Net Neutrality Series 2.0

Statement On FCC Order Restoring Internet Freedom

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Washington, DC, December 14, 2017 – Fred Campbell, director of Tech Knowledge, issued the following statement regarding the Federal Communications Commission’s order restoring internet freedom:

“Tech Knowledge applauds the FCC for repealing the Obama administration’s bureaucratic power grab over internet regulation. Our elected representatives in Congress should decide the fundamentals of how the internet is regulated, not unelected bureaucrats at the FCC. Today’s action puts that responsibility squarely on the shoulders of Congress where it belongs.”

Tech Knowledge promotes market-oriented technology policies on behalf of the public interest. Additional information about Tech Knowledge can be found on our website, techknowledge.center.

Statement On Racist Attacks On FCC Chairman Ajit Pai

Posted by | Broadband Internet, Net Neutrality Series 2.0 | No Comments

Washington, DC, November 27, 2017 – Fred Campbell, director of Tech Knowledge, issued the following statement regarding racist attacks against Ajit Pai, Chairman of the  Federal Communications Commission:

“The repeated racist attacks against FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and his family in their own home during the holiday weekend are horrific. The perpetrators of this villainy should be ashamed. These attacks aren’t net neutrality advocacy. They are terrorism.”

Tech Knowledge promotes market-oriented technology policies on behalf of the public interest. Additional information about Tech Knowledge can be found on our website, techknowledge.center.

Statement On FCC Plan To Undo Obama’s Net Neutrality Rules

Posted by | Broadband Internet, Freedom of Speech, Net Neutrality Series 2.0 | 5 Comments

Washington, DC, November 21, 2017 – Fred Campbell, director of Tech Knowledge, issued the following statement regarding the Federal Communications Commission’s plan to undo the Obama administration’s net neutrality rules:

“Tech Knowledge welcomes the FCC’s open and transparent effort to repeal the last administration’s unconstitutional net neutrality rules. In the absence of a market failure, the constitution doesn’t permit the FCC to treat the information superhighway or any other institution of the press like a public utility. This foundational principle of our system of government must be restored.”

Tech Knowledge promotes market-oriented technology policies on behalf of the public interest. Additional information about Tech Knowledge can be found on our website, techknowledge.center.

TechCrunch Doesn’t Understand The Technical Difference Between The Internet And The Telephone Network

Posted by | Broadband Internet, Net Neutrality Series 2.0 | No Comments

Its ordinarily understandable when a journalist makes a technical mistake regarding network topologies. But the ordinary benefit of the doubt doesn’t apply to TechCrunch’s mistaken accusation that the FCC’s analysis of net neutralitydeliberately” misrepresents how the internet works. When a publication puts “tech” in its name, it ought to know better, especially when the issue involves the relationship between network topologies and legal definitions. Read More

Statement On Net Neutrality Vote At FCC

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Washington, DC, May 18, 2017 – Fred Campbell, director of Tech Knowledge, issued the following statement regarding today’s FCC’s vote to reconsider Obama’s net neutrality rules:

“Today’s vote is the first step in returning to the light-touch regulatory approach that yielded the broadband internet. Light-touch regulation has a proven track record of protecting consumers while promoting competition and investment in broadband networks and maximizing innovation. Read More

Statement On FCC Chairman Pai’s Net Neutrality Speech

Posted by | Broadband Internet, Freedom of Speech, Media, Net Neutrality Series 2.0 | No Comments

Washington, DC, April 26, 2017 – Fred Campbell, director of Tech Knowledge, issued the following statement on FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s speech announcing his net neutrality plans:

“I applaud Chairman Pai’s decision to use an open and transparent process for reversing Obama’s decision to snatch political control over the internet using net neutrality as an excuse. It was an act of extraordinary bravery for Pai to start this process, and it will take an iron will for him to stand up to the Silicon Valley giants that seek to squash his plan. If they succeed, America will never be great again.

Today’s speech sets the stage for a David and Goliath battle between Pai and Google, the richest and most powerful corporation the world has ever known. Obama’s net neutrality rules were designed to support Google’s business interests, and Google will throw all its strength behind them.

It’s impossible to overstate the Google Goliath’s strength. Its power goes far beyond the massive amounts it spends on lobbying and its work on behalf of the Obama and Hillary Clinton political campaigns.

Google’s monopoly over internet advertising also gives it unseemly influence over the opinions of mainstream media. The thousands of newspapers, TV stations, and other media that rely on Google’s advertising network for a substantial portion of their revenue streams cannot afford to oppose Google on net neutrality.

That’s why Pai’s speech took so much courage. Both the mainstream media and the world’s richest corporations will be against him.

Americans who believe in free speech, freedom of the press, and fair competition cannot let him stand alone. Pai is internet freedom’s David. At this hour, we must stand by Pai.”

Tech Knowledge promotes market-oriented technology policies on behalf of the public interest. Additional information about Tech Knowledge can be found on our website, techknowledge.center.

Statement On Democratic Senators’ Press Conference Supporting the FCC’s Net Neutrality Rules

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Washington, DC, February 7, 2017 – Fred Campbell, director of Tech Knowledge, issued the following statement regarding today’s press conference in which Democratic senators campaigned for the Federal Communications Commission’s open internet regulations:

“Obama’s FCC didn’t settle the issue of internet regulation. The FCC opposed bright-line net neutrality rules during the Bush Administration, adopted them during the Obama Administration, and is expected to change course again.

Without new Congressional legislation, the FCC’s net neutrality rules will keep swinging like a pendulum with every presidential election. A lasting approach to net neutrality must come from the democratic process in Congress, not executive fiat.”

Tech Knowledge promotes market-oriented technology policies on behalf of the public interest. Additional information about Tech Knowledge can be found on our website, techknowledge.center.

How The Obama Administration Is Rewriting Competition Law At The FCC

Posted by | Antitrust, Broadband Internet, Internet Analogies, Net Neutrality Series 2.0 | No Comments

In his first presidential campaign, then-Senator Obama said “antitrust is the American way to make capitalism work for consumers,” because, “unlike some forms of government regulation, it ensures that firms can reap the rewards of doing a better job” and “insists that customers … are the judges of what best serves their needs.” Obama vowed to “reinvigorate antitrust enforcement” and work with other jurisdictions to “curb the growth of international cartels” so that “all Americans benefit from a growing and healthy competitive free-market economy.”

Regrettably, the Obama presidency’s competition policies have not matched his campaign rhetoric. According to Daniel Crane, a law professor at the University of Michigan, Obama has not reinvigorated antitrust enforcement: “With only a few exceptions, current enforcement looks much like enforcement under the Bush Administration.”

Obama has instead shown a strong preference for relying on other forms of government competition regulation — the kind that prevents firms from reaping the rewards of their investments in American infrastructure and limits what customers can demand — while complaining about the antitrust enforcement efforts of other jurisdictions that might affect U.S corporate interests. In the process, the Obama Administration has slowly been rewriting U.S. competition law in unprecedented ways.

This process has been especially apparent in communications regulation at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Though it was once seen as a “sleepy backwater,” the FCC has radically transformed its approach to competition law during the Obama Administration. The FCC’s new approach to competitive analyses runs the risks of spillover to interpretation of antitrust laws and speculation regarding the limits of government intervention in business transactions throughout the economy. Read More

Tech Knowledge Statement On Federal Court’s Net Neutrality Ruling

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Haymarket, VA, June 14, 2016 – Fred Campbell, director of Tech Knowledge, issued the following statement regarding the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals decision upholding the FCC’s most recent net neutrality rules:

“For the first time in history, a federal court has granted the government the power to regulate the press as if it were a public utility. The First Amendment’s protection for the freedom of the press has never been in greater jeopardy.

Make no mistake — this opinion marks a fundamental change in First Amendment law. Until today, the federal courts interpreted the First Amendment as prohibiting the FCC from regulating the transmission of video content and the distribution of newspapers as common carriage. Today’s decision abandons this protection for the freedom of the press and gives government the right to censor the news by imposing restrictions on its distribution.

This decision is a victory for government censorship and a stunning defeat for the free press. It’s now up to the Supreme Court to protect the First Amendment principles that form the foundation of a free and open society.”

Tech Knowledge promotes market-oriented technology policies on behalf of the public interest. Additional information about Tech Knowledge can be found on our website, techknowledge.center.

Is Net Neutrality ‘The Law’ Or ‘The Great Internet Power Grab’?

Posted by | Broadband Internet, Net Neutrality Series 2.0, Regulatory State | No Comments

Sometime in the next several months, a federal appellate court will choose between two narratives used to describe the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) decision earlier this year to regulate the Internet as a public utility using “net neutrality” rules:

  1. Was the FCC simply implementing the law as Congress had always intended; or
  2. Was net neutrality a ploy for an Internet power grab by three unelected bureaucrats?

A twitter conversation with net neutrality proponent Matt Wood, policy director at Free Press, indicates that the FCC’s version of “net neutrality” is the government’s “great Internet power grab.” The law does not require the FCC to regulate the Internet as public utility, and in the view of net neutrality opponents, the law does not even permit the FCC to do so. To the extent Congress has expressly addressed the “Internet” in the Communications Act, the law states, “It is the policy of the United States . . . to preserve the vibrant and competitive free market that [previously] exist[ed] for the Internet and other interactive computer services, unfettered by Federal or State regulation.”

This truth is the reason that Free Press is so vehement about its disingenuous suggestion that “the law” has always required the FCC to regulate the Internet as a public utility. Read More