Sunday, April 30, 2006

We wouldn't want to stifle innovation, would we?

Here's telco lobbyist Walter McCormick, Jr. -- head of the U.S. Telecom Association -- speaking to lawmakers recently on the topic of network neutrality :

Our industry has stated that it will not block, impair or degrade consumer access to the Internet, and the FCC has made it clear that it has the authority to enforce its broadband principles... Therefore, we believe that legislation in the area is premature. Any grants of new regulatory authority or statutory ambiguities could chill innovation and investment.

We wouldn't want to chill innovation and investment, would we? Unfortunately, McCormick's logic has all the intellectual rigor of an Art Schlicter ethics class.

Instead, there's pretty clear evidence emerging that the telcos' plans to eradicate neutrality are already stifling Internet innovation:

...Blair Levin, analyst with Stifel Nicolaus: "Right now, I would never invest in a business model that depended on protection from Net neutrality,"

The only innovation-destroying aspect to this whole debacle is the telcos' unwillingness to invest more in R&D than on lobbyists.

Let's remember Mr. McCormick's promises -- along with his sudden inability to articulate his bold statements as proposed law.

Hollywood Reporter: Walter McCormick's Promise

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