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Google’s Internet Association Hypocritically Begs Digital Protectionism

The juxtaposition of Google tacitly accusing the EU with “digital protectionism” and “discrimination” as the EU’s Digital Chief, Günther Oettinger, visits D.C. and Silicon Valley, while the Google-created Internet Association this week asks for U.S. protection from ISP “discrimination” in an appeals court brief in support of the FCC’s Open Internet order – exposes exceptional hypocrisy.

Antitrust and privacy regulators around the world weren’t born yesterday. They know Google and its online platform allies want it both ways – manipulating policy to advantage them and disadvantage their potential competitors.

The FCC’s Reasonable Unreasonableness? – A Satire

The FCC’s 218 page “brief” defending its Open Internet Order begs a big question.

How many times is it “reasonable” for any agency to assert that their core legal arguments are “reasonable” before they sound unreasonable? A few? Several? A dozen?

Of the 19 core statutory arguments in the summary defense of the FCC’s Open Internet order, TWELVE defend the order by declaring the FCC’s legal judgment was “reasonable.”

When arguing in court that the FCC has the statutory authority to common-carrier-regulate the Internet for the first time, shouldn’t the FCC be able to declare at least once in their summary defense: “the law says,” “precedent supports,” or at least “Congress intended?”  

The FCC Built its Net Neutrality House on Legal Sand

The FCC’s latest legal brief defending its Open Internet Order, will represent the FCC’s “strongest possible” legal arguments for its Title II net neutrality case – a vainglorious legal fortress.

In reality, the FCC’s legal case is closer to a magnificent beach sandcastle.

Its downfall will be that its case is sand, on top of a sand foundation -- that won’t be able to weather the elements intact.

Consider some of the elements the FCC’s sandcastle legal case must withstand.

The term “net neutrality,” or direct Congressional authority to mandate the FCC’s concept of “net neutrality,” is not found in law.

The FCC’s Title II Trifecta Gamble -- My Daily Caller Op-ed

Please don’t miss my latest Daily Caller op-ed: “FCC’s Title II Trifecta Gamble.”

  • It explains why the FCC’s Title II trifecta bet politically and legally could not be more risky.


The FCC has Lost Its Credibility Internationally


What is the Internet?

Simple question, one would think the FCC could give a simple, straight and accurate answer when talking to their international regulatory counterparts, but they won’t.

That’s because they don’t want them to regulate the Internet like the FCC just has regulated the Internet in its Open Internet Order.

To try and justify regulating just the ISP-telecommunications-side of the Internet, but not regulating the Silicon-Valley-telecommunications-side of the Internet, the FCC’s, diplomatic message is as hypocritical as it is embarrassing: ‘do as we say, not as we do.’ (Translation: Adopt America’s Silicon-Valley-industrial-policy as your country’s policy.)   

The FCC has lost its credibility internationally because to claim that they are not regulating the Internet, the FCC must torture the definition of “the Internet” beyond recognition.

America’s international counterparts get the joke, they weren’t born yesterday.

And the joke is the FCC’s spin.

FCC Changed “Can-do” Internet into “Can’t-do” Internet – Daily Caller Op-ed

Please don’t miss my latest Daily Caller op-ed, “FCC Changed “Can-do” Internet into “Can’t-do” Internet.

  • It puts into perspective how the FCC’s assertion of Title II utility regulation of the Internet changes the ethos of America’s Internet.


FCC Open Internet Order Series

Part 1: The Many Vulnerabilities of an Open Internet [9-24-09]

FCC’s “Gotcha” Game of ISP Regulation & Enforcement

The FCC’s just operative Open Internet Order, with its classification of broadband as Title II common carriage and vague Internet conduct standard, sets ISPs up for FCC “gotcha” or contrived regulation and enforcement.

FCC Commissioner O’Reilly exposed the FCC’s “gotcha!” game: “I will be vigilant in resisting any attempts by the agency to act as a referee enforcing rules known to none of the players and made up along the way.”

And the FCC’s Enforcement Chief, Travis LeBlanc, tacitly admitted to playing the contrived “gotcha!” game in an article with the National Journal entitled: “The FCC’s $365 Million Man.”

Will FCC Lock-in Net Neutrality Gains in Legislation or Risk All in Court & Ballot Box?

The appellate process will only get tougher for the FCC’s Title II Open Internet Order from here, which means both legal and electoral uncertainty over the permanence of the FCC’s net neutrality authority will only grow as the appellate process plays out and the 2016 Presidential election approaches.

Simply, do the FCC and its congressional supporters essentially cash in and keep their net neutrality gains long term for consumers in bipartisan net neutrality legislation now, or do they double down by waiting and maybe losing it all in either the Supreme Court or the 2016 Presidential election?

From their current position of relative strategic negotiating strength, an operative Open Internet Order empowering the FCC to enforce protection of net neutrality, the FCC and its congressional supporters, need to take stock of their situation and ask themselves if they want to lock-in their bright-line net neutrality protections now and permanently protect consumers against blocking, throttling, and paid prioritization, in bipartisan legislation?

Or do they want to roll both the court and electoral dice that their relative strategic negotiating position will improve from here and risk losing most all their net neutrality gains and authority, in the next 18-24 months to an ultimate court loss in the Supreme Court or to a Republican elected President in 2016, who would likely overturn the Order in 2017?  

Three Big FCC Title II Privacy Questions – My Multichannel News Op-ed

Below is my op-ed “Privacy’s Big Three” on the FCC’s pending interpretation of its newly asserted Title II section 222 privacy authority. It is a side-bar in this week’s Multichannel News cover story “Who’s Watching Whom?” Click here for the full Multichannel article.

This succinct op-ed spotlights the three biggest privacy questions the FCC must grapple with here:

  1. Any privacy protection predictability?
  2. Any competitive privacy policy parity?
  3. An FCC Do Not Track List?    


Privacy’s Big Three

How FCC Hurt Its Title II Anti-Stay Case

The FCC’s latest legal brief opposing a stay of its Open Internet Order, hurt its legal case more than it helped.

The FCC brief unwittingly: exposed a glaring internal inconsistency with the FCC’s Open Internet Order; spotlighted its arbitrary and capricious decision-making; and exposed a big mistake in its legal strategy.    

If the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals panel rules on the legal merits of the industry’s petition, it remains very likely they will grant a partial stay of the Title II reclassification part of the FCC’s Open Internet Order.


Q&A One Pager Debunking Net Neutrality Myths