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The Unfair “Fairness” Act

It is disingenuous to call something fair and equitable when it is clearly not. This is the case with both S. 698, the Marketplace Fairness Act of 2015 (MFA), and the Remote Transaction Parity Act (RTPA), introduced on June 15, 2015 by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah).

June 15, 2015 — Deborah Collier 1434393532

Finish Fixing Lifeline, Before Considering Expanding

In 2014, the Universal Service Fund (USF) collected approximately $8.5 billion to support telecommunications programs that include the Low Income support services, Lifeline and Link-Up programs; the High-Cost program; the Library and Schools program; and the Rural Health program. The funding for the USF is found in the charges on consumer’s communications bills as a hidden tax, known as the USF fee.

June 2, 2015 — Deborah Collier 1433271759

The Need for More Spectrum Auctions

A May 11, 2015 report from the Brattle Group estimates the value of the 645.5 MHz of licensed spectrum currently in use at almost $500 billion. Beyond the monetary value of this spectrum are the services provided to consumers using licensed spectrum through their mobile devices. According to the report, economists have estimated that the total social benefits achieved from using licensed spectrum are at least 10 to 20 times the direct economic value of the spectrum itself.

May 15, 2015 — Deborah Collier 1431721895

Capital Investments Don’t Happen Overnight Mr. Wheeler

On February 26, 2015, the three Democratic commissioners at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) made a monumental decision to regulate the Internet under Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. In other words, they thought it was a good idea to apply an 80 year-old statute intended to regulate the monopoly Bell telephone system to the most compelling and competitive communications and commercial system ever created.

March 3, 2015 — Deborah Collier 1425432736

Municipal Broadband Proposal Seeks to Overturn State Laws

The President continued his preview of the State of the Union address on January 14, 2015 by announcing that among the top priorities for this year will be “removing barriers” for faster Internet speeds.

January 14, 2015 — Deborah Collier 1421295263

Innovation = Jobs

Innovation creates jobs.

That is the central premise of Jay Walker’s keynote address, “Making Innovation Work for America and Americans,” at the first meeting of the IP Dealmakers Forum on November 6, 2014. The forum linked investors together with intellectual property (IP) information and opportunities.

November 17, 2014 — Thomas Schatz 1416273159

On Title II, Just Say No to FCC Overreach

Back in the 1980s, First Lady Nancy Reagan had a slogan to go with her anti-drug campaign, "Just Say No."  Perhaps this same slogan should be used in the ongoing debate over the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) efforts on net neutrality and Title II reclassification of the Internet.

November 10, 2014 — Deborah Collier 1415666320

Senate Plans Short-term Fix to Taxes on Internet Access

If Senator Harry Reid (D-Nev.) gets his way, taxes on Internet access and other discriminatory or duplicate taxes will only be staved off until 2015, rolling the final decision on whether to make it permanent or to attach other more controversial measures onto the bill either for consideration during a lame duck session or until next Congress.

July 24, 2014 — Deborah Collier 1406227693

House Passes Permanent Ban On Internet Taxes

Consumers across America are increasingly using the Internet to shop, apply for jobs, perform schoolwork, and email one another.  In 2012, the Federal Communications Commission found in its annual report on advanced communications capabilities that 95 percent of Americans have access to broadband Internet services.  According to the International Telecommunications Union, 84.2 percent of individuals in the U.S.

July 16, 2014 — Deborah Collier 1405540220

Tick Tock Goes The Clock – But H.R. 3086 Passes First Hurdle

On June 18, 2014, the House Judiciary Committee ordered reported to the House of Representatives by a vote of 30 to 4, H.R. 3086, the Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act.

June 18, 2014 — Deborah Collier 1403121159

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