20100407

FCC : the end of regulation or the end of non-regulation ?

mot-bile 2010 - A regulator that fails to regulate may need some fixing.

After being awarded the right to deregulate broadband by a Supreme Court ruling in 2005 on the ground that it would not be a telecom service but an information service, the FCC allowed broadband subs to plug whatever hardware or software they pleased to their access, but after that ordered ISPs to fight against peer-to-peer abuses. Comcast logically sued and won the case at a federal court.

That same FCC has also been working on a much advertised National Broadband Plan which now appears to be left to its own devices.

The only way out of this farcical situation would be for lawmakers to restore some regulatory power, a move that could prove unpopular for partisans of freedom on the liberal front (no regulation for the internet : that's fascism) as well as on the libertarian side (no regulation whatsoever : that's socialism). If Obama thought he was done with ideological battles between health care madness and financial reforms, here's yet another hot potato to catch before mid-term elections.

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