Issues

FCC Adopts Open Internet Framework

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION CHAIRMAN JULIUS GENACHOWSKI STATEMENT ON PRESERVING INTERNET FREEDOM AND OPENNESS

WASHINGTON, DC

December 21, 2010

Let me start with a quote. “The Web as we know it [is] being threatened.” That’s Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, in a recent article. He continued, “A neutral communications medium is the basis of a fair, competitive market economy, of democracy, and of science. Although the Internet and the Web generally thrive on lack of regulation, some basic values have to be legally preserved.”

Today, for the first time, the FCC is adopting rules to preserve basic Internet values. While the Commission had in the past pursued bipartisan enforcement of Open Internet principles, we have not had properly adopted rules. Now, for the first time, we’ll have enforceable, high-level rules of the road to preserve Internet freedom and openness.

As we stand here now, the freedom and openness of the Internet are unprotected. No rules on the books to protect basic Internet values. No process for monitoring Internet openness as technology and business models evolve. No recourse for innovators, consumers, or speakers harmed by improper practices. And no predictability for Internet service providers, so that they can effectively manage and invest in broadband networks.

That will change once we vote to approve this strong and balanced order. The vote on this order comes after many months of debate — which has often produced more heat than light. Almost everyone says that they agree that the openness of the Internet is essential — that openness has unleashed an enormous wave of innovation, economic growth, job creation, small business generation, and vibrant free expression.

But despite a shared allegiance to the Internet as an open platform, there has been intense disagreement about the role of government in preserving Internet freedom and openness. On one end of the spectrum, there are those who say government should do nothing at all on open Internet. On the other end are those who would adopt extensive, detailed and rigid regulations.

Both sides impose tests of ideological purity. To some, unless their test is met, open Internet rules are “fake net neutrality.” To others, unless their test is met, open internet rules are “a government takeover of the Internet.”2 For myself, I reject both extremes in favor of a strong and sensible, non-ideological framework – one that protects Internet freedom and openness and promotes robust innovation and investment throughout the broadband ecosystem.

Because none of these goals are abstractions. They live or die not in ideology or theory, but in practice — in the hard work of grappling with technology, business, and real-world consumer experiences. Now, in this issue we encounter familiar arguments – we’ve heard some today – the kind trotted out to oppose almost any government action. We are told by some, for example, not to try to fix what isn’t broken, and that rules of the road protecting Internet freedom would discourage innovation and investment. But countless innovators, investors and business executives say just the opposite, including many who generally oppose government action.

Over the course of this proceeding we have heard from so many entrepreneurs, engineers, venture capitalists, CEOs and others working daily to invent and distribute new Internet products and thereby maintain U.S. leadership in innovation. Their message has been clear: the next decade of innovation in this sector is at risk without sensible FCC rules of the road.

As one leading early stage investor put it, in thoughts echoed in a letter we receiving from 30 prominent venture capitalists: “the lack of basic ‘rules of the road’ for what network providers and others can and can’t do is starting to hamper innovation and growth.” And as we heard in a letter from more than two dozen leading technology CEOs: “Common sense baseline rules are critical to ensuring that the Internet remains a key engine of economic growth, innovation, and global competitiveness.” The innovators, entrepreneurs, and tech leaders recognize, as I do, the vital need for massive investment in broadband infrastructure.

Based on their in-market experience – they also tell us that broadband providers have natural business incentives to leverage their positions as gatekeepers of the Internet in ways that would stifle innovation and limit the benefits of the Internet. They point out that, even after the Commission on a bipartisan basis announced open Internet principles in 2005, we have seen clear and troubling deviations from open practices.

Given the importance of an open Internet to our economic future, given the potentially 3 irreversible nature of some harmful practices, and given the competition issues among broadband providers, it is essential that the FCC fulfill its historic role as a cop on the beat to ensure the vitality of our communications networks and to empower and protect consumers of those networks.

Now at the same time, government must not overreach by imposing rules that are overly restrictive or that assume perfect knowledge about this dynamic and rapidly changing marketplace. We know that – to meet our broadband speed and deployment goals for the country – broadband providers must have the business incentives to invest many billions of dollars to build out their networks, the ability to run their networks effectively, and the flexibility to experiment with new business models to further drive private investment.

Today, we are adopting a set of high-level rules of the road that strikes the right balance between the imperatives. We’re adopting a framework that will increase certainty for businesses, investors, and entrepreneurs. In key respects, the interests of edge innovators – the entrepreneurs creating Internet content, services, and applications – broadband providers, and American consumers are aligned.

Innovation at the edge catalyzes consumer demand for broadband. Consumer demand spurs private investment in faster broadband networks. And faster networks spark even cooler innovation at the edge. I believe our action today will foster an ongoing cycle of massive investment, innovation and consumer demand both at the edge and in the core of our broadband networks.

Our action will strengthen the Internet job-creation engine. Our action will advance our goal of having America’s broadband networks be the freest and fastest in the world. Our action will ensure Internet freedom at home, a necessary foundation to fight for Internet freedom around the world. The crux of the order we are adopting – which is based on a strong and sound legal framework – is straightforward.

Here are the key principles it enshrines, and the key rules designed to preserve Internet freedom and openness:4

First, consumers and innovators have a right to know the basic performance characteristics of their Internet access and how their network is being managed. The transparency rule we adopt today will give consumers and innovators the clear and simple information they need to make informed choices in choosing networks or designing the next killer app. Shining a light on network management practices will also have an important deterrent effect on bad conduct.

Second, consumers and innovators have a right to send and receive lawful traffic – to go where they want, say what they want, experiment with ideas – commercial and social, and use the devices of their choice. The rules thus prohibit the blocking of lawful content, apps, services, and the connection of devices to the network.

Third, consumers and innovators have a right to a level playing field. No central authority, public or private, should have the power to pick winners and losers on the Internet; that’s the role of the commercial market and the marketplace of ideas. So we are adopting a ban on unreasonable discrimination. And we are making clear that we are not approving so-called “pay for priority” arrangements involving fast lanes for some companies but not others. The order states that as a general rule such arrangements won’t satisfy the nonreasonable-discrimination standard – because it simply isn’t consistent with an open Internet for broadband providers to skew the marketplace by favoring one idea or application or service over another by selectively prioritizing Internet traffic.

Fourth, the rules recognize that broadband providers need meaningful flexibility to manage their networks to deal with congestion, security, and other issues. And we also recognize the importance and value of business-model experimentation, such as tiered pricing. These are practical necessities, and will help promote investment in, and expansion of, high-speed broadband networks. So, for example, the order rules make clear that broadband providers can engage in “reasonable network management”.

Fifth, the principle of Internet openness applies to mobile broadband. There is one Internet, and it must remain an open platform, however consumers and innovators access it. And so today we are adopting, for the first time, broadly applicable rules requiring transparency for mobile broadband providers, and prohibiting them from blocking websites or blocking certain competitive applications. 5

As I have said for many months, as many innovators and entrepreneurs have told us, and as the facts and record bear out, there are differences between mobile and fixed broadband that are relevant in determining what action government should take for mobile at this time.Among the differences: unique technical issues involving spectrum and mobile networks, the stage and rate of innovation in mobile broadband; and market structure.

Also, one of the largest mobile broadband providers has just begun providing 4G service using wireless spectrum subject to openness conditions adopted in connection with the auction of that spectrum.

Importantly, our order makes clear that we are not endorsing or approving practices that the order doesn’t prohibit, particularly conduct that is barred for fixed broadband. And we affirm our commitment to an ongoing process to ensure the continued evolution of mobile broadband in a way that’s consistent with Internet freedom and openness. Any reduction in mobile Internet openness would be a cause for concern—as would any reduction in innovation and investment in mobile broadband applications, devices, or networks that depend on Internet openness.

Sixth, and finally, today’s order recognizes the importance of vigilance—vigilance in promptly enforcing the rules we are adopting and vigilance in monitoring developments in areas such as mobile and the market for specialized services, which may affect Internet openness. That’s why I’m pleased that we’ve committed to create an Open Internet Advisory Committee that will assist the Commission in monitoring the state of Internet openness and the effects of our rules.

We’re also launching an Open Internet Apps Challenge on challenge.gov that will foster private-sector development of applications to empower consumers with information about their own broadband connections, which will also help protect Internet openness. The rules of the road we adopt today are rooted in ideas first articulated by Republican Chairmen Michael Powell and Kevin Martin, and endorsed in a unanimous FCC policy statement in 2005. And they are grounded in the record we have developed over the last 14 months, including more than 100,000 public comments, numerous public workshops, and hundreds of meetings with stakeholders ranging across the spectrum.

I am proud of this process, which has been one of the most transparent in FCC history. And I am proud of the result, which has already garnered broad support – from the 6 technology industry, including TechNet, the Information Technology Industry Council, the Internet Innovation Alliance and the hundreds of technology companies those groups represent, as well as many other technology companies; support from investors of all sizes, including some of the nation’s preeminent venture capitalists and angel investors.

Our framework has also drawn support from key consumer, labor, and civil rights groups, a list that includes the Consumer Federation of America, Consumers Union, the Center for Democracy and Technology, and the Communications Workers of America. I thank them and the other groups that have worked on this issue. And our framework has been supported by a number of broadband providers as well, who recognize the sensible balance of our action and the value of bringing a level of certainty to this fraught issue.

Our action today culminates recent efforts to find common ground on this challenging issue – here at the FCC, as well by private parties, and in Congress. I thank each of those who took their time over the last several months to take on these difficult issues, seeking to bridge gaps and find solutions, and who supported us in our efforts.

I want to praise and thank my colleagues Commissioners Copps and Clyburn particularly, for their vision and constancy in pushing this Commission to focus on the interest of consumers. Their work has certainly improved our rules and order. As Commissioner McDowell and Commissioner Baker pointed out, virtually all of our decisions are bipartisan or unanimous, and I look forward to working together on a series of items to serve the public and grow the economy. And I can’t express enough appreciation to the remarkable staff of the FCC, who have worked so hard – and so well – to wrestle with difficult issues and turn complex ideas into simple rules.

This includes many offices and bureaus at the FCC, including the Office of General Counsel, the Office of Strategic Planning, the Office Engineering and Technology, and the Wireline, Wireless, Media, Consumer, Enforcement, and International Bureaus.

Thank you all.

And thank you to all the staff on the 8th floor, and in particular to the extraordinary team

I’m lucky to have in the Chairman’s office. Eddie Lazarus, Zac Katz, Rick Kaplan, Josh Gottheimer, Jen Howard, Daniel Ornstein, and Maria Gaglio – you’ve each gone well above and beyond the call of duty. I apologize to your families. But I know they join me in honoring your service.

Thanks to the work of these incredible public servants, today a strengthened FCC is adopting rules to ensure that the Internet remains a powerful platform for innovation and job creation; to empower consumers and entrepreneurs; and protect free expression.7 These rules will increase certainty in the marketplace; spur investment both at the edge and in the core of our broadband networks, and contribute to a 21st century job-creation engine in the United States.

Finally, these rules fulfill many promises, including a promise to the future – a promise to the companies that don’t yet exist, and the entrepreneurs who haven’t yet started work in their dorm rooms or garages.

For all that, I am proud to cast my vote.

Health Care WiFi Spending Ushers in $1.3B Market

eWeek
By: Brian T. Horowitz
http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Health-Care-IT/Health-Care-WiFi-Spending-Ushers-in-13B-Market-886972/

Mobile devices and emerging technologies are fueling the creation of a $1.3 billion health care WiFi industry within the next five years, according to ABI Research.

The increasing use of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, as well as cutting-edge technologies, is pushing the health care industry to invest more in its WiFi infrastructure. In turn, these changes mean that the wireless market within health care is poised to grow to a $1.3 billion industry within the next five years, according to a new report by ABI Research.

Higher broadband adoption? The FCC will find an app for that

 

Arent Fox LLP USA
http://www.arentfox.com/publications/index.cfm?fa=legalUpdateDisp&content_id=3261

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has established several broadband-centered initiatives in recent months that display the agency’s appreciation for the tangible societal potential of high-speed connectivity.

Whereas previously the aim of FCC broadband policy has been enabling service providers to increase the supply of telecommunications service, à la the notion of universal service (both lowercase and capital “u” and “s”), these more recent initiatives aim at increasing demand. It appears that Chairman Julius Genachowski wants not only to spur carriers to deploy broadband, but he also wants to ensure that businesses and consumers will use it.

This intent came to light first in the National Broadband Plan, in which the FCC devoted a significant amount of energy to ascertaining how many Americans forego getting broadband, and why. That issue was not overtly teed up in Congress’s mandate for a plan ensuring “access to broadband capability,” but exploring the question whether Americans would actually use that “access” seemed a reasonable part of the exercise. The answers alarmed the FCC: only 65% of Americans use broadband at home, for reasons having little to do with its retail availability. As a result, the Plan became as much about encouraging broadband adoption as about laying transport cables.

So the Commission has, in addition to revamping Universal Service funding for the broadband era, turned its attention to what drives broadband use: applications. First was the Open Internet Applications Contest announced in January of this year. Programmers were invited to submit white papers, research, or actual applications to tell consumers how their broadband connectivity is functioning on a real-time basis. The project, which essentially commissioned the invention of an electronic watchdog against deliberate traffic disruption, was created in furtherance of the December 2010 Open Internet Order. But the Open Internet Apps Context is not only an innovative way for the FCC to ensure rule compliance – it increases consumer demand by assuring would-be subscribers that they will actually get what they pay for.

A few weeks ago, Chairman Genachowski announced the winners of the Open Internet challenge. Netalyzer was an Open Internet Research Award Winner, and proposes a Java-based applet that will link a computer to remote servers to measure several aspects of broadband-related performance, including HTTP caching and DNS manipulation. Another Open Internet Research Award Winner was the DiffProbe (short for “differential probing”), which detects whether an ISP has deployed mechanisms such as prioritization commands that alter Internet traffic. MobiPerf won both the Open Internet Research Award and the People’s Choice Award, and enables mobile handset users (those with Android and iOS operating systems) to obtain network performance information, and compiles that information anonymously. According to the FCC contest page, the winners will present their work at FCC headquarters, with travel expenses paid up to $500 per person or $1500 per team, and the applications will be featured on the FCC website and social media outlets.

The Apps For Communities contest launched in April 2011, challenging developers to create an application that will make the Internet more attractive to users. With aspirational goals of a “personalized Internet” and obtaining “actionable information,” the contest is another vehicle for the FCC to put its expertise – and up to $100,000 in prize money – behind ensuring that if telecom companies build more broadband, people will in fact come to broadband. Entries are due August 31.

The FCC’s demand-side focus now also embraces the nation’s overall economic agenda: jobs, jobs, jobs. At an event held August 4 in Jeffersonville, Indiana, the Chairman announced a partnership with Jobs4America, a coalition of call center providers, to create 100,000 new call center jobs in the next two years that, he stated, will rely entirely on broadband connectivity. Coalition members located throughout the US will either build new centers or hire persons who, thanks to broadband, can train and work at home. The program seeks to bring these jobs back from foreign countries and give them to people who, for reasons such as a disability or lack of access to child care, need to work remotely. The announcement was a victory on many fronts, none the least of which was a clear message to industry that the FCC is working to prevent a repeat of the DotCom bust in 2000 that was sparked, in large part, by miles of stranded, unused telecommunications infrastructure.

These initiatives show that the FCC is not content to assume or to assert that the mere existence of broadband is a public good. Broadband as a theory will not play. It seems that unless measurable societal benefits are achieved through integrating broadband into our classrooms, our institutions, and our workforce, the Chairman will not feel that his broadband policy was a success. If the market cannot of itself create consumer demand sufficient to create these benefits, the FCC will find an app for that.

 

 

 

 

Healthcare creating IT jobs faster than other industries

By Ken Terry

Partially due to an infusion of federal funds, the healthcare industry is creating IT jobs faster than other industries, according to a new Bureau of Labor Statistics report. The number of IT positions in healthcare is expected to grow 20 percent annually through 2018, the report says.

Since 2009, the number of health IT jobs has increased 67 percent, according to an article in Computerworld. Online employment agency SimplyHired.com, lists 7,200 open positions in the field, the article points out.

Most in demand are CIOs and CTOs, but jobs in health IT administration also are growing rapidly, SimplyHired.com’s database reveals. Since 2009, database administrator positions have grown 94 percent, and other administrative jobs in networking, systems and storage have also seen strong growth. In addition, the healthcare industry needs thousands of software developers and system analysts.

Overall, the BLS report notes, healthcare and social services jobs are expected to grow 24 percent from 2008 through 2018. Healthcare support jobs will increase by 1.1 million during that time period–more than any other service job category. However, healthcare employment took a nose dive in July, according to a report just released by The Conference Board.

In health IT, BLS predicts that a rise in medical testing, treatments and procedures performed, and electronic health record use all will be pivotal in terms of growth. “[M]ore technicians will be needed to complete the new responsibilities associated with electronic data management,” the report notes.

The problem that many hospitals and other providers encounter in filling these jobs is the shortage of qualified, experienced health IT staff. While the federally funded training programs in 82 community colleges may help meet some of the demand, the majority of the available positions are not entry level, say consultants and CIOs.

Californians Should be Happy About the FCCs New Emergency PLAN

Yesterday, at Ground Zero in New York City, FCC Chairman Genachowski announced a new public safety alerting system called PLAN, or Personal Localized Alerting Network.  PLAN will allow government officials to send text-like messages to consumers’ mobile devices in geographically-targeted areas during times of emergency, something CALinnovates thinks is a smart move.  You can learn more about PLAN here.  Here’s our statement in support of the FCC’s PLAN:

We commend the Chairman in his aggressive pursuit of PLAN. Based in San Francisco, we understand the importance of having an emergency communications plan in place. Once PLAN is implemented in California, in the case of an earthquake, residents and visitors alike will have access to free, up-to-date emergency information that will help them survive the quake all made possible by Chairman Genachowski’s leadership in partnership with the wireless companies.

-Erin Lehane, Chairperson, CALinnovates

Attention Congress: We Need More Phone Spectrum, And Soon

Written By Lawrence J. Spiwak
Forbes
http://www.forbes.com/sites/ericsavitz/2011/05/04/attention-congress-we-need-more-phone-spectrum-and-soon/2/

Americans love their mobile devices. With the rapid adoption of smartphones and tablets, the amount of data transmitted across mobile devices has exploded by 8,000% in four years on some networks, and experts expect demand to continue to increase exponentially over the coming years. However, as we demand more wireless broadband, the amount of spectrum available for these uses is rapidly becoming crowded, to the point where engineers are beginning to speak of “spectrum exhaustion.” So as consumers switch from traditional mobile voice service to 4G broadband services, not only do providers need more spectrum, but this spectrum needs to be made available in large, contiguous blocks in order to maximize spectral efficiencies and to minimize network deployment costs.

It Takes Space

I have to admit, for awhile, I was one of the nearly 80 percent of American’s who didn’t know what people were talking about when they talked about the cloud.  I knew it wasn’t a meteorological reference but that was about as far as I got and then one day I visited the cloud-no plane or rocket ship necessary.

The particular cloud I visited is just outside Sacramento, a place ironically, in the meteorological sense, is rarely cloudy.  The cloud is actually an incredible physical place that pretty much all of us visit, virtually, on a daily basis.  Salesforce.com: pretty much invented the cloud. Amazon: it’s in thecloud.  Netflix: it’s in the cloud. Facebook, yup, in the cloud.  But the cloud isn’t in actuality, in a cloud; it’s real bricks and mortar, and lots of it.  Acres of huge, high tech, high security servers are in fact thecloud-many of them with their own power generation and military-styled security and defense.  It turns out, the cloud, unlike its metrological namesake, takes up a hell of a lot of room.

Though our computers have gotten so small that I can do virtually anything I have to on my phone, the amount of infrastructure needed to support technology has grown.  Like the cloud, the build-out of all technology infrastructure takes space.  Don’t like our carbon footprint? Well, neither do I, but recognize that solar power takes space-we’re talking hundreds, if not thousands of acres of land to produce solar power at utility scale.  Like your cell phone to work wherever you are?  I do, especially at times of emergency but that takes cell sites, and lots of them statewide to provide what can literally be a life saving service.  And yes, AT&T’s new IP network, if approved, is going to take some space on city sidewalks to provide this platform that will at the onset provide a fancy, smancy new home entertainment option and a lightening fast platform for developers who are already working on how to best utilize this new technology.

As technology advances, so do the platforms we need to support it.  I am willing to give up a bunch of land in the desert to reduce our dependence on coal and foreign oil.  I am willing to give up my unblemished sightlines so that cell service can be far reaching when I need it most.  And, next Tuesday, as additional fiber optics are considered by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, we’ll find out whether San Francisco is willing to give up a little space in order to take advantage of this new technology.

All it takes is a little space.

DiFi takes on the Pirates

The Internet is being flooded with pirates that put Californians’ intellectual property at risk.  I don’t have to tell you, but the entertainment industry itself employs hundreds of thousands in California, and it’s not just in LA.  Emeryville hosts the creative geniuses behind Toy Story 3 at the Pixar Animation Studio and George Lucas spent an estimated $350 million for his digital arts studio in the Presidio.  Not to mention the up-and-coming studios and production facilities that are in the City employing multitudes of producers, editors and actors.

So what, beyond Pirates of the Caribbean 4, do pirates have to do with California’s entertainment industry?  Plenty.  As you read this, pirated copies of new movies will have virtually flooded the Internet.  For example, Cisco predicts that by 2014 it will take more than two years to watch the video that will cross the global IP network every second. Of this mind-boggling amount of video, a large part of it is unauthorized video content stolen from California studios. In fact, the Motion Picture Industry of America estimates that it loses over $25 billion a year to piracy.

What does this mean for California?  In its most simplistic terms, it means lost opportunity for jobs and investment.  The studios are faced with a tough recession, and, the popular wisdom that the industry is recession proof is being challenged in light of studio consolidations and release numbers.  If the industry is bleeding billions of dollars to pirates, that’s money it could be otherwise investing in movie-making, and, consequentially job-making.  The Internet marketplace has provided opportunity like we could never have imagined for the entertainment industry and innovators across the state but it also has created an opportunity for very costly mischief.  As a state, and as a nation, we need to arm the federal government with the tools it needs to take on those who seek to unfairly and unlawfully profit from the labors of California’s best and brightest.

Senator Patrick Leahey recently sponsored a bill, S.3804, the “Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act” that was co-sponsored by our own Senator Dianne Feinstein that will do just that.  It gives the feds an expedited means to take on rogue websites whose business model it is to facilitate the digital theft of copyrighted works.  Last week, a large, and diverse cross-section, of the Internet marketplace wrote a letter to Senator Leahey supporting swift passage of S.3804, including Sony Music Entertainment, Disney, NBC Universal, and Major League Baseball (Go Giants!).   CALinnovates would like to echo their support on behalf of our membership of California innovators and specifically to thank Senator Feinstein for her support of California innovation against the very real, and not very cute, threat of piracy.

Strong and Wide Support for Chairman Genachowski’s Open Internet Framework

“President Obama is strongly committed to net neutrality in order to keep an open Internet that fosters investment, innovation, consumer choice, and free speech.  The announced action by FCC Chairman Genachowski, building on the work of Chairman Waxman’s collaborative effort to craft legislation in this area, advances this important policy priority.”

— Aneesh Chopra, CTO, White House, December 1, 2010
“The Communications Workers of America supports Chairman Genachowski’s initiative to sustain open Internet principles and create the stable conditions necessary for critical investment and quality job creation in broadband networks.”

— Larry Cohen, President, CWA, December 1, 2010
“We commend Chairman Genachowski for recognizing that the time to act is now. The Internet is and should remain a medium that is open to innovation, not one where big network operators get to pick winners and losers.  This rulemaking is about preserving the characteristics that have made the Internet such an overwhelming success.”

— Leslie Harris, President, Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT), December 1, 2010. CDT is a non-profit public interest organization working to keep the Internet open, innovative, and free

“Maintaining an Open Internet is critical to our economy’s growth and Chairman Genachowski and his team deserve kudos for their thoughtful leadership. This effort is a pragmatic balance of innovation, economic growth and crucial investment in the Internet. We look forward to working with FCC to protect these principles so the Internet grows and thrives for generations to come.”

— John Doerr, Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers is a venture capital firm that has backed entrepreneurs in over 500 ventures, including AOL, Amazon, Citrix, Compaq, Electronic Arts, Genentech, Google, Intuit, Juniper Networks, Netscape, Sun, Symantec, Verisign and Zynga.

“As the founder of Craigslist and a passionate believer in the economic and social benefits of an open and free Internet, I proudly endorse the Chairman’s historic efforts to protect these important principles in our society. Common-sense rules of the road will help ensure certainty in markets while also preserving the openness and freedom of the Internet that has helped generate millions of jobs and share billions of ideas around the world.

— Craig Newmark, Founder, Craigslist, December 1, 2010.

“I am proud to join a diverse coalition in support of the Chairman’s proposed rules of the road. This light-touch, common-sense framework will help protect investment and innovation throughout the ecosystem and will ensure certainty in markets for years to come.”

— Ron Conway, Founder, SV Angel, December 1, 2010.  SV Angel is a Silicon Valley technology angel venture fund.

“We applaud the work of the Chairman Genachowski and FCC on this draft Open Internet framework.  Chairman Genachowski has offered a quality framework that hits the right balance between encouraging investments, fostering innovation and protecting consumers in a manner that is both transparent and enforceable.”

— Rey Ramsey, President and CEO of TechNet.  TechNet is the national, bipartisan network of more than four hundred CEOs. Its members represent more than one million employees in the fields of information technology, biotechnology, e-commerce and finance.

“Today ADE commends the FCC for embracing this spirit, rejecting partisan bickering and choosing mainstream compromise over extreme action in the debate over net neutrality. Today’s announcement shows that thoughtful debate on policy can lead to solutions that uphold our commitment to preserving the open Internet while maintaining a focus on the priorities of the American people:  restoration of our economy and a solution to creating jobs.”

— Shirley Franklin, Senior Advisor, Alliance for Digital Equality (ADE), December 1, 2010.  The Alliance for Digital Equality (ADE) is a non-profit consumer advocacy organization that serves to facilitate and ensure equal access to technology in underserved communities.

“We believe that today’s net neutrality proposal from the FCC represents an important step forward.  It’s vital for net neutrality regulations to promote new investments by network operators to increase broadband speeds, while also ensuring that consumers easily can access content and services from both start-up and established companies with the necessary quality of service and at the highest speeds available.”

— Statement by Fred Humphries, Microsoft, December 1, 2010.

“We applaud Chairman Genachowski for his leadership in moving forward with a balanced approach in the face of the heightened polemics on this issue…[t]he FCC’s policy position represents a fair middle ground that will provide regulatory certainty to an issue that has been lacking it since the Comcast decision last spring.”

— Dean Garfield, CEO, Information Technology Industry Council (ITI), December 1, 2010.  ITI is an advocacy group representing global leaders in innovation–from all areas of the ICT sector including hardware, services, and software.

“We … urge you to bring the Open Internet rulemaking to conclusion …the Commission can provide the certainty necessary for policymakers, consumers, investors, and innovators that the Internet will remain an open network, under the watchful eye of the Federal Communications Commission, and that the service will be delivered and managed with full and complete transparency.  Combined, that will make it possible for the agency, advocates, engineers, and the media to police practices that could threaten innovation at the edge of the network. … We understand that there are some who would have you go further and some that would have you do nothing.  But we believe you are headed toward a principled center and we support that effort.”

— Senators John F. Kerry, Byron Dorgan and Ron Wyden, November 30, 2010.

“As an early-stage investor with deep ties to the technology community, I applaud Chairman Genachowski’s proposed framework to protect a free and open Internet. Nothing is more important to America’s economic future than the protection of a free and open Internet, and I am confident that Chairman Genachowski’s proposed framework will achieve just that.”

— Ram Shiram, Founder, Sherpalo Ventures, December 1, 2010. Sherpalo is a venture capital firm that supports the development and commercialization of technology companies.

“If you believe in the need to protect the open Internet, this is the realistic way forward, and it could lay the groundwork for other steps if necessary in the future.”
— Kevin Werbach, Professor, Wharton School of The University Of Pennsylvania, December 1, 2010.

“We commend the Federal Communications Commission for tentatively putting open Internet rules on the agenda for the Dec. 21 Commission meeting and for, we expect, circulating a draft order.  As Comcast’s recent actions have shown, such rules are urgently needed.”

— Gigi B. Sohn, President and Co-founder Public Knowledge, December 1, 2010

“We are pleased that the FCC appears to be embracing a compromise solution that is sensitive to the dynamics of investment in a difficult economy and appears to avoid over-regulation. … Such an approach would reduce regulatory uncertainty, and should encourage investment and innovation in next generation broadband services and technologies.  In that regard, we remain committed to working with the FCC to bring the benefits of broadband to all Americans.”

— Jim Cicconi, AT&T, December 1, 2010.

“As a technology venture capitalist representing hundreds of millions of dollars in investment, I strongly support your proposed rules to protect an open and free Internet….your proposal will help incubate growth for decades to come and should be adopted without further delay.”

— Jed Katz, Managing Director, Javelin Venture Partners, December 1, 2010.  Javelin Venture Partners is an early stage venture capital firm specializing in technology based start-ups.

“DISH Network applauds Chairman Genachowski for moving forward on critically important net neutrality rules.  His proposal is a solid framework for protecting the open Internet”.
— Charles Ergen, Chairman, President and CEO, Dish Network, December 1, 2010.

“Today’s announcement by the FCC represents a prudent and balanced approach to managing the growing volume of traffic on the Internet.  IBM will continue to work with others in the IT industry as this process moves forward to support fair and reasonable rules that will encourage continued investment in smarter systems in the United States.”

— Christopher Padilla, Vice President, Government Programs, IBM, December 1, 2010.

“FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski deserves a lot of credit for proceeding so thoughtfully and choosing a commonsense compromise in the face of hyper-partisan brinksmanship.”

— David Sutphen, Co-Chair, Internet Innovation Alliance (IIA), December 1, 2010. The Internet Innovation Alliance is coalition of business and non-profit organizations that aim to ensure every American has access to broadband Internet.
“Today’s proposal seems to be the most effective option for reducing regulatory uncertainty in the broadband marketplace, enabling more widespread investment and deployment that will ultimately benefit consumers and our economy.”

— Bruce Mehlman, Co-Chair Internet Innovation Alliance (IIA), December 1, 2010. The Internet Innovation Alliance is coalition of business and non-profit organizations that aim to ensure every American has access to broadband Internet.

We understand and are pleased that the proposed rules have moved away from broad Title II regulation and toward a more tailored approach that recognizes the unique nature of wireless services. … We believe significant input from a bipartisan majority of Congress and others, and the willingness of the Chairman to seek a workable solution, have contributed toward making the proposed rules less onerous. … [W]e appreciate the Chairman’s attempt to find a way forward on this issue that recognizes the need to create certainty in the market and facilitate investment.”

— Steve Largent, President and CEO, CTIA-The Wireless Association, December 1, 2010
“We applaud Chairman Genachowski for supporting a measured, forward-looking policy framework that recognizes the dynamic nature of the telecom ecosystem and the importance of continued investment, job creation and innovation in the vibrant communications sector. We appreciate Chairman Genachowski’s leadership, commitment and support for continued growth and opportunity for consumers, technology innovators and workers, and investors in the communications sector and throughout the U.S. economy.”

— Jonathan Spalter, Chairman, Mobile Future Coalition, December 1, 2010.  The Mobile Future Coalition is coalition of businesses, non-profit organizations and individuals advocating for an environment in which innovations in wireless technology and services are enabled.

“We believe that it is a fair resolution of this set of issues and that it is proposed in a way that achieves our essential and shared objectives:  preserving the openness of the Internet and the incentives to invest and innovate for the benefit of consumers.  And I want to thank and applaud Chairman Genachowski, his Chief of Staff, Eddie Lazarus, and their staff for listening, for their hard work on incredibly complex business and technology issues, and for their leadership in seeking a fair resolution of a difficult and controversial set of policy goals.”

— NCTA President & CEO Kyle McSlarrow, President and CEO, NCTA, December 1, 2010.  NCTA is the principal trade association for the U.S. cable industry, representing cable operators serving more than 90 percent of the nation’s cable television households.

“We are happy to see that the Chairman appears to have…[struck] a balance between supporting growth in the tech sector and consumer protection. On behalf of our membership of hundreds of California innovators, we are happy to support the Chairman.”

— Erin Lehane, Executive Director, CALinnovates, December 1, 2010.  CALinnovates represents 150 technology companies and is focused on championing the conversation about the future of California’s critical technology sector.

CALinnovates Applauds FCC Approach Towards Middle Ground on Net Neutrality

For Immediate Release:
December 1, 2010

Contact:
Erin Lehane
(415) 494-8626 x102
erin@calinnovates.org

San Francisco, CA — CALinnovates, a California technology coalition, announced its support of FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski’s new approach towards the divisive issue of net neutrality.

“The issue of net neutrality had turned into an argument of extremes, this made our membership very nervous. Any regulation of the Internet is ‘make it or break it’ and during these tough economic times, we needed any proposed regulation to definitely not break it” stated Erin Lehane, Executive Director of CALinnovates.

“Innovation requires an environment that is supportive and not restrictive in order to grow as it has” said Lehane. “Extremist reactionary politics are not good for this growth-not in California nor around the country. We are happy to see that the Chairman appears to have chosen the high road, which also happens to be the middle of the road, and strike a balance between supporting growth in the tech sector and consumer protection. On behalf of our membership of hundreds of California innovators, we are happy to support the Chairman and his now proven ability to move past the extreme politics which have dogged this issue.”

For more information on CALinnovates please go to www.calinnovates.org; http://www.facebook.com/#!/CALinnovates and http://twitter.com/CALinnovates.

CALinnovates is a statewide coalition focused on championing the conversation about the future of California’s critical technology sector. CALinnovates brings together industry experts, thought leaders, tech innovators, policy makers and consumers in a nonpartisan mission to promote innovation, create new jobs, spur investment and support tech-friendly policies.

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