A Regulatory Sea Change?

November 22nd, 2008 by · 1 Comment

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:

[poll id="11"]

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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Categories: Government Regulations · Old · Polls

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1 Comment, Add Yours!


  • fanfare says:

    I guess it depends on what Obama wants to do about the economy, and what he sees as potential catalysts toward that end. If he takes a good look at what a broadband driven economic push can really offer the U.S., then there is the possibility that he will dive in and get things moving. Lets face it, we don’t really have a lot of options that look very attractive, or that will bring positive changes (as in something that will jump-start a failing economy). Technology, based on an upgraded telecom world (and all that implies) could really be one very large piece of this puzzle. Not to sound too much like a broken record, but recall the highway system and what it did for our economy after WWII.

    New business ventures, innovative product/service ideas, distribution methods, and the overall excitement of a “new society” brought to us by some form of a disruptive/next gen infrastructure really tends to hit psychological buttons as well (who was it that said recession and depression were a result of “repression”?). I guess you could sum it up by saying “things get moving when society sees a new future based on new and exciting ways of doing things”. People beging to spend, businesses begin to innovate and build. IMO a next gen architecture that finally brings us all the wonderful services and products dreamed about since the late 90’s … along with what we have not even imagined to date, is our best bet for recovery. I’m sure some banker will tell me that we ‘first have to deal with the broken financial system, debt, etc’. I agree. But when we begin to prosper as a innovative society, we will have a better chance of fixing many of these problems. -I have a theory about how our society got pushed back into a ‘commodities-industrial based period.. and the greed from the “old regime”, but I won’t go into that.

    IMO Obama should focus on telecom and the technologies that function within that arena. We should be leading the world, we should be fostering innovation, and we should be moving fast,… forward.

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