Re: cr> alternative delivery systems


Sender: "Audrie Krause" <•••@••.•••>

Arun wrote:

<The Telecom Regulation Act is now law, with wide bipartisan
<support. I don't see anyone attempting a major rollback, only
<relatively peripheral issues (with respect to the central issue of
<deregulation) such as the CDA. So, instead of getting nostalgic over
<the old system, shouldn't we be looking at the new law to see how we
<might make the best of it?

Perhaps some background on the politics of the telco bill would be

First, the bill had wide bipartisan support because it was bought
abd paid for by the big telco interests.  Check back issues of the
Telcom Post (on CPSR's web page) for a report on contributions by
telco and other interests to key members of Congress. There is a
public interest group in Washington, D.C., that tracks this stuff,
and I believe the Telcom Post report was based on the info they
compiled from public records.

Second, this bill was before Congress for several years before it
finally passed.  Neither the internet community nor the computer
industry paid much attention to it until nearly the end.  The
computer industry is apparently only now beginning to understand
that denial is not a useful corporate policy for dealing with
political realities.  Telcos, the cable industry and the entertainment
industry pour millions of dollars into lobbying; the computer
industry spends little, although some companies are beginning to
understand why it's in their interest to do so.

Third, the telco bill was opposed by every legitimate public
interest organization active on these issues.  Its passage was a
major defeat for the public interest community. The few crumbs
that the bill included for public interest concerns -- discounts for
libraries and schools, for example -- won't have much positive

So while I agree with Arun that we need to figure out how to make the
best of the new law, I also think we should be working to make
people aware that they've just been shafted by the people they
elected to represent them!


Audrie Krause     * Executive Director *    CPSR

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