Articles posted in the ‘FCC’ Category

At Urging of Competify Coalition of Telecom Competitors, FCC Launches Inquiry of Broadband Business Services

FCC, IP Transition October 19th, 2015

WASHINGTON, October 19, 2015 – The Federal Communications Commission on Friday announced that it had launched an investigation into the broadband pricing plans of local exchange carriers AT&T, CenturyLink, Frontier and Verizon Communications for so-called “special access services” of business data.

A coalition of competitive carriers and non-profit organizations dubbed Competify has been urging the inquiry, and praised Friday’s order by the agency’s Wireline Communications Bureau.


“The incumbents use inherently anticompetitive lock-up plans – which only an entity with immense market power could impose – to charge businesses and anchor institutions excessive access rates that harm competition, restrain the deployment of competitive facilities, and impede the transition to next-generation services,” according to a statement released by the group.


Pell Center Report Emphasizes Continuing Role in Broadband for State Entities

Broadband Data, Broadband Mapping, Education, FCC, Health, Minority, NTIA, Public Safety September 16th, 2015

WASHINGTON, September 16, 2015 – State broadband entities and commissions continue to plan an important role in fostering economic development and digital learning, according to a recent report from the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy.

The report, “State-Level Broadband Policy: A Compendium of Resources and Approaches,” catalogs some of the important capabilities and tools of the federal technology program dubbed the State Broadband Initiative of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

But the report, by Pell Center Adjunct Fellow Angela Siefer, also advances the discussion about state-level broadband resources by highlighting more recently discussed tools, including eRate funding, telecommunications modernization legislation, and ways to promote local infrastructure partnerships.

Angela Siefer


Former Architect of National Broadband Plan Says That Every City Needs a Broadband Plan

Broadband's Impact, FCC, Gigabit Networks, National Broadband Plan September 14th, 2015

September 14, 2015 – Every city should create a city-wide broadband plan of its own, said the former director of the National Broadband Plan, in wide-ranging speech touting four strategies useful for different types of city broadband plans.

Speaking on Friday at the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Officers annual conference in San Diego, Blair Levin of the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program and the group Gig-U, said that every city should tackle four key strategies: (1) Getting fiber deeper into neighborhoods; (2) Using community WiFi; (3) Getting everyone online; and (4) Promoting innovative civic applications for broadband.

Levin, the former architect of the Federal Communications Commission’s broadband plan, crafted from 2009 to 2010, said that the United States was about the 20th country to adopt such a plan for the deployment of high-speed internet. Nearly 150 countries have one now.

“With cities, we’re where we were with countries in 2010. Several dozen have them,” Levin said. “But now, such a plan is becoming table stakes for any city that wants its residents to be part of the 21st Century Information Economy.”

In his remarks, Levin addressed the pivotal role that Google Fiber has played in spurring the development of Gigabit Networks. Indeed, on Thursday, Google announced upcoming fiber-optic deployments in three new cities: Irvine, Calif., Louisville, Kentucky; and San Diego.

He categories the types of cities, and they relative trajectories towards Gigabit Networks, as follows:

“The first set of communities is those that either have or are likely to see Google Fiber enter. For these, the starting strategy is pretty simple. Accelerate to the extent possible, Google’s entry.” Whether or not Google comes, such cities will be well-situated for others, as well.

Blair Levin


FCC Workshop on eRate Funding Shows New Flexibility for School and Library Fiber Builds

FCC, Fiber, Gigabit Networks, Universal Service June 18th, 2015

June 18, 2015 – Recent changes to the eligibility rules for the Federal Communication Commission’s eRate program open the door for new fiber connections for schools and libraries using agency funds. Among the rule changes were the suspension of the requirement that applicants seek funding for large up front construction costs over several years, the […]

Washington Telecom Insiders Focusing on New ‘Broadband Moment’ Through Significant Policy Tweaks

Broadband's Impact, FCC, National Broadband Plan, NTIA June 8th, 2015

June 8, 2015 – Some are calling it a second “broadband moment.” More than six years after  the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was responsible for more than $7 billion in federal funds being spent on broadband infrastructure, internet adoption and telecommunications mapping, there’s a new level of interest in re-vising the National Broadband Plan, […]

Schools, Health and Libraries Conference a Vital Connection for Public Broadband

Education, FCC, Health, Minority, NTIA, Universal Service May 18th, 2015

Schools, Health and Libraries Broadband Coalition Conference

WASHINGTON, May 18, 2015 – More than five years after the unveiling of the National Broadband Plan, policy-makers and on-the-ground-advocates seeking to build better broadband networks will convene here this week at the annual conference of the Schools, Health and Libraries Broadband Coalition.

The conference, “Enhancing Broadband Through Innovation, Investment and Inclusion,” has become the regular Washington gathering point for those engaged in public broadband initiatives.

Among the keynote and plenary sessions at this year’s conference include addresses by Federal Communications Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, former Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, former Virginia Gov. and Sen. George Allen, plus Mayor Jill Boudreau of Mount Vernon, Washington.

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler Pokes Finger in Eye of Telecom Incumbents at Broadband Communities in Austin

FCC, Gigabit Networks April 14th, 2015

AUSTIN, April 14, 2015 – The Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission came to Broadband Communities Summit here to metaphorically poke his finger in the eye of the biggest incumbent communications companies.

He cited this city as Exhibit A for his mantra of “competition, competition, competition.”

And one day after the first of multiple legal challenges to the agency’s network neutrality rules, Wheeler delivered a full-throated defense of those regulations.

Wheeler also defended — to repeated applause from the crowd — a vigorous defense of municipalities and to communities’ rights to offer broadband internet services.

Chairman Tom Wheeler at the Broadband Communities Summit.

Jonathan Chambers of the FCC Says Results of Rural Broadband Experiment Teach Incumbents a Lesson

Broadband Data, Broadband Mapping, FCC, NTIA, Rural Utilities Service, Universal Service April 14th, 2015

AUSTIN, April 14, 2015 – The official from the Federal Communications Commission responsible for the agency’s unique “rural broadband experiment” on Monday said the experiment was less about learning than about teaching the rural telecom industry that it can do better.

Speaking on panel at the Broadband Communities Summit here, Jonathan Chambers, chief of the Office of Strategic Planning at the FCC, said: “I wanted to teach certain people in Washington that we could do better than 4 megabits per second (Mbps) down and 1 Mbps up [in broadband speeds.]” [...]

Jonathan Chambers, Chief, Office of Strategic Planning, FCC

AT&T Settles with FCC for $25 Million in Landmark Privacy and Data Breach Agreement

Cybersecurity, Expert Opinion, FCC, Privacy April 8th, 2015

Cattanach_Robert (640x427)Editor’s Note: On Wednesday, the Federal Communications Commission announced a $25 million settlement with AT&T for data breaches including  the releasing of thousands of customer records, including names, phone numbers and some Social Security numbers. welcomes commentaries and opinions on this and other subjects from a multitude of viewpoints.

WASHINGTON, April 8, 2015 – The FCC’s settlement with AT&T sets another benchmark for data breach enforcement, with several important developments.

First, it demonstrates the continuing encroachment of the FCC into areas once thought to be the exclusive domain of the FTC.  This is a classic data breach enforcement action that typically would have been prosecuted by the FTC until most recently. [...]

FCC fines CenturyLink $16M over multistate 911 outage | Minnesota Public Radio News

FCC April 8th, 2015

The Federal Communications Commission has fined CenturyLink $16 million for a multistate 911 outage that prevented millions of people from making emergency calls over a six-hour period last year. It’s the largest 911-related fine ever levied by the government agency. The FCC says the outage occurred in April 2014. It affected six counties in Minnesota […]

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