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FCC Martin proposes corporate welfare for Google in 700 MHz auction
Submitted by Scott Cleland on Tue, 2007-07-10 12:47
According to DowJones, FCC Chairman Kevin Martin is proposing some of the net neutrality/open access regulation that Google requested for 22 of the 60 MHz of prime 700 MHz of spectrum to be auctioned off by the FCC in early 2008 for use in about 2010.
I have three points to make about Chairman Martin's reported net neutrality/open access proposal.
I. Corporate welfare for Google:
Bottomline: FCC Chairman Martin's net neutrality regulation conditions amount to a multi-billion corporate welfare subsidy grant to Google, because the proposed rules apparently are specifically rigged to benefit Google's Open Internet Coalition.
II. Nextwave Fiasco II? Another big problem with these proposed rules is that Chairman Martin clearly did not learn from the Nextwave spectrum fiasco; and those that don't learn from the past are doomed to repeat it.
III. Regulating part of the Internet: Chairman Martin's backdoor regulation of this part of the Internet will also have a big problem with the Bush Administration, the Federal Trade Commission, and free marketeers who oppose regulation and taxation of the Internet.
Proposing net neutrality/open access regulations for part of the Internet also goes completely against the Federal Trade Commission's recent 170 page report on net neutrality which declared on pages 11 and 160:
The big question for Chairman Martin is does he disagree with the FTC? What are the anti-competitive problems Chairman Martin is trying to solve that the FTC missed?
It seems from the quotes from the FTC report below, as if the FTC was speaking directly to Chairman Martin and he didn't listen.
Is Chairman Martin stiff-arming the FTC and showing them that he will defend his policy turf?
It will be interesting to see how this market manipulation plays out. At this point, it certainly smells bad.