You are here

AT&T

Google unabashed about gaming the FCC auction process to fleece the taxpayer of ~$7billion

Many have broadly swallowed Google's "spin" that Google really "won" by losing the 700Mhz auction -- without digesting the serious implications of Google's public admission.   

  • So needy to convince everyone that Googlers, yet again, proved themselves to be the smartest people alive, Google hasn't realized that they have unabashedly admitted to de facto gaming and manipulating an official Government auction statutorily-created to fully reward taxpayers for commercial use of public airwaves. 
  • Miguel Helft of The New York Times has the best coverage of Google's actions in the auction in his article: "An Auction That Google Was Content to Lose." 
    • Our primary goal was to trigger the openness conditions,” said Richard Whitt, Google’s Washington telecommunications and media counsel."
    • The article goes on to explain its nonsensical bidding strategy of bidding against itself: "For much of the first week, Google gradually topped its own bids. With no competitors emerging, anxiety grew."  

So what's wrong with what Google did?  

First and foremost, Google's flagrant manipulation of the auction rules and process fleeced the American taxpayer out of at least $7 billion, by my estimate.

Of course the FCC will deny the Skype-Carterfone petition for open access regulation of wireless

It was very welcome, but not surprising news, that FCC Chairman Martin and a majority of the FCC plan to deny eBay-Skype's petition to apply 1960's "Carterfone" monopoly regulations on today's wireless competitors.

This was not a close call. Carterfone regulations were appropriate forty years ago with a monopoly and no competition. However, dusting off ancient regulations for a bygone monopoly era have no business or relevance today. 

The facts are that Americans enjoy more wireless competition than most any country in the world, enjoy the lowest or near lowest wireless prices in the world, and use about four times more wireless minutes than our european counterparts, because of the dramatically lower prices -- all per the American Consumer Institute

  • The market is serving consumers excellently, and vastly better than regulators could ever hope to.

The Skype petition is an excellent evidence that the net neutrality movement does not believe in competition policy or a free market Internet, but believe in a government managed Internet.

  • The FCC majority rightfully understands that government control and regulation of the Internet would be an unmitigated disaster for all concerned.  

    

More bandwidth no cure for network management -- Japan experience shows

Despite Japan having some of the fastest and cheapest broadband in the world, they still have to worry about network congestion and need to manage their networks and shape traffic, according to Adam Peake, a fellow at the International University of Japan who spoke yesterday at the Freedom to Connect Conference.

The takeaway here is that many in the net neutrality movement maintain that there is no need to manage the network if providers would just add more capacity.

  • The Japan experience is powerful evidence of the fallacy of that argument.
  • Experience shows that usage can often fill whatever capacity is made available.

Peake also explained that there is a pernicious p-2-p program called Winny, which is a major culprit in the network congestion and which is near universally reviled because it is one of those pernicious p-2-p programs that give all p-2-p a bad name because the protocol routinely makes the private content on users' hard drives available for identity theives and fraudsters.

How redefining broadband's lowest speed could be anti-competition & undermine universal broadband availability

I was surprised and concerned to read in Comm Daily today that the FCC's broadband data collection rulemaking "is expected to swap the FCC minimum speed for broadband -- 200 kbps -- for a tiered approach. The lowest tier would set 768 kbps as the minimum speed, an FCC source said."

  • I certainly hope this is not the case, as it could have a ton of negative unintended consequences which I will outline below.

How could changing the baseline minimum definition of what is broadband turn out to be anti-competition and undermine the universal availability of broadband?

More evidence of why a Mobility goal must be part of any "National Broadband Strategy"

CNET highlights new Comscore research that shows that mobile broadband is the fastest growing type of broadband.

  • One would think this hot consumer demand for "mobility" would universally be viewed as a good thing, but it isn't viewed that way by pro-regulation/net neutrality proponents.  
  • They fear rapidly increasing consumer demand for mobile broadband will undermine political support and the rationale for their pro-regulation proposals to regulate and subsidize one primary stationary broadband provider.

Proponents of a new National Broadband Strategy have two huge vulnerabilities:

  • technological bias that American consumers only want fast stationary broadband speed (and not mobility too); and
  • An anti-competition policy bias that the development of broadband competition over the last several years isn't working and can't work.

Those powerful policy biases against:

Exposing the sanctimony of net neutrality activists

Enough of Net neutrality activists' hypocritical sanctimony over freedom, free speech and democracy! It is sickening.

Net neutrality activists claim to support freedom, free speech, and democracy, but they really don't in practice.

First, let's look at the recent activist whining from FreePress/SaveTheInternet about how the FCC network management forum at Harvard was somehow hijacked by Comcast sympathetic attendees or who these activists have derisively called "seat fillers."

New NetCompetition.org one pager: Why Markey net neutrality Bill would regulate the Internet

  

Why the Markey Net Neutrality Bill Would Regulate the Internet

H.R.5353 would alter the FCC’s priorities to put Internet regulation ahead of competition   

Where the Markey Bill explicitly would regulate the Internet: 

Technology neutrality policy in NTIA broadband report is great guide for FCC on Network Managment

One subject I was surprised was not discussed openly at the FCC's Harvard field hearing on: Broadband Network Managment Practices, was the U.S. Government's existing policy of "technology neutrality." (The policy is pasted at the end of this post. It comes from page 5 of the NTIA January 2008 report: Networked Nation: Broadband in America 2007. http://www.ntia.doc.gov/reports/2008/NetworkedNationBroadbandinAmerica2007.pdf)

  • Technology neutrality, which is simply the policy of government not discriminating in favor of one technology over another, has been central to the U.S. Government's free market policy towards the Internet for years.
  • The FCC implemented technology neutrality policy in applying similar information service deregulatory status to the various broadband techologies: DSL, Cable modem, Wireless Broadband and Broadband over Powerlines -- in four separate (5-0) FCC rulemakings.

Why the consistent legal precedents of technology neutrality are so relevant to the FCC's investigation of the FreePress/Vuze petitions on Comcast's network management, is that big broadband providers like Comcast, AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint (among others) have very different technologies that require very different network management approaches.

Connected Nation broadband legislation would stimulate economy; Markey legislation would stifle it

Connected Nation's new report on the economic impact of pending broadband mapping bills shows how public/private partnerships could accelerate broadband deployment to all Americans and provide an estimated $134b direct economic stimulus per year for the nation.

  • The pending broadband mapping legislation adopts a bipartisan consensus approach of public/private partnerships to discover where broadband gaps are and how to stimulate actual broadband deployment to those underserved areas.
    • This mainstream approach is focused on a consensus mainstream goal that has bipartisan mainstream support -- encouraging broadband deployment to all Americans.

Contrast this mainstream legislation to promote universal broadband, with the new fringe net neutrality legislation proposed by House Telecom Chairman Ed Markey.

National Broadband Strategy Proponent has blindspot for mobile broadband

I was very surprised at the answer I got when I asked Bob Atkinson, the ITIF author of "Framing a National Broadband Policy" a question at the Alliance for Public Technology panel discussion last Friday on the topic of: "Framing a National Broadband Policy."

Pages

Q&A One Pager Debunking Net Neutrality Myths