GAO: FCC Gives Preferential Treatment To Lobbyists, Company-Sponsored Data

from the par-for-the-course dept

It's well known that folks at the FCC have a rather chummy relationship with the telco industry. After all, many of them either worked in the industry at one point or (more importantly) expect to get lucrative jobs in the industry after they leave the FCC. So it probably should come as no surprise to find out that the FCC tends to favor industry lobbyists and industry data to that of the consumers whose interests the FCC is supposed to be safeguarding. This is according to the GAO who has been doing a fantastic job highlight questionable government activity -- specifically with the FCC. In this latest report, there are two key things, both of which are quite troubling. First, the FCC often reveals important information to industry lobbyists, including information on new rulemaking efforts, votes and even how Commissioners intend to vote. This information is often not equally shared with consumer advocates, leaving them at a tremendous disadvantage. Second, in doing research for rulemaking, the FCC often relies on the data submitted to them, by industry representatives. And we all know how trustworthy that is likely to be. It's also probably worth pointing out that the GAO provided a draft of the report to the FCC and asked for comment, to which the FCC replied "no comment." Indeed. It appears no comment is really needed.

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  1. identicon
    Ajax 4Hire, 4 Oct 2007 @ 4:39am

    Unlike the SEC which REQUIRES public

    disclosure. SEC requires that publicly traded stock as well as the SEC itself to make information publicly available when released (known as the Insider Trading rules).

    Public Companies MUST distribute information in a news release or press release and cannot use secret or selective distribution of material information. SEC does also.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Pat, 4 Oct 2007 @ 5:59am

    FCC - FDA - let's face it, they're all bought and sold and have lost all credibility. Lobbyist own our government and that's what's bringing us down....oh, that and the whole insane Bush/Cheney reign. At any rate, I'll bet our founding fathers never imagined the government they so carefully set up would become the phoney mess it is now.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Joe C., 4 Oct 2007 @ 6:53am


    The top ATT and VZ lawyers should have an office on the 8th floor of the FCC, they walk around like they own it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    CharlieHorse, 4 Oct 2007 @ 7:25am

    Say it ain't so, Joe!

    "I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!" - Captain Renault to Rick (Casablanca, 1942)

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 4 Oct 2007 @ 7:51am

    The same thing happens in every agency that was formed to regulate an industry. The agency becomes a tool of that industry.

    Isn't it great what money can buy? Is that what's meant by "free enterprise"?

    America places the well being of corporations ahead of the American people themselves.

    If you had to describe America, which would it be?

    "We the people" or "Follow the money"?

    It's not what our Founding Fathers had in mind, was it?

    My questions is, "When are we going to do something about it?"

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    Perler, 4 Oct 2007 @ 11:22am


    Lobbyists beget cronies=public crapifacation

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    jbodden, 9 Sep 2008 @ 10:37am

    I wanna lobby too!

    I would like to lobby to change the name of the FCC to the Federal Universal Communication Commission Union.

    Then the acronym would look a bit more in touch with the consumer reality - FUCC U.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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