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25th Anniversary of FCC Decision Enabling Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

25th Anniversary of FCC Decision Enabling Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
A series of posts describing how this all came about. (Click on picture above)

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

New FCC Reform Website

Yesterday was the FCC Reform conference sponsored by The University of Colorado's Silicon Flatirons program and Public Knowledge. Much of the conference focused on the keynote paper by Phil Weiser, "FCC Reform and the Future of Telecommunications Policy". A new website on FCC reform has the paper, along with several responses including mine. The site allows you to make your own suggestions! (Perhaps taking a clue from the transition website.)
(Wikipedia photo)
Surf on over!

Here is a summary by Gigi Sohn of Public Knowledge of the ideas suggested for the new FCC by the conference speakers:
  • make policy decisions based on objective data and facts, not ideology and industry-purchased data;

  • engage in more strategic planning and be forthright about its policy goals;

  • restore procedural fairness, including, but not limited to stopping abuses of the ex parte rules, making sure Notices of Proposed Rulemaking actually propose rules, and issuing texts of decisions on the day the item is voted upon;

  • be more transparent in two ways: first, it must give the public more information about what decisions it is making, how it is making them and why; and it must allow for the public to have more meaningful input into the policymaking process. The former might necessitate revision of the Government in Sunshine Act, which requires public notice and a public meeting anytime more than two Commissioners meet at one time.

  • be reorganized into functions, not into technological silos;

  • be staffed with people whose mission is to promote the public interest, not to get a high paying job with industry;

  • be staffed with a diversity of expertise (e.g., more economists, technologists and real business people) and cultural experiences);

  • rely more on adjudication in enforcement matters where there are facts in dispute;

  • better balance the power between the Chair and the Commissioners;

  • develop and empower staff in a way that restores morale and makes them feel like vital players in the operation of the agency;

  • lead, listen and learn, particularly through input by the academic community;

  • ensure that every staff member has a clear role that promotes the agency’s policy goals; and

  • promote innovation.

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