the help of both sides of the network neutrality debate, the FCC continues to
search for a legislative answer to its broadband oversight questions.
a meeting with representatives of Google, Skype and the Open Internet Coalition
earlier this week, Edward Lazarus, chief of staff to FCC Chairman Julius
Genachowski, met Tuesday (July 13) with National Cable & Telecommunications
Association President Kyle McSlarrow, AT&T SVP James Cicconi and Verizon
EVP Tom Tauke about "details relating to prospective legislation regarding
open Internet principles," according to an ex parte filing with the
specifics included: "Prohibitions on blocking legal content and
interfering with attachment of non-harmful devices; possible legislative
language for a nondiscrimination principle; treatment of specialized services;
transparency of broadband Internet service performance and network management
practices; an enforcement regime to protect consumers; and application of some
aspect of the principles to wireless platforms."
a solution that industry and network neutrality fans could sign off on
and legislators would pass, no small feat, would clarify the intent of
Congress, which the FCC is attempting to interpret through the chairman's
"third way" proposal for reclassifying broadband under some portions
of Title II common carrier regulations.
issue arose after a federal court ruled that the FCC had not sufficiently
justified its statutory authority to sanction Comcast for blocking BitTorrent
peer-to-peer file uploads.
meeting Tuesday came only two days before initial comments are due at the FCC
on that "third way" and other options for clarifying its authority.
with McSlarrow, Tauke and Cicconi, Richard Whitt of Google and Markham Erickson
of the Open Internet Coalition have emerged as major players in the effort to
reach some accord on targeted legislation that would clarify the FCC's
authority to regulate network management and access.