FCC Forms 'Technology Transitions Policy Task Force'
The Federal Communications Commission today announced the formation of a new group that will oversee the transition of the United States' existing analog circuit-switched networks to all-digital, packet-switched IP networks. The group is called the Technology Transitions Policy Task Force, and is being led by Sean Lev and Rebekah Goodheart. "The task force will play a critical role in answering the fundamental policy question for communications in the 21st century," said FCC chairman Julius Genachowski. "In a broadband world, how can we best ensure that our nation's communications policies continue to drive a virtuous cycle of innovation and investment, promote competition, and protect consumers?" The group will pay attention to the broadband needs of businesses and consumers alike, and will have a particular focus on voice and wireless services. It will also set the resiliency requirements of communications networks for the next 100 years. Genachowski remarked, "Many of the Commission's existing rules draw technology-based distinctions. So the ongoing changes in our nation's communications networks require a hard look at many rules that were written for a different technological and market landscape." The task force will not only oversee the technology, but also the policy that governs the technology moving forward. The idea was first proposed earlier this year by Commissioner Ajit Pai, who said, "[This] is a big deal. Without question, the legal and policy challenges involved will be substantial, as will be the demands on our talented staff. But so too could be the rewards. If we get this right—if we can establish a modern, deregulatory framework for the dynamic, competitive IP world—innovation will flourish, infrastructure investment will increase, and American consumers will benefit even more fully from the bounty of the digital age."
Not as good as it sounds.