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400 North Capitol Street, NW
Suite 765
Washington, DC 20001

  • Toll Free 1.888.564.6273
  • Local 202.783.3870
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Congress turning back Net Neutrality for Small Businesses, Now for the Rest of It

It hasn’t taken very long for Congress to realize that the burdensome regulations of net neutrality are impeding American innovation. Now, they just need to start peeling them back.

02/26/2016
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Opening Pandora’s Set-Top Box

Towards the end of January, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler made a surprise announcement about regulations regarding set-top boxes, or what many refer to as their PVR. Mr. Wheeler announced that his agency would make cable providers “open” their set-top boxes to allow third-parties access to the designs and programming, essentially allowing them to compete in the set-top box market. While, at face value, there doesn’t appear to anything too nefarious, cracking open Mr. Wheeler’s plan reveals entirely different intentions and potential costs on consumers.

02/19/2016
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Zero-Rating, Zero Innovation from the FCC

The Internet: the next frontier of human innovation. A network of infinite connections and infinite possibilities. That is, unless the FCC has anything to say about it.

02/01/2016
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Net Neutrality Is Already Restricting Consumer Choice

When the FCC began to seriously consider imposing Net Neutrality standards on internet service providers, I had many concerns. I wrote an article at the time called “Rebutting the President on Net Neutrality,” in which I listed my disagreements with a policy that, on the surface, sounds reasonable to many. One of the more controversial points I raised was in response to the “No Blocking” principle, which forbids ISPs from picking and choosing which content they provide access to. I wrote:

01/20/2016
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U.S. Telecom Association v. FCC Could be Dangerous for Consumers

Today, the federal appeals court in Washington will begin to hear arguments regarding Obama’s net neutrality rule and whether or not the government should have the ability to micromanage the internet. As it would stand under the administration’s new rule, the government would have expanded capabilities to step in and add numerous burdensome regulations to the internet. This could pose many problems to businesses that range anywhere from substantial cost hikes to increased uncertainty in the economy; thus leading to curtailed innovation and less new products being introduced to the marketplace.

12/04/2015
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FCC Commissioner Says Broadband Taxes Are Coming

When the FCC announced that it was going to regulate internet service providers as telecommunications companies, the agency was careful to assuage fears about regulatory overreach. The final rule took pains to assure us that the only purpose of a more heavily regulated internet was to enforce the principle of Net Neutrality, a workaround of a federal court’s decision that the agency was exceeding its authority.

08/05/2015
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Net Neutrality Rent Seeking Begins

When the FCC announced that it would regulate the internet under Title II of the Telecommunications Act, we predicted a number of undesirable outcomes. One of these concerns was the ability of firms to petition the regulatory agency for special favors, and file complaints against competitors without having to actually demonstrate harm. Such an environment encourages harassment suits and rent seeking behaviors by companies who direct resources into influencing government rather than towards innovation and competition.

06/24/2015
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Obamanet could be the next Obamaphone

Proponents call it necessary for bridging a societal gap. Opponents call it wasteful and beyond the point of reform. Call it what you like, the long-running controversial “Obamaphone” debate has once again been ignited. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has announced a proposal to extend the Lifeline phone subsidy program, better known as the “Obamaphone,” to now cover the internet.

05/28/2015
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FCC transparency bills gain positive progress during subcommittee vote

The name of the game was transparency during Wednesday’s Communications and Technology Subcommittee hearing, where several proposed draft bills were voted to move forward to the full committee. The proposed bills were introduced in light of the FCC’s recent Open Internet Order, a massive new regulatory regime that prompted many complaints about the process under which it was released. Subcommittee Chairman Greg Walden opened the hearing with remarks on the overwhelming need for the FCC to change its decision making process in such a way as to increase transparency and consumer access. Chairman Walden stated, “[t]he FCC’s work doesn't only impact the industries that it regulates, but as daily consumers of communications services, our own lives as well.”

05/21/2015
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The FCC's New Rules Are a Predictable Monstrosity

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) just released its final rules on how they will regulate the internet. You know, the rules they voted to pass several weeks ago. Better late than never, I guess.

03/12/2015

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