Report: FCC chief wants broadband to stay deregulated

Although he has yet to announce his official position on net neutrality, sources say Federal Communications Chairman Julius Genachowski is likely to leave unchanged the agency's current minimally invasive attitude toward broadband regulation, the Washington Post reports. Citing unnamed sources, the Post says Genachowski still is likely to try and exert some FCC control over broadband policy, but is likely to keep it to a minimum.

Early speculation had Genachowski attempting to reclassify broadband under rules that would allow the FCC to oversee it as it would telephone and cable services, but, the Post reports, he now sees that move as likely to deter investment at a time when the agency is pushing for major broadband growth, and as unneeded baggage for carriers.

Regardless of what he decides, if Genachowski moves forward with any attempt to apply regulation to broadband services, he's likely to be met with opposition from the telecom industry, said Art Brodsky, a spokesman for Public Knowledge.

"The telephone and cable companies will object to any path the chairman takes," Brodsky said. "He might as well take the one that best protects consumers and is most legally sound."

Genachowski has yet to respond to a U.S. Court of Appeals ruling that the agency overstepped its authority in hitting Comcast with sanctions related to throttling P2P traffic in 2008. The case is seen as pivotal in the net-neutrality battle and could define the FCC's Internet role.

For more:
- see this WP article

Related articles:
Does cable control too much? Broadband, Pay TV issues drawing more legislative looks
BitTorrent CEO: The Internet has no regulator that can stand up to throttling
Comcast wins; Court says FCC has no authority to regulate broadband