Saturday, July 31, 2004

FCC Roundtable on IP regulations

Pulver Slams Senate VoIP Vote
July 30, 2004 - By Roy Mark

WASHINGTON -- Internet telephony pioneer Jeff Pulver pulled no punches today in criticizing last week's vote by the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee vote to allow states to continue regulating Voice over IP (define) services.

Pulver, participating in a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) roundtable on IP regulations, called the vote a "bizarre, last-minute procedural maneuver" and vowed to lead the fight against it if the bill reaches the Senate floor for a full vote.


"This [bill] runs absolutely counter to the logic of the Pulver [FCC] order and only to serve the cyber roadside police agents," Pulver said.

If the notion to allow states to regulate VoIP prevails, Pulver said, "I think we should find a Caribbean island country" to move VoIP operations. "It would be a tremendous investment ... if this doesn't happen right in the U.S."

Although the bill has received widespread publicity, a Hill staffer closely associated with the legislation told earlier this week, "The bill is dead on arrival. It isn't going anywhere."


It's when the VoIP calls hit the PSTN that cash-strapped state regulators want to call Internet telephony a normal voice service and charge access fees. VoIP providers say they shouldn't be regulated like telephone carriers since they don't traffic in voice packets, contending VoIP is just an another software application like e-mail.

"And it isn't entirely all about the money," the Hill staffer said. "If eventually all voice traffic moves to the Internet, what will these people [state regulators] have left to regulate? They don't want to lose their power."


A June Merrill Lynch research report says in the first quarter of this year, broadband penetration, a critical factor in the deployment of VoIP services, reached 23.8 percent in the United States, with the strongest penetration rates driven by cable operators with VoIP deployments.

"We call it everything over IP," Glen Campbell, author of the report, told the FCC roundtable discussion. "Over time, we're going to see a complete separation of applications from the [underlying] networks."

Comments: Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?