FYI: IUC’s Telecom Alert [cr-960102]


Richard Moore

Date: Mon, 1 Jan 1996
Sender: •••@••.••• (El Tiburon)
Subject: Alert!  Last Chance to Protest Telco Bill

Internet Users Consortium - ALERT!  Sunday 12/31/95

The Telco Bill will be voted on after the Holidays. Last chance to have a voice.

Does anyone question the dangers of the Telco Bill? With its expected
passage, USWest raised the cost of individual ISDN lines by a factor of 3
($63 to $184). That is quite a jump. Even though Intel is fighting this, it
is obviously a direct repercussion of the Telco Bill.

What if you knew that major media distributors like Turner Broadcasting,
Cox Communications and TCI refused to air ads that came out against the
Telco Bill? You may go as far as thinking conspiracy. But when all is said
and done, one must admit that raises some questions about the ethics and
implications of this bill. One wonders the effects it will have on the

Will it raise the prices so much that only certain media and corporations
can afford to be on the Internet? What is called the Country Club Syndrome.
Keep out any unwanted elements by raising the costs involved. In effect we
will end up with cable TV on the Internet. We will have no control over
content and most distressing - no 'open content' public forums. Is this
what you want? It isnt what I want! Who told them they could vote for this
bill? It wasnt me - a taxpayer and voter. It must have been USWest and TCI
cable, et al.

In an excerpt from Howard Rheingold's, "Last Stop Before the Censorship
State" he states;

        Americans have one last chance before we lose the Net. If American
citizens write, call, and fax the President now and urge him to veto the
telecommunications deregulation bill, we might not lose an opportunity to
revitalize the democratic process and grow hundreds of thousands of small
Net-based businesses.

He also cites a few obvious problems with the bill and its promotion of
maintaining the balance of power in the hands of those who currently have

....This telecommunications bill encourages the concentration of ownership
of all news, entertainment, and communication media, institutes censorship
provisions... This bill allows rates to rise too high and too fast, is
generous with megacorporations and stingy with education, and it completely
ignores the
widening gap between information-rich and information-poor.
        Through months of committee debates and decisions, censors and
monopolists have won every battle over the future of the Internet. By
shamelessly exploiting legislators' and citizens' ignorance of the nature
of the Internet, a small group who are intent upon imposing their brand of
morality on everyone else,are about to silence a potentially powerful
medium for citizen-to-citizen communication, cripple American industries
trying to compete in global markets, and create a Federal bureaucracy with
the power to determine what is decent for citizens to say.

Yeah, sounds pretty fair so far. Fair for the formation of a centralization
of power, once again. Get on those phones and call your senator/rep and the
president. The vote starts after the holidays.

Tell Clinton to tell Congress to try again, to cut the citizens of this
country into the deal, and to keep their hands off the Bill of Rights.
       Contact the White House right now:
        (202) 456-1414 Phone
        (202) 456-1111 Comment Line
        (202) 456-2461 Fax

NorthStar keeps you informed and on the lookout for the invasive legislation
the government enforces. If you want to stay informed about this issue and other
such invasive legislation, subscribe to NorthStar. NorthStar is the
biweekly e-zine of the Internet Users Consortium that gives you the story
from the perspectives of those who feel the full brunt of government abuse.
Corporate media devalues us in its pro-government portrayal of every news
tidbit. What's left out is how current legislation effects you and I - The
Internet Users. NorthStar is currently examining Key Escrow Encryption, Big
Brother's most frightening surveillance tool since the Telescreen.
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 Posted by Richard K. Moore (•••@••.•••) Wexford, Ireland
 Materials may be reposted in their entirety for non-commercial use.