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A Forward-Looking Perspective of Verizon-Cable Agreement

Reports that the Senate Antitrust Subcommittee will hold a hearing on the Verizon Wireless-Comcast

Obsolete Television Law Needs Modernization

Important free market communications legislation introduced in mid-December warrants flagging because it brings needed attention to a real and growing problem, how obsolete communications law stifles innovation, growth and consumer benefit.

See my Forbes Tech Capitalist post on the DeMint-Scalise bill, “The Next Generation Television Marketplace Act.

Does FCC Want to Become The Federal Video Programming Commission?

This week an FCC Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) ordered Comcast to carry The Tennis Channel in the same tier and channel neighborhood as The Golf Channel and Versus, another sports channel.  

  • Given the deep flaws in the ALJ's highly-intrusive, and micro-managing decision, there are several good reasons the FCC should overturn the ALJ's decision upon appeal.

1.  Implements Obsolete Law: The section of law at issue here, Section 616 of the 1992 Cable Act, is predicated on early 1990s market conditions of cable being a monopoly video distributor with large ownership interests in cable channels. Two decades later, that market assessment predicate is obsolete as cable now has only 60% of the video distribution market and dramatically less ownership interests in cable channels. At core the FCC has to decide if it is fair, sound or legitimate competition policy to completely ignore current competition facts.

Verizon-Cable Spectrum: Is FCC Open to Competition?

The out-of-the-box thinking that led to Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House to sell $3.6b of AWS spectrum to competitor Verizon is a watershed competitive development which ultimately will flush out the real FCC.

 

 

Top Ten Flaws in FCC’s AT&T/T-Mobile Competition Analysis

The unprecedented release of a FCC draft staff analysis opposing the the proposed AT&T/T-Mobile transaction could backfire legally, undermining its intent to backstop the DOJ's pending lawsuit against the merger.

See my Forbes Tech Capitalist post here on the "Top Ten Flaws in the FCC's AT&T/T-Mobile Competition Analysis."

 

NetCompetition Statement on Verizon/Cable-SpectrumCo Transaction

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 2, 2011

Contact: Scott Cleland

703-217-2407

Verizon/SpectrumCo Deal Reflects Metamorphosis of Communications Competition

Broadband, Internet, & Cloud Computing Technologies Creating Omni-Modal Competition

WASHINGTON D.C. – Verizon Wireless’ purchase of 20 MHz of currently unused, near-nationwide AWS spectrum from Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Networks for $3.6b and reselling rights spotlights the extraordinary metamorphosis of communications competition being driven by broadband, Internet and cloud computing technologies.

The following quotes may be attributed to Scott Cleland, Chairman of NetCompetition.org:

Grand Theft Auto-mated! Online Ad-Economics Fuel Piracy & SOPA Opposition

 

The likely passage of online anti-piracy legislation (SOPA/PIPA) in 2012 has put a spotlight on the substantial ad-based business interests aligned with piracy and against piracy enforcement.

See my Forbes Tech Capitalist post here to learn why Grand Theft Auto-mated is such big business and so anti-piracy enforcement.

Grand Theft Auto-mated! Online Ad-Economics Fuel Piracy & SOPA Opposition

 

SOPA Opponents' Bogus Net Neutrality Comparisons

The only thing proponents of Net neutrality regulation and opponents of online piracy legislation appear to have in common is the boy-crying-wolf "censorship" rhetoric of FreePress' Save The Internet activists.

See my Forbes Tech Capitalist post here, "SOPA Opponents' Bogus Net Neutrality Comparisons."

Net Neutrality Proponents Pyrrhic Senate Victory

The Senate's 52-46 rejection of the Resolution of Disapproval of the FCC's net neutrality regulations (after the House voted differently 240-179 to disapprove last spring), is a classic pyrrhic victory for net neutrality proponents in two big ways.

First, the issue put the FCC on the political radar screen of every Member of Congress, and not in a good way.

For several hours the Senate debated and then officially voted on whether the Constitutionally-authorized Congress should be the entity to effectively establish new Internet law, or whether unelected FCC commissioners with no direct statutory authority from Congress should be able to effectively establish new Internet law and effectively claim boundless unchecked regulatory power whenever they see fit.

Supporters of the FCC were put in the very awkward position of politically having to defend a constitutional/legal position that:

 

  • Is strongly contrary to the Senate's institutional interests; and
  • Involves preemptive regulation of a major swath of the economy without credible evidence of any existing problem -- all in the midst of a weak economy badly struggling to create jobs.

 

The Politics of Regulating the Internet

As the Senate prepares to vote on the fate of the FCC's net neutrality regulations this week, it's instructive to look more closely at the politics of regulating the Internet.

Read my Forbes Tech Capitalist post here.

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Q&A One Pager Debunking Net Neutrality Myths