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Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2014-05-07 10:18
For those interested, please see a nine-minute highlight video of NetCompetition’s April 4th expert panel on making consumers, not technology, the organizing principle of any update of the obsolescing Communications Act.
The experts, Gene Kimmelman of Public Knowledge, Jeff Eisenach, of the American Enterprise Institute, Mark Cooper of the Consumer Federation of America, and Hal Singer of the Progressive Policy Institute, all discussed the merits of making consumers, not technology, the starting point and organizing principle of any update of the Communications Act.
Google’s Anti-Competitive Rap Sheet Warrants Prosecution Not Leniency – An Open Letter to European CommissionersSubmitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2014-04-30 21:51
Dear European Commission Official,
Would Interpol, or any EU prosecutor, ever recommend pursuing a lenient settlement with their overall #1 worst offender -- without extracting any punishment, restitution, admission of wrongdoing, or deterrent effect -- rather than prosecuting the worst offender to the full extent of the law?
Would any other prosecutor publicly threaten swift prosecution against a high-profile defendant repeatedly and then give the defendant three chances to settle over a period of several months when the defendant’s first two proposed remedies proved to be demonstrablydeceptive in market tests?
Of course not! That would be antithetical to the fair, honest, and effective administration of justice.
Then why, after its own investigation found Google to be dominant, and to have abused its dominance in four distinct ways, is DGComp strongly advocating that Google be protected from prosecution for clear violations of EU competition law?
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Mon, 2014-04-28 09:01
The Internet has long had multiple speeds. And it constantly gets faster speeds via technological and commercial innovation, competition, and investment.
The Internet also has long met people’s diverse needs, wants and means for speed, with different technologies, pricing, and content delivery methods, and it will continue to do so.
Net neutrality activists’ latest rhetoric that opposes the FCC’s court-required update of its Open Internet rules, by implying that there haven’t been “slow and fast lanes” on the Internet before, is obviously factually wrong and misleading, both for consumers receiving content and for entities sending content.
Many in the media have fallen for this mass “fast lane” deception without thinking or questioning it.
First, isn’t it odd that those who routinely complain that the Internet is not fast enough oppose genuine FCC efforts to make the Internet faster?
Moreover, isn’t it ironic that the net neutrality activists -- who have long criticized the FCC for the U.S. falling behind in the world in broadband speeds, and long advocated for municipalities to create giga-bit fast lanes for some communities -- vehemently oppose FCC efforts to create “faster lane” Internet for those entities that need it and are willing to pay for it?
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2014-04-22 23:09
Please don’t miss my new Daily Caller op-ed: “The FCC Disincentive Auction.”
It’s Part 13 of my Spectrum Waste Fraud & Abuse Series.
Spectrum Waste Fraud & Abuse Series
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2014-04-15 18:27
It appears the FCC may be betting again that it is smarter than everyone else in the marketplace. Time will tell.
From the various reports of briefings about the FCC’s planned rules for the 600 MHz incentive auction, two things appear clear. First, the FCC doesn’t trust market forces. And second, the FCC doesn’t want the highest bidders to win the spectrum.
Apparently, the FCC is trying to produce something for everyone in this now circus-like auction process – a proverbial, dazzling three-ring-circus of political compromises that catch and keep different people’s attention.
At core, the FCC reportedly is adding a third ring to the already-complex, unprecedented, two-ring circus of the incentive auction. The first ring is the incentive reverse auction of broadcasters bidding for what they must earn in order to sell their spectrum, and the second ring is what wireless companies will then pay to own the broadcasters’ spectrum.
The FCC wants to add a third ring to this growing auction spectacle. Reportedly the FCC is going to effectively create yet a third auction process that would commence when certain, not-yet-known auction revenue targets are met in the auction. Below those FCC-determined-revenue-targets anyone can bid. Above those targets, the largest potential bidders’ opportunities to bid further would be dramatically restricted.
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2014-04-08 17:14
Please don’t miss my new Daily Caller op-ed: “Online Video Competition’s Tipping Point Has Tipped.”
It pulls together how regulatory developments, much faster wireless networks, and several new entrants with deep pockets are converging to create a tipping point for over-the-top, online video competition.
It is Part 25 of my Broadband Internet Pricing Freedom series.
Broadband Internet Pricing Freedom Series
Part 1: Netflix' Glass House Temper Tantrum Over Broadband Usage Fees [7-26-11]
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Thu, 2014-04-03 16:01
Please don’t miss my new white paper that I will present Friday at a NetCompetition Capitol Hill event with the following well-known experts responding: Gene Kimmelman of Public Knowledge; Jeff Eisenach of the American Enterprise Institute; Mark Cooper of the Consumer Federation of America; and Hal Singer of the Progressive Policy Institute. (Event details are below for anyone who wishes to attend.)
The white paper -- “Thinking and Starting Anew: Modernizing Communications Law for American Consumers” -- has a simple but critically important premise: that consumers and not technology should be the organizing principle of any update of the Communications Act.
I believe you will find the two contrasting graphics particularly helpful:
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Mon, 2014-03-31 08:58
Dear European Commission Official,
The more the European Commission learns about the proposed EC-Google competition settlement, the less sense it makes, and the more scandalous it appears.
Never has the European Commission been presented with such a controversial, perverse, and unreasonable competition settlement to approve. This is not how the EC’s law enforcement process is supposed to work.
Everyone knows that a worthy settlement is a true compromise, where most parties gain something they need, and on balance support it as a reasonable net gain from the status quo. It is telling that virtually no one but Google is supporting this settlement outcome publicly or coming to Google’s defense. That fact should scream that this proposed settlement is not what it is represented to be.
Sadly, this particular process and settlement has devolved into an indefensible and perverse spectacle that has brought unwelcome attention and ridicule to a critical EC law enforcement process that must be beyond reproach.
The reason the European Commission has yet to disapprove a DGComp proposed settlement, is that the European Commission has never been presented with a toxic settlement that is so perversely: anti-consumer; un-European; worse than the status quo; pro-dominance; tolerant of dominance abuses; and ineffective in achieving its main priority – “quick resolution.”
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Mon, 2014-03-10 14:06
With due credit to "Ripley's Believe it or Not!®," so much odd and bizarre is happening in Washington in the "name" of "U.S. wireless competition criticism” that the topic calls for its own collection of: "Believe it or Not!®" oddities.
Softbank’s CEO Masayoshi Son, who bought Sprint for $21b in 2013 with public plans “to become the #1 company in the world,” tells U.S. regulators just eight months after he bought Sprint, that Softbank-Sprint cannot compete with either of America’s #1 and #2 wireless providers, Verizon and AT&T, unless Softbank can buy America’s #4 wireless provider -- T-Mobile!
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Wed, 2014-03-05 14:33
As the dust has settled from the D.C. Circuit’s January 14thdecision to vacate and remand the FCC Open Internet Order for another try, and from FCC Chairman Wheeler’s February 19thstatement accepting the court’s invitation to propose open Internet rules that could pass court muster, what does it all this mean going forward?
First, we need to glean the key separate baseline takeaways from what the court ruled and also what Chairman Wheeler initially decided. Then we need to put them together to glean what the big going-forward takeaways are.
Court Decision Takeaways