Mar 17

Following the Release of the FCC’s National Broadband Plan Yesterday, Chairman Julius Genachowski Sat Down for an Interview on YouTube

Following the release of the FCC’s National Broadband Plan yesterday, Chairman Julius Genachowski sat down for an interview on YouTube National Broadband Plan Wrap-Up By Brad

A sampling of online chatter following yesterday’s release of the National Broadband Plan. First up, the Huffington Post:

Among the cornerstones of the plan is a ‘shoot for the moon’ goal of connecting 100 million U.S. households to 100 megabits per second broadband service over the next decade. Goals of this ambition require an unshakable policy foundation that is unequivocally supportive of investment. This means the many rule-makings that likely flow out of this plan must be cohesive in nature—pulling in the same constructive and unifying direction and staying true to the Chairman’s early and firm commitment to fact-based, data-driven decisions.

From Business Week:

If the U.S. military ranked 17th in the world, you can bet that as a nation we would make strengthening our armed forces a national priority. Yet that’s just how the U.S. stacks up against the rest of the world in terms of access to high-speed Internet connections. The vital communications systems that make our economy work and serve as a platform for business innovation and social interactions are second-class. Sadly, many of us have accepted that.

It’s time to overcome our broadband complacency. The national broadband plan sent to Congress on Mar. 16 by the Federal Communications Commission is critical to our economic and national security. Without a plan, we simply cannot compete.

The L.A. Times:

The FCC’s plan calls for a dramatic expansion of affordable, high-speed Internet. A chief goal is to ensure that at least 100 million homes have access to networks that allow data downloads at speeds at least 20 times faster than what most networks now deliver.

The bulk of the recommendation can be enacted by the FCC, such as diverting money from a fund for affordable phone service to rural areas to be used for increasing broadband access.

But Congress would have to act on others, particularly changing rules for federal auctions of federal airwaves to entice some broadcasters to give up their spectrum so the airwaves could be used for wireless Internet access.

USA Today:

FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn criticized the recommendation to coax, and possibly force, television broadcasters to give up some airwave spectrum. The plan aims to increase broadband competition by boosting the amount of spectrum for wireless Internet services to 500 MHz from 50 MHz.

She said that “it is certainly possible, if not likely” that the few minority-owned stations likely would be among the first to sell their spectrum. She says she would find a policy that further diminished that number to be “untenable.”

The Wall Street Journal:

The FCC report suggests that 100 million U.S. homes—of a total 112 million—should have “affordable access” to 50 megabit per second Internet service in five years. That’s about 10 times faster than most homes get today. But the plan doesn’t define affordable.

Nor does it offer a specific recipe for its aim. The FCC says it will ultimately propose dozens of new rule changes to enact some of the ideas in Tuesday’s report.

The New York Times:

The broadband proposal, which the agency sent to Congress on Tuesday, “is necessary to meet the challenges of global competitiveness, and harness the power of broadband to help address so many vital national issues,” the agency chairman, Julius Genachowski, said in a statement.

President Obama said the plan recalled the way “past generations of Americans met the great infrastructure challenges of the day, such as building the transcontinental railroad and the Interstate highways.”

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