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Vonage Also, Chairman Powell's vision for VoIP regulation (I really wish he wasn't leaving

Also, Chairman Powell's vision for Voip regulation (I really wish he wasn't leaving early, and if you absorb what he is saying, I think you'll understand that regulation in this case is designed to protect the rights of the consumer):

From New Telephony, "FCC's Powell: Let's Start a Revolution"
Posted on: 11/09/2004

Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Michael Powell called today for a "revolution," a dramatic change in how the United States regulates communication, one that recognizes the "unique character" of voice over IP and gives the federal government primary jurisdiction over voice over IP and other IP communication services.
Delivering the keynote at the Fall Voice on the Net (VON) conference in Boston, Mass., USA, Powell emphasized the change that is needed "is not an adjustment of regulations. It is nothing short of the future of electronic and optical communication for years to come, and we must get this right," adding, "I think it is wrong, just plain wrong, not to recognize the significant of voice over IP or to look at it through the glasses of the old regulatory model."

Powell said, "So here we are on the precipice of something big and, like the founding fathers, we have to decide where we stand. Will we have courage to stand boldly for change?"

"Our forefathers made a new constitution, one fitting the revolution," Powell said. "We too need a new constitution for the regulation of voice-over-IP services." Powell says a new regulatory scheme, in the form of a proposed rule-making, will be presented by the FCC, probably in the form of a proposed regulation, before the end of the year.

A Welcome Message
The industry audience at the conference interrupted Powell's speech several times with applause. Though the chairman has stated before that a unique new regulatory scheme is needed for voice over IP, today's speech was his most unequivocal that the new service must not be treated like the traditional phone system that it is in the process of replacing.

Particularly pleasing to the audience was his promise to assert federal jurisdiction. "The first step is for the commission to step forward and firmly attach federal jurisdiction. I will present to my colleagues that voice over IP should be under exclusive federal jurisdiction. We cannot avoid this question any longer." Some states and even a few municipalities have tried to assert their right to regulate voice over IP and, perhaps more disturbing to many in the industry, treat it like traditional phone service in their regulatory schemes.

Easier Said Than Done
Observers noted that Powell will have his hands full trying to institute his vision, given the recalcitrance of state public utilities commissions and the challenge of making congress understand why and how such new regulation should work. "It will be a real challenge, particularly with the state PUCs," said a lawyer for one of the incumbent carriers, speaking not for attribution.

Powell acknowledged the challenge, saying his first task will be to take on perhaps the most onerous and hotly debated regulatory issue today: intercarrier competition. Intercarrier compensation "was breaking before you showed up," he told the Voip industry audience. "There is a distortion in the common-carrier communication system. A lot of people are using the network in the same way but, because of a label on their foreheads, some pay totally differently, some are getting paid lot and some are paying enormous amounts. This is ridiculous, arbitrary and indefensible."

The solution he says is not to argue whether or not voice over IP should pay, "but rather that all those charges need to be graphed out and brought to a rational structure. So the market decides who wins, not a regulatory structure."

No Broadband Parasites
Powell bristled at a questioner who suggested that services operating on broadband infrastructure that they don't own are "broadband parasites." "I hate that term," he said. "The brilliance of the Internet is that applications should increasingly ride on IP architecture, and that they are unique and divorcable from the architecture."

For the consumers and businesses that use such a service there should be fundamental rights that protect their freedom to use services as they choose, Powell said.
-Consumers should have access to any legal content of choice.
-Consumers should have ability to run or use any applications of their choice
-Users should have the freedom to attach any device to the Internet
-There should be freedom to get any service information about a service of choice.

The FCC rule-making that Powell intends to drive will no doubt spark controversy. However, no matter what the outcome of the looming presidential election, Powell said, "I am fortunate that I have a term that runs until 2007, and we have a revolution to finish."

Unfortunately, he's decided to leave early. Hopefully whoever takes his place will make as much sense as he does.

Read The Full Thread:

Today''s outage - a case for regulation

Folks, if Vonage were actually a LEC, this outage would result in HUGE FCC penalties. As-is,
I think you are going to get flamed big time. :wink: No, seriously, the only
regulating them prob isnt the answer now, BUT making sure everyone who does have
They're accountable to their clients. If you aren't happy with their service,
They're accountable to their clients. If you aren't happy with their service,
Folks, if Vonage were actually a LEC, this outage would result in HUGE FCC penalties. As-is,
They're accountable to their clients. If you aren't happy with their service,
Short of having a contract which specifically spells out availability you are
If you pay me to provide a service to you, and I don't come through, are you just going
Of course, comments like this don't help: emphasis mine On another

ToddlerTN posted "Also, Chairman Powell's vision for VoIP regulation (I really wish he wasn't leaving" on 03/06/2005

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