million customers receive Lifeline service nationwide.
------------------------------------------

This is excerpted from

http://www.fcc.gov/wcb/universal_service/fcc97157/sec08.html

------------------------------------------
328. Third, as the Joint Board recommended, we conclude that
Lifeline consumers should have the benefit of certain basic
services and policies. We therefore find, as did the Joint Board,
that Lifeline service should include: single-party service, voice
grade access to the public switched telephone network (PSTN),
DTMF or its functional digital equivalent, access to emergency
services, access to operator services, access to interexchange
service, access to directory assistance, and toll limitation. We
also adopt the Joint Board's recommendation to prohibit
disconnection of Lifeline service for non-payment of toll charges
and service deposit requirements for customers who accept toll
limitation.=20

[ ... ]

342. The Joint Board recommended expanding Lifeline to every
state and requiring all eligible telecommunications carriers, as
defined in section 214(e), to offer Lifeline service.

[ ... ]

347. Carriers' Obligation to Offer Lifeline. We concur with the
Joint Board's conclusion and reasoning that, to increase
subscribership among low-income consumers, we should modify the
Lifeline program so that qualifying low-income consumers can
receive Lifeline service from all eligible telecommunications
carriers. Our determination arises from a concern that, in certain
regions of the nation, carriers may not offer Lifeline service
unless compelled to do so. In requiring all eligible
telecommunications carriers to offer Lifeline service to qualifying
low-income consumers, we make Lifeline part of our universal
service support mechanisms. We emphasize, however, that in imposing
this obligation, we are acting under our general authority in
sections 1, 4(i), 201, and 205 of the Act, as well as our authority
under section 254.
-------------------------------------------


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