UPDATE: Voting is now over. Click here for the results.
In past years, Fierce has published a list of the 25 people we think are the most powerful in the telecom industry. In 2014, for example, we selected FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler as the industry’s most powerful person, mainly because of his efforts to impose net neutrality guidelines on internet service providers. Before that, we selected Tim Cook as the industry’s most powerful person, largely due to the company’s success with the iPhone.
This year we’re taking a different tack. For 2016, we’re letting you decide who is the most powerful person in the telecom industry. Every day this week we’re going to run a new round of voting in a tournament-style bracket, and by Monday we’ll announce the winner. We’re going to use Polldaddy.com for the actual voting, and repeated voting is going to be prohibited with a block to cookies and IP addresses. (For you sports fans out there, the seedings are mostly random and don't indicate favorites; we were more interested in creating exciting first-round matchups.)
The bracket is below, and below that are the actual matchups that you can vote on (polls on this round close at 12 p.m. Eastern time Tuesday Dec. 13).
So how should you determine who is the “most powerful” person in the telecom industry? That’s up to you. You can vote based on the number of actual end users each executive counts at his or her company, or by the amount of cash they spend in a given year, or by the types of transactions they’ve attempted or closed, or by the innovations they’ve brought to market. Maybe it’s just someone you admire. It’s up to you.
Article updated Dec. 14 to correct the day that the final winner will be published.