Comcast Believes In FCC Authority When It Suits Comcast; Otherwise? Not So Much

from the well,-you-see,-it-all-depends-on-who's-asking dept

Does Comcast believe the FCC has authority over its traffic shaping efforts? Well, it may just depend on who’s asking. When the FCC asserted that it did have a say in regulating Comcast’s traffic shaping efforts, Comcast emphatically stated that the FCC’s authority does not extend that far. And, technically, Comcast is probably correct that it would be an overreach of the FCC’s mandate — though the FCC clearly disagrees.

Still, when defending itself against a lawsuit in California over the very same traffic shaping, Comcast has convinced a judge to suspend the lawsuit by noting that the FCC has clear authority over these matters:

This issue “i.e., the reasonableness of a broadband provider’s network management practices” has, however, been firmly placed within the jurisdiction of the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”), an administrative agency whose authority to regulate internet broadband access companies’ services is well-established.

That seems like a quote that could come back to haunt Comcast. Either way, it looks like the FCC is about to show Comcast who’s boss. Reports are coming out that Kevin Martin is about to slap down Comcast for its traffic shaping. This should come as little surprise to anyone. If you’re playing the home game, recognize that if the question concerns cable companies, Martin will rule against them. If it involves a telco, Martin will rule in favor of them.

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