NRB Supports Congressional Oversight in Broadband Regulation

Religious broadcasters want Congress to clarify FCC's authority
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Religious
broadcasters apparently have faith in Congress. As the FCC comments on Title II
regulation of broadband piled up Thursday (the FCC deadline for initial
comments), the National Religious Broadcasters weighed in in support of
Congress stepping in to clarify the FCC's broadband authority.

"The
FCC should await statutory authority from Congress before seeking to exert new
and broad regulatory powers over the Internet," the association said.

While
a federal appeals court said the FCC had failed to adequately defend its
authority to regulate broadband under its Title I information service
definition it applies to Internet access, it did not say that was impossible.
NRB says that if the FCC wants to keep the clarification in-house, it should
stick with Title I.

NRB
argues that it is possible to regulate the net under that information services
definition, and that the FCC still has "at least in the abstract, an
ancillary jurisdictional basis to provide a very narrow range of regulatory
measures regarding the Internet," under its current Title I definition.

Suggesting
Title II is inappropriate and an overreach, NRB says Title I should be
sufficient to give the FCC the "narrow but important authority to insure that Internet 'gatekeepers' do not
block consumer web communications because of objections over the religious
content of those communications. If the Commission desires more jurisdictional
authority over the Internet than this, then it must seek it expressly from
Congress.

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