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Robert McDowell

FCC/Net Neutrality

Critics and Supporters of Net Neutrality Trade Claims at Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing

WASHINGTON, September 21, 2014 – At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Wednesday, critics of net neutrality warned against the negative impacts of internet regulation while supporters of net neutrality said that practices by major communications demonstrated the need for such protections. Both former Federal Communications Commissioner Robert McDowell and economist Jeffrey Eisenach said that… Keep Reading

On Friday, FCC Chairman Genachowski to Announce Departure; Accomplishments Include National Broadband Plan, USF, Wireless Auctions and Wireless Competition

By Drew Clark and Doug Barclay WASHINGTON, March 22, 2013 – President Barack Obama’s law school classmate and friend Julius Genachowski plans to announce his departure from the Federal Communications Commission in a briefing at the agency on Friday morning. Among the key accomplishments during Genachowski’s tenure at the agency include: The issuance of a… Keep Reading

eRate Reform, National Public Safety Network FirstNet, Focus of Senate-FCC Oversight Hearing

WASHINGTON, March 13, 2013 – At Tuesday’s oversight hearing of the Federal Communications Commission, Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.V., on Tuesday put the focus on the portion of the Universal Service Fund designed to provide connectivity to schools and libraries, as well as on the public safety network described as FirstNet. The Senate and the agency,… Keep Reading

The Connect America Fund: Statements and Highlights from the FCC Commissioners

WASHINGTON, Friday  October 28, 2011.  The Federal Communication Commission unanimously voted to overhaul its outdated the Universal Service Fund and reform its intercarrier compensation fund at yesterday morning’s Open Commission Meeting. The FCC predicts that an effort to expand high speed internet to rural America over the next six years, will increase economic growth by… Keep Reading

FCC and FTC Deregulation Under Review As Key to Job Growth

WASHINGTON, July 7, 2011 – What was originally billed as a federal agency confessional before House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations on Thursday turned into a search to create American jobs and economic growth. Monday, the subcommittee held its fourth hearing to improve the regulatory review system. With the national unemployment rate at 9.1 percent, burdensome regulations from federal agencies are seen by both sides of the aisle and agency representatives to contribute to the problem. An Executive Order the President issued in January sought to streamline federal agencies by having them do a retrospective review of existing regulations and discard those they determined outdated and unnecessary. Keep Reading

FCC Approves Comcast-NBCU Merger

WASHINGTON – The Federal Communications Commission announced Tuesday afternoon that it had come to an agreement with Comcast and NBC Universal to approve the merger of the two companies. The Commission gave the merger the go ahead after the companies agreed to a number of conditions, among them adherence to the FCC’s recent Open Internet… Keep Reading

FCC Moves to Improve Spectrum Availability and Use By Taking from Broadcasters

WASHINGTON, December 1, 2010 - The FCC unanimously passed three measures aimed at improving spectrum availability and efficiency while spurring innovation at its November open meeting on Tuesday. The wireless industry applauded the agency's move. The first measure would reallocate over-the-air broadcast television stations so that two or more would share a 6 megahertz channel. The commission anticipates that channel sharing could free up to 120 MHz of spectrum, which would be reallocated to also carry wireless broadband. The move would comprise nearly one-fifth of the 500 MHz of spectrum the commission plans to make available for wireless broadband over the next 10 years as part of the National Broadband Plan. Keep Reading

Broadband Data/FCC

FCC Seeks Input on new Broadband Definition

WASHINGTON August 10, 2010- In the most recent Broadband Development Report the Federal Communications Commission stated that deployment was not increasing. This was the first time that the commission had made the claim due to their decision to update the definition of broadband. In reaction to this new definition the commission has released a Notice of Inquiry for next year’s report. Keep Reading

FCC Issues Notice of Inquiry Regarding Broadband Regulation and Industry Offers a Mixed Response

WASHINGTON, June 18, 2010 –Yesterday the Federal Communications Commission met to consider putting out a Notice of Inquiry on how they should regulate broadband. After the recent Comcast decision the FCC’s ability to regulate broadband was put into question. After looking at the various issues FCC’s counsel came to the conclusion that there were 2 possible methods of regulating either as an information service under Title I or as a Telecommunications service under Title II. The chairmen however did not feel that Title I gave the commission enough authority; while Title II put too much regulation on ISPs; to solve this he created his Third Way proposal. Keep Reading

FCC Workshop on Media Ownership: Picture Still Fuzzy

STANFORD, Calif., May 25, 2010 -- The digital television transition and the emergence of broadband networks have opened up intriguing new kinds of distribution channels for programming, but at a media ownership workshop held in Stanford late last week it was unclear how any of this affects the quality of local programming. Eddy W. Hartenstein, publisher and CEO of the Los Angeles Times, several executives from media start-ups like set-top box maker Sezmi, internet radio programmer Pandora Media, low-power television station KAXT-CA and multi-platform rights management company FreeWheel Media, as well as several different independent analysts, participated in a Federal Communications Commission workshop on Friday that explored the question of how new media is affecting traditional forms of media. In addition to trying to reach audiences through social media, broadcasters are also making new uses of the digital spectrum to provide new kinds of programming, and new ways to receive new forms of packaging of programming. Sezmi, for example, enables consumers to receive free-over-the-air broadcasts along with a few select cable channels and internet video-programming all integrated through its set-top box. The service is currently being rolled out in Los Angeles, where consumers can buy the boxes at Best Buy. Keep Reading

McDowell Warns Against Regulation of Broadband as Telecommunications Service

WASHINGTON, January 29, 2010 - In his keynote address to the Free State Foundation on Friday, Federal Communications Commissioner Robert McDowell said that the agency’s number one goal in the national broadband plan should be to do no harm. He was concerned, he said, that the agency was considering classifying providers of broadband infrastructure as a common carrier under Title II of the Telecommunications Act. Re-regulating internet services in such a manner might lead to a parade of horribles, McDowell said – as well as vexing nuts-and-bolts questions since the deregulatory push of the past decade remade the structure of much of telecommunications law. Keep Reading

Web Content Producers Favor Net Neutrality, Reject Regulation of Search Engines

WASHINGTON, December 16, 2009 - Web content producers applauded the efforts of the Federal Communications Commission to turn Net neutrality principles into enforceable rules – but lawyers, academics and commissioners were divided on whether the agency should begin regulating the internet in the name of democracy and economic growth. “The genius of the Internet is its openness, its dynamism and its availability to one and all,” said FCC Commissioner Michael Copps in his opening statements at a Tuesday afternoon workshop on “Democratic Engagement and the Open Internet.” Keep Reading

FCC Creates Standardized Process for Cell Tower Siting, Discusses Broadband ‘Gaps’

WASHINGTON, November 22, 2009 - In unanimous 5-0 decision, the commissioners of the Federal Communications Commission voted Wednesday to standardize the application process for tower siting requests. Advocates of the move said that the action marked another step by the agency to speed adoption of broadband in the United States. For example, FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell said, “We are promoting broadband by removing roadblocks to its development.” Keep Reading

Net Neutrality

FCC Takes First Step to Formally Regulate the Internet Through Proposed Neutrality Rules

WASHINGTON, October 22, 2009 - The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday approved controversial proposed rules governing internet access during its monthly public meeting. Commissioners on all sides of the debate stressed the importance of having an open internet, and in engaging in constructive dialogue on the issue going forward. The move marked the beginning of a formal phase of regulating internet access. Although the FCC in August 2005 adopted a policy statement pledging fidelity to four Net neutrality principles, such a policy was never binding upon all broadband providers. Additionally, the proposed rules go beyond those four generally-accepted neutrality principles. Keep Reading

Broadband's Impact

Clyburn Sworn in as FCC Commissioner

WASHINGTON, August 6, 2009 - Mignon Clyburn was sworn in Monday as a commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission. The ceremony took place in her home state of South Carolina, with the oath administered by U.S. Senior District Judge Matthew Perry Jr. Keep Reading

Senate Approves NTIA Head Strickling; Genachowski, McDowell for FCC; Baker, Clyburn on Deck

WASHINGTON, June 26, 2009 - The Senate on Thursday voted to give its consent for Julius Genachowski (D) and Robert McDowell (R) to serve five-year terms on the Federal Communications Commission, with Genachowski holding the gavel as chairman. Also receiving an affirmative vote was Lawrence Strickling, who will head the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. Keep Reading

Net Neutrality

In Possible Network Neutrality Prelude, DeMint to Demand 'Up or Down' Vote on Fairness Doctrine

WASHINGTON, February 20, 2009 - In what could potentially be an opening salvo in a renewed congressional battle over network neutrality, Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., wants to use a parliamentary tactic to force his Democratic colleagues to vote on whether the Federal Communications Commission should be stripped of the power to re-impose the Fairness Doctrine on broadcast radio. Keep Reading

Expert Opinion

Aspen Dispatch: Next Generation Policy Outlook

ASPEN, COLORADO, August 19 - Federal Communications Commissioner Robert McDowell and a panel of experts from the communications technologies industry addressed crucial issues arising for operators and users of next generation networks today at the Aspen Summit, hosted by the Progress and Freedom Foundation. Keep Reading

Expert Opinion

FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell Addresses Broadband Issues at Heritage Foundation

WASHINGTON, August 12 - At the Heritage Foundation, Republican Federal Communications Commissioner Robert McDowell presented an overview of the FCC's recent work concerning broadband internet services, including network management, cable franchising, spectrum auctions and management, deregulation of broadband services, and the debate over the United States' broadband performance. Keep Reading

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