Why Is Kevin Martin's Opinion On Net Neutrality Different When It's Comcast Than AT&T?

from the just-wondering dept

FCC chair Kevin Martin is well-known as a good friend to telco companies -- but that friendship has never extended to cable companies. That's why it's rather amusing to see him try to act tough against Comcast, suggesting last Friday that the FCC doesn't look kindly on Comcast's traffic shaping practices while just a year ago, he was telling AT&T that the FCC wouldn't stop them from doing the same thing, if AT&T decided it was necessary "for business reasons." Can anyone give a reasonable explanation (other than outright favoritism) for why Martin would hold cable companies to a different standard than telcos?


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    Rob, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 3:19am

    Maybe he had a change of heart.

     

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    A. L. Flanagan, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 4:01am

    Errr... Follow the money?

    (Just guessing)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 4:15am

    Because he's a spineless money-grubbing little sock-puppet of a man, that's why.

     

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    Genny Pershing, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 4:22am

    A la carte

    Because high on the Chairman's agenda was A LA CARTE which cable refused to give him - and he has had a vendetta ever since. Next would be the question of where A LA CARTE came from? Was this a rel right issue of a community getting sick of paying for Sex in the Siddy when what they really wanted to watch was the 24 hr Tammy Fay Baker channel.

     

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    James (profile), Mar 10th, 2008 @ 5:06am

    Looking for his next Job?

    It will be interesting to see what his next job is.

     

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    Overcast, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 6:33am

    He's a politician for all intents and purposes. It's just expected...

    I guess AT&T is paying them more?

     

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    KnowTheDude, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 6:38am

    No surprises

    Kevin has only 10 months to find a new job. He is universally hated by many (with the exception of Telcos). He is just trying to line up either a direct job with them, or a job with a firm (law firm) wanting a close relationship with AT&T.

    He is the worst FCC head in decades, and deserves nothing but foodstamps when his time is up.

     

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    Hans, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 7:13am

    Obviously...

    It's because AT&T bribed Kevin Martin, while Comcast did not.

    Oh wait, did I say bribed? What I really meant to say was that AT&T made some political contributions. Yeah, that's it.

     

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    DanC, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 7:43am

    I'm going to go with "Because he's a hypocrite" for the win.

     

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    Josh H, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 8:45am

    re: 9

     

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    Josh H, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 8:46am

    re: 9

    Considering he does not hold an elected office, it would be difficult for Martin to acquire any "legal" campaign contributions.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 8:51am

    Is Martin from texas?

    Is he? Is he? Martin must have helped out Bush somehow. Yee-haw! Business texas-style!

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 12:34pm

      Re:

      I believe Martin is from South Carolina.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 7:51pm

        Re: Re:

        > I believe Martin is from South Carolina.

        Wikipedia says he "served as the Deputy General Counsel to Bush-Cheney 2000, on the Bush-Cheney recount team in Florida."

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 8:54am

    AT&T typically doesn't compete with other telecoms, they do with cable companies.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 12:41pm

    I'm guessing a big factor is that Comcast wasn't using traffic shaping. They were forging TCP packets, not telling anyone they were doing it and denying they were doing it when asked about it. It's a little different than up front traffic shaping and is arguable illegal under several laws. They even tried lying to congress claiming this was common practice.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 10th, 2008 @ 6:29pm

    Why is it a Kevin Martin decision to make ?
    I thought what Comcast is doing is illegal and that the DA or the FBI should be involved.

    I dont think it is up to the FCC to decide when to prosecute and when to look the other way.

     

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    USWESTguy, Mar 11th, 2008 @ 5:03am

    It's because the cable companies are so entrenched (read monopolies). In the NE I'm paying over $115 for basic cable and VOIP. We need new players in the market, like att, to drive down the costs. It's a kind of telecom affirmative action.

     

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