FCC chair promises light touch with broadband regulation changes

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski sought to calm fears over the commission's plans to regulate broadband access as a telecommunications service rather than an information service so that it can impose net neutrality rules on broadband operators.

The move comes in the wake a federal appeals court ruling that concluded the FCC overstepped its authority in attempting to prevent Comcast's Internet throttling, an action that has thrown into disarray the commission's plans to codify net neutrality regulations.

In a statement issued on Thursday, Genachowski pledged to regulate the Internet with a light touch and assured that the commission will not apply strict price controls and competition mandates. The chairman called the reclassification of the commission's broadband authority an interim approach, and said he welcomed action from Congress to clarify the FCC's authority.

Reports leading up to the FCC's decision pegged Genachowski as favoring broadband regulation staying at status quo. But in order to avoid the consequences of the Comcast case, changes had to be made. However, that classification change may now spark multiple lawsuits from the broadband giants.

However, according to the report, Genachowski does hope to continue pushing net neutrality, but under a legal framework built on the current regulatory structure. The goal, according to the report, is to avoid what would likely be multiple lawsuits sparked by a reclassification effort.

For more:
- see this Reuters report

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