FCC Deregulation Decision Expected To Favor Bells; Not As Much As Powell Wants

from the almost,-but-not-quite dept

Well, they certainly took their sweet time. For months now people have been talking about what the FCC was going to do with regards to deregulating the Baby Bells – with specific focus on whether or not they’d still be required to lease their lines to competitors. A ruling was expected last week, until FCC chairman Michael Powell realized he didn’t have the votes he thought he did. He postponed the ruling a week (until its legal deadline), but apparently hasn’t been able to convince anyone to change their minds. The ruling is expected to be released this morning, and Powell may issue a “dissent”, which would be the first FCC ruling with a chairman’s dissent in over a decade. The ruling, as it stands now, would give the deregulation power to the states. Powell was hoping for more complete deregulation from the federal level. I’m sure there will be plenty of articles dissecting what this decision really means – and, I’m sure both sides will make compelling arguments why the decision is either correct or a disaster waiting to happen. Update: Well, the FCC did, indeed, do what everyone expected.

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