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Challenges Won’t Stop FCC’s Net Neutrality Pursuits

November 18, 2010 - News

Net neutrality supporters, don’t give up yet. That’s the word from FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski who has laid low since Verizon and Google this summer forged their own pact and once the Republicans swept control of the House earlier this month.

But Genachowski took the stage at this week’s Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, emphasizing that the Net neutrality push isn’t dead. It will happen, he said, according to multiple media outlets.

"We will make sure that we get the rules right, we need to make sure that what we do maximizes innovation and investment across the ecosystem," he said.

At the same time, Genachowski expressed his frustration with Google and Verizon. Verizon agreed with Google this past summer not to selectively slow Internet content on its DSL and fiber networks; the deal does not apply to the Verizon’s wireless services. The document undermined Genachowski’s efforts to create an industry-wide understanding.

"I would have preferred if they didn't do exactly what they did when they did it," Genachowski said. "It had the effect of slowing down some processes."

Whatever steps Genachowski takes next, Congress will be watching. And for the first time since he took his seat as chairman of the FCC, a Democratic majority will not be in place. But Genachowski, despite a warning from some powerful House members, isn’t worried.

"Things shouldn't change because the kinds of issues we work on aren't partisan," Genachowski said.

Of course, the Net neutrality issue has become partisan, which is likely to put a crimp in Genachowski’s progress.

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