FCC Head Mum on Internet Reclassification

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski wouldn’t reveal this week whether he’ll try to re-classify Internet access as a telecommunications service so the agency can keep a strict eye on service providers’ network-management actions.

But Genachowski did tell the Senate Commerce Committee that the recent court ruling stating the FCC overstepped its bounds in trying to punish Comcast Corp. for discriminating against P2P traffic won’t keep the agency from carrying out its national broadband plan.

The FCC’s lawyers still are looking into the effects of the court decision, Genachowski told lawmakers on Wednesday. While he’s waiting for their input, though, Genachowski said he doesn’t think the findings will keep the FCC from protecting consumers from operators that might try to regulate subscribers’ legal network use. That’s without pursuing an appeal to last week’s ruling – Genachowski said commissioners think they can enforce Net neutrality requirements without violating the court’s verdict.

Meanwhile, the FCC may try to get Internet regulated as a telecom service rather than the more lenient information service. That attempt will face a lot of opposition so it’s not clear whether anything will transpire.

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