t’s great to have a nation with China’s resources developing technology products that can be used all over the world. This keeps US firms such as Cisco and European firms like Ericsson on their toes. But at the end of the day, users of these products need to be allowed to choose on the basis of product quality rather than nation-of-origin leverage.
We need clarity about our antitrust standards as they apply to the Internet, safeguards for personal data, and reverse auctions to bring better broadband to rural America. None of that is terribly sexy, but it’s all important.
EFF claims that Article 13 is an “extinction level event for the Internet.” Please, haven’t we had enough of that sort of hysteria? The Internet will remain a vibrant and vital system for communication despite – and perhaps because of – reforms such as Article 13.
An awful lot of things that are sold to us as improvements to Internet security simply deliver more information into the hands of a small group of companies. Whether that’s a good thing is for you to decide, but for my own part I like to be selective about what I share with which players.
The Obama FCC admitted that it could not find the sweet spot. In the 2015 Open Internet Order, former Chairman Wheeler simply claimed regulatory authority to sanction firms for behaviors he could not anticipate. Rather than creating bright line rules, Wheeler raised his voice and issued threats. Angry threats have subsequently become the preferred way to regulate not only the Internet but its regulators as well. This is not productive, but it’s the road chosen by many.
Changing ISPs from their historic status to Title II is a move the FCC can’t make without Congressional authorization. This is especially true given the 1996 Telecommunications Act clearly declares ISPs to be information services. There is no clue in the ’96 Act that substituting dial-up for broadband changes the nature of ISP service.
The trouble with 477 is that providers can only report on the areas they cover, while the real questions are about the areas they don’t. It may be that the best way to get the data we need is through the Census. It deserves some investigation even though Pallone and Doyle didn’t raise the question.
The Internet is not simply a sandbox for network research any more, it has become the primary means of electronic communication around the world. Before long, it will be the only such means and we will all be better for it. Please allow firms that depend on networking to invest efficiently so as to maximize their incentives to innovate.