Regulation & Compliance

The latest in regulatory news and compliance issues that impact partner businesses and their customers.

OUT OF THE LOOP

  THE BELLS ARE ON COURSE to do away with more copper loops than ever, an apparent rush to beat the clock in case the FCC institutes a stringent review process. CLECs view the retirements as attempts to foil competition; they use the loops to deliver DSL, Ethernet and other services to customers. They also […]

Separate & Unequal

Interconnected VoIP providers, in limbo over E911 compliance, are counting on a proposed Senate bill to reduce the chances theyll be indiscriminately sued, a fear that is limiting growth. Right now, many companies restrict expansions and even turn customers away because they do not have protections from liability, while wireline and wireless providers do. Sen. […]

ROUND TABLE

… On the Universal Service Fund at a Senate Commerce Committee hearing in March and changes the federal government should consider The USF must be configured like a pyramid: it must have a broad and stable base of contributions at the bottom, and a narrow but sufficient distribution of support at the top. Issues related […]

Qwest Now a One-Stop Shop

Qwest Communications International Inc. has become the first Bell under the 1996 Telecom Act allowed to combine local and long-distance operations in its territory. Qwest says the relief granted by the FCC means it will save money and improve customer service. Critics fear the company will use its new status to raise prices. The FCC […]

ROUND TABLE

… On the federal criminalization of pretexting, or the act of fraudulently obtaining consumers private phone records Sales of fraudulently obtained phone records flourished because the possibility of criminal prosecution was remote. The bills unanimous support in both houses sends a strong message to data thieves this activity will not be tolerated.Rep. Lamar Smith, the […]

FCC Opened Forbearance Floodgate

IT WAS NEARLY ONE YEAR ago when a two-two tie at the Federal Communications Commission on whether to grant or deny a forbearance petition by Verizon Communications Inc. resulted in the Bell company receiving sweeping relief from federal and state regulation of its high-capacity broadband voice and data services. The commissions action was irresponsible, and […]

Twombly Case Not Just Telecom Antitrust Suit

The case many experts call the most important antitrust suit in 20 years would, if decided in favor of the plaintiff, impact industries across the board, far beyond telecom. That is the contention of industry watchers keeping an eye on the Bell Atlantic (Verizon Communications Inc., Qwest Communications International Inc., SBC Communications Inc. and BellSouth […]

Soap Box

AS CHIEF COUNSEL AND LEGISLATIVE director for Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, in the mid-90s, I and my colleagues on the Hill worked tirelessly negotiating and drafting key provisions of the 1996 Telecommunications Act that would spur competition and innovation. Congress laid the groundwork for the FCC to implement pro-competitive and pro-consumer policies. Pioneering upstarts were […]

Megamerger Review Drags On

WHETHER A FEDERAL JUDGES review of the four recent RBOC megamergers will change how future deals are approved remains a matter of speculation. What regulatory experts do agree on is the judge has no plans to let the government walk on him as he examines whether the Department of Justice (DoJ) did due diligence in […]

Burden of Proof

THE TRUTH IS THERE IS NO government mandate for VoIP providers to use third-party verification for confirming orders or even E911 notifications. Yet, an increasing number of VoIP providers are using these services and, with recent FCC action foreshadowing increased regulation of VoIP players, experts say the numbers are likely to grow. It is our […]

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