[opendtv] Re: Watch FCC's Ajit Pai dress up as Santa and wield a lightsaber to mock net neutrality rules
- From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
- To: "opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Tue, 19 Dec 2017 04:18:22 +0000
John Shutt wrote:
Courts do the right thing? Congress failed to reclassify broadband data
as Title II common carriers,
John strikes back. I'm afraid you're missing that Congress played no part in
any of this. All had been well defined in the 1996 telecom act, and the yahoos
keep lying about it.
"Congress codified that distinction in the 1996 Telecommunications Act.
Congress dubbed providers of basic telecommunications infrastructure
'telecommunications services,' and gave the Federal Communications Commission
broad authority over them. In contrast, 'information services' were largely
exempt from regulation.
"How did the FCC interpret those rules?
"Initially, the DSL broadband services offered by companies like Verizon were
classified as telecom services, subjecting them to common carrier regulation.
At the same time, online services like AOL and Yahoo were classified as
information services, which exempted them from most regulations."
Logical, according to the definitions written in the 1996 telecom act. I
already posted them here. The "information service" is web sites, users of the
telecom. But at the very beginning of the broadband era, when people still
thought of ISPs as dialup users of the telecoms, the definitions might have
been confusing. Broadband service changed that, as ISPs were no longer reached
via telecom lines. And hardly confusing today. Then the article continues:
"But the market was changing rapidly. Cable companies started offering phone
service and Internet access. The phone and cable companies argued that, now
that they were competing with each other, it didn't make sense to impose
regulations that were intended to deal with monopolies.
"So cable companies convinced the FCC to classify their new broadband Internet
services as 'information services' under the law. A few years later, the FCC
reclassified DSL as an 'information service' too. That effectively deregulated
the market by exempting the firms from a range of requirements that would have
otherwise applied to them."
That was the mistake, done as an expedient, and it didn't matter yet. But even
so, OF COURSE the cable companies were local monopolies, just as the telcos
were, and OF COURSE the cable companies were now providing a telecom service.
As broadband providers, they weren't web sites. They were telecom, as the FCC
had always defined (advanced) telecom services. I quoted that too. Telecom is
telecom, perfectly reasonable to be classified as such. But, in 2002:
"In a Declaratory Ruling adopted today [March 14, 2002], the FCC concluded that
cable modem service is properly classified as an interstate information service
and is therefore subject to FCC jurisdiction. The FCC determined that cable
modem service is not a 'cable service' as defined by the Communications Act."
Guess what, John. It was THE FCC that made this mistake in classification, not
Congress! Okay, they at least got that last bit right - indeed, cable modem
service is not a cable service. Nothing like it.
"The FCC also said that cable modem service does not contain a separate
'telecommunications service' offering and therefore is not subject to common
And this is nonsensical jibberish. The cable modem is connected to a telecom
service just as a DSL modem is. The FCC had no trouble understanding that DSL
service was a telecom service, for years prior. So now they went the wrong way,
to even out the playing field, but no big shakes yet. It was only 2002. No
conflicting interests yet.
so in 2015 Obama carried out his threat to do so with his pen and his phone.
He directed the FCC to make the change. Pai simply undid what Obama's FCC did.
The FCC is hardly "overstepping its authority" when it fixes its own mistake,
John. Congress played no part in declaring broadband service an information
service. In 2015, PEOPLE, not just "Obama," got thoroughly fed up with the
monopolistic broadband providers. Millions of people, John. Tom Wheeler tried
to mandate neutrality under Title I, but was told he couldn't. Had to
reclassify first, fixing the FCC's earlier mistake.
You want net neutrality? Go tell congress to pass some legislation,
Should be no need! The FCC had already fixed *its own* mistake. Congress
already defined information and telecom services in 1996, and nothing has
changed in that regard.
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