The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) proposal to regulate over-the-top (OTT) video providers as ‘multichannel video programming distributors’ (MVPDs) — regulatory speak for pay-TV networks like cable and satellite television — is a harbinger of the regulatory reality facing so-called ‘edge’ companies. For over a decade, they have been pushing the FCC to impose strict ‘net neutrality’ requirements on Internet service providers (ISPs) (like Verizon FIOS) that would leave Silicon Valley giants (like Google and Netflix) unbounded by the agency’s authority. The FCC’s move to regulate OTT companies who offer ‘linear’ video programming should have these tech titans asking themselves, “Who’s next?” Read More
Tim Wu and other net neutrality advocates argue that reclassifying broadband as a Title II service would be “obvious and easy.” They are, at best, naive. Yesterday I met with the general counsel’s office at the FCC to explain why reclassifying broadband as ‘telecommunications’ would be far riskier than using the agency’s authority under Section 706. The legal explainer is pasted below (with an updated cover page). Read More
The following op-ed authored by Fred Campbell was originally published in the Detroit News.
Did Netflix, the self-anointed champion of Net neutrality and higher broadband speeds, deliberately cause an Internet slowdown for its own subscribers?
New research from computer scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Center for Applied Internet Data Analysis shows that, as its traffic increased in the last two years, Netflix forced it through clogged delivery routes, when less congested channels were available.
The scientists concluded the data “strongly suggest that the correct response to growing congestion” was for Netflix to use different connections for its traffic, not for Comcast to add capacity. This corroborates Comcast’s argument that “Netflix has not been honest.”
Evidence also suggests that, at the same time Netflix allowed congestion to increase until it affected performance, Netflix published misleading data casting the blame on Comcast. Read More
The Hill’s Congress Blog published an article I wrote about the government’s need to collect data on the market for video advertising before it makes decisions that could have anticompetitive consequences in the video marketplace.
The complete article is available HERE.