Former FCC Chairmen Testify On Communications Act
January 16, 2014

At the end of 2013, Reps. Fred Upton (R-MI) and Greg Walden (R-OR) announced their intention to reform the Communications Act of 1996, saying the law is in need of an update due to changing technology. Yesterday (1/15), the House Communications and Technology Subcommittee, which is chaired by Walden, held its first hearing focused on the matter. Three former FCC Chairmen and one former Commissioner testified at the hearing, including Former Chairman Dick Wiley, Former Chairman Reed Hundt, Former Chairman Michael Powell, and Former Commissioner Michael Copps.

Former Chairman Wiley testified that history shows that innovation happens most when a light regulatory touch is applied. With regard to the update, he said, "I would suggest that the objective of a statutory rewrite should not be to legislate premised on the current state of the marketplace or even on predictions of what it may look like in the future. Instead, Congress should consider a flexible and technologically neutral framework that will be capable of adapting to technical invention and innovation, whatever it may prove to be."

Former Chairman Powell similarly suggested that any update to the law needs to provide a legal and regulatory framework that mirrors the "simplicity" that has allowed innovation to flourish over the past 20 years. "This market requires a greater degree of business flexibility, fewer prescriptive rules, and an assurance that any government involvement is applied on a technology-neutral basis and creates a better investment climate," said Powell. "Rather than dialog and debate around well-worn constructs like regulation and deregulation, free markets versus industrial policy, and competition and monopoly, we should talk more about simplicity – guiding our companies and our regulatory policies by the concept."

However, Hundt rejected the idea that the Act needs a rewrite, telling the panel, "If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it – and the FCC is not only not broken, but also it is a model example of agency government."
Copps sided with Hundt, blaming problems on "powerful industry efforts to undermine (the law) and... Commission decisions that too often aid and abet that effort. Our present statute has been interpreted and implemented in ways not originally intended and many of its constituent parts are still relevant, workable, and consumer-friendly. There is a statute to enforce, and putting that job on hold while we consider changing it is not a good option."

Video of the testimony can be seen on the Energy & Commerce Committee website here.




 
Breaking News
Amber Bouchard Joins WRFF (Radio 104.5)/Philadelphia As APD
Songs of Hope XII To Honor Pharrell with Clive Davis "Legend In Songwriter Award"
Benztown Named to Inc. 5000 for 4th Consecutive Year
August 24, 2016
Matt Bosso Named APD/MD At WODS/Boston
Sterling Simms Named UMPG Director of Creative
MIW Radio Group Names Beth Neuhoff The 2016 MIW Trailblazer
In Brief - August 23, 2016
August 22, 2016
Nielsen Audio Finds Los Angeles Metro Irregularities
iHeartMedia Salisbury-Ocean City, MD Names Dave Hovel SVP/Programming
Images from the 2016 iHeartMedia Music Summit
'Wake Up Call' Radio Host Welcomes Baby Boy
August 22, 2016
Jeff Smulyan Proposes to Take Emmis Private
WRVW (107.5 The River)/Nashville To Host Rooftop Pool Party With Demi Lovato & Nick Jonas
iHeartMedia Names Ryan McKiddy APD/MD At WSIX/Nashville
August 18, 2016
iHeartMedia Elevates Michael Preacher & Dave Carwile In North East Division
Bill Kelly To Join Cumulus Media As VP/Market Manager For Youngstown
iHeartRadio Surpasses 90 Million Registered Users
Three Broadcasting Execs Appointed to the Conclave Board of Directors
August 17, 2016
MSG Company Acquires 12% Stake in Townsquare Media
Scott Shannon To Host National Radio Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
Mike O’Brian Re-Signs With Beasley’s KKLZ/Las Vegas
August 16, 2016
Republic Records Restructures Promotion Department, Adds Key Executives
iHeartRadio Music Awards Returning in 2017
In Brief - August 16, 2016
Music News
Pandora Partners With Questlove
Quick Hits: MTV VMAs / DJ Khaled / Lukas Graham, ASAP Ferg
Quick Hits: Justin Timberlake / Trolls soundtrack, Metallica, Jimmy Eat World, Big Boi & Killer Mike, Empire of the Sun
Second Frank Ocean Release Arrives Over the Weekend
Quick Hits: Billboard 200, Bridge School Benefit, Lou Pearlman, Future, 3 Doors Down, Kings of Leon
Frank Ocean Releases "Visual Album" Endless
Lars Ulrich Talks New Metallica Record
Strange Days Indeed: An Interview with Garbage’s Shirley Manson
Metallica Announce New Album Hardwired...To Self Destruct
Drake Leads Nominees For BET Hip Hop Awards
Quick Hits: Kanye West, Lil Wayne
Paul McCartney Signs Worldwide Deal With Capitol Records
Lady Gaga Announces New Single, Cast in A Star Is Born
Quick Hits: Katy Perry, Nick Jonas / MTV VMAs, Tove Lo, Guns 'N Roses, Dawes
FMQB Photo Pass: 2016 Triple A Conference
FMQB NOW

          Question Of
           The Week

Advertisement:
Search FMQB.com
Advertisements:
FMQB Member Login
Email:
Pass:

Save
Not a member yet?
Sign up Now!
Sign Up for Breaking News!
Enter FMQB E-Tracking!