Various articles have been popping up out there suggesting that along with the incoming Obama presidency will come a substantial change in the regulatory winds around Telecom. The Wall Street Journal yesterday went through a long list of Democrats in congress who have a historical interest in telecom regulation who will be ascending to positions where they might be able to act. Other speculation has Obama moving with lightning speed to reorganize the FCC. What do you think, is the tide coming in? Vote here:
Personally, I sort of doubt that anything will happen quickly. After all, this is the government we are talking about, the word ‘quickly’ has an entirely different meaning in Washington. Even if the FCC gets a new chairman right away, is it at all likely he or she will actually do anything about intercarrier compensation before the decade ends? I’ll believe it when I see it, court order or no court order. I suspect they won’t ever fix that one unless Obama threatens to put their meetings on YouTube and make them wear thongs.
And then there’s the matter of focus. Obama has only so much political capital to spend in his first hundred days in office. With the financial markets on life support, a war to end, and a few hundred executive orders to reverse, can we really expect telecom to rank high on the to-do list? Not that Don Gips won’t try of course, haha. I am sure we will manage to have hearings on net neutrality roughly monthly, even if the whole issue might be technologically moot by then.
I suspect that far too many people are projecting their own idea of ‘change’ onto the incoming administration and will be disappointed that he can’t be everyone to everybody. Not just telecom, it seems to happen every time we get a new president, probably because they do tend to promise everything under the sun during the campaign. But hey, my skepticism could be totally off the mark. Do you hear me Barack? Prove me wrong if you can!
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