‘What’s Hot’ List 9/11/15

What’s Hot List: 9/11/15

Mark Jamison and Roslyn Layton: FCC regulations should be free of politics

(The Gainesville Sun 9/6/15)

When it comes to Internet regulation, doing something is no substitute for doing the right thing.

While the notion of ”just do it” has appeal in sports, it’s not necessarily a great idea in telecom regulation. A case in point is the recent Federal Communications Commission (FCC) decision to adopt so-called open internet or net neutrality rules.


Report: Former FCC Commissioner McDowell expects legislation to free up more spectrum

(Fierce Wireless 9/3/15)

Former Republican FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell thinks senior members of the Commerce Committees in both the House and Senate will introduce legislation, perhaps by the end of this month, to free up more spectrum for auction that is currently held by government agencies.

McDowell disclosed his views yesterday in a conference call with reporters, according to a Broadcasting & Cable report, and said his information was based on sources he had spoken to in Congress. McDowell is currently a partner at the law firm Wiley Rein, which has a number of wireless carrier clients, and McDowell, like almost every FCC commissioner in the last five or six years, has pushed hard to free up more airwaves for wireless use.


Judgment Day for the FCC’s Latest Net Neutrality Folly
(Forbes 9/9/2015)

The FCC’s landmark “net neutrality” order is under serious legal threat, challenged in a case joined by a wide range of industry participants and outside legal, economics, and technical experts.  The FCC will submit its own brief next week, and oral arguments in the lawsuit before a D.C. federal appellate court are now scheduled for early December.

Opposition to the FCC’s third effort to annoint itself as the sole regulator of markets for broadband Internet access has drawn from a much broader group of opponents than two previous attempts, both of which were rejected by the court.


The FTC is cracking down on video makers who don’t disclose who’s paying the bills

(Washington Post- The Switch Blog 9/2/2015)

The average American watches around 14 hours of online video per month. But how much do we know about who’s paying for all of it?

The Federal Trade Commission on Wednesday announced it will settle with Machinima, an entertainment company that produces content for gamers, for not being clear about how some of its videos were being funded. According to the FTC complaint, Machinima did not properly disclose that some videos were paid for by Starcom MediaVest Group, an ad agency hired by Microsoft to promote the Xbox One. The agency said that a “small group of influencers” were paid thousands of dollars to create endorsement videos for the console and video games, but were not told to disclose where that money came from.


3 Ways Verizon’s new streaming app, Go90, promises to set itself apart
(Washington Post- The Switch Blog 9/8/2015)

Go90, Verizon’s long-awaited answer to the streaming video wars, is coming this week — and compared to your garden-variety online app, this online service is going to look very different from what you’re probably familiar with. Here are three things that make Verizon’s offering stand out from the others.

The biggest departure from today’s major streaming apps is that Verizon’s won’t charge you a monthly fee. Instead, Go90 will try going advertising-only. It’s not totally clear that this business model will work, but the company is hoping its recent acquisition of AOL’s online ad technology will help it get enough views to support the service.



Windstream says FCC Lifeline broadband provision should be technology neutral
(Fierce Telecom 9/8/2015)
Windstream said it supports the FCC’s proposal to realign the Lifeline program by diverting more attention, but said that the rules should not favor one technology — wireline or wireless — over another.

Consumers have a number of fixed and mobile broadband options, all of which include various speeds and usage allowances. Lifeline program recipients can chose from a host of traditional providers like Windstream and larger incumbent telcos and wireless operators like AT&T (NYSE: T), Sprint (NYSE: S), and Verizon (NYSE: VZ).


Frontier says sharing West Va. dark fiber network with Citynet would chill investments
(Fierce Telecom 9/8/2015)
Frontier told the West Virginia Public Service Commission that it should not be required to share dark fiber facilities with competitive provider Citynet, claiming that it would chill overall fiber network investments in the state.

Citing the FCC’s Open Internet order issued in February, Frontier said that the telco does not have any obligation to share fiber with competitors like Citynet, which could use the infrastructure to deliver services to their business and residential customers.

AT&T leverages CAF-II to extend 10 Mbps broadband in rural Louisiana

(Fierce Telecom 9/8/2015)

AT&T (NYSE: T) is leveraging a portion of money it accepted from the second phase of the FCC’s Connect America Fund (CAF-II) to bring broadband to nearly 75,000 rural homes and businesses in Louisiana.

The service provider said it would receive about $28 million annually over the next six years to meet the FCC’s CAF commitment in the state.

Using a mix of broadband wireless and traditional wireline facilities, AT&T will deliver up to 10/1 Mbps broadband speeds
Microsoft Email Case Heads Before Second Circuit Wednesday
(Inside Sources 9/8/2015)
A fed­er­al court on Fri­day up­held the Na­tion­al Se­cur­ity Agency’s bulk-spy­ing pro­gram, over­turn­ing a lower court’s 2013 rul­ing that had deemed the sur­veil­lance pro­gram “al­most Or­wellian” and likely un­con­sti­tu­tion­al.

A pan­el of three Re­pub­lic­an-nom­in­ated judges on the D.C. Cir­cuit Court of Ap­peals de­term­ined that a con­ser­vat­ive act­iv­ist and civil-liber­ties groups did not have stand­ing to chal­lenge the con­sti­tu­tion­al­ity of the pro­gram, first ex­posed by former NSA con­tract­or Ed­ward Snowden two years ago.


Former Bush Official: FCC Regs Will Slow Down Fiber

(Inside Sources 8/31/2015)

During its open meeting earlier this month the Federal Communications Commission laid out some of its first proposals regarding the “IP transition” — the effort by major telecommunications providers to replace aging copper wire networks with Internet protocol-based infrastructure like fiber. According to a former Bush administration official, those rules will unfairly benefit smaller competing providers without their own networks, while slowing the transition and its benefits to average consumers.


The First US City With 10 GB Internet Is … Salisbury

(Wired 9/4/2015)

Ever heard of Salisbury, North Carolina? Well, it’s now on the map as the first in the nation to offer 10 gigabit-per-second-internet connections to its citizens. The new service, revealed yesterday, is nearly 1,000 times as fast as the average internet connection in the US. A local private college is the first customer to receive the service.

Today, few people can take advantage of even a one-gigabit connection, let alone 10 gigabits. Google, for example, floated the idea of a 10-gigabit service last year, but has remained focused on rolling out its 1-gigabit Google Fiber service first.