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FCC Urged To Act On Net Neutrality

The broadband debate will shift from private deals among carriers and
content providers to regulatory solutions including reclassifying the
Internet as a Title II telecommunications service, according to Senator
John Kerry. Pointing to the "Congressional stalemate" over broadband
regulation Senator  Kerry said the FCC is likely to move ahead on a
regulatory solution for oversight of broadband after public outcry over
the FCC's private meetings with companies caused the FCC to drop the

The Massachusetts Democrat, who is chairman of the Senate communications subcommittee, said he hopes a bipartisan compromise can be achieved on broadband, but his comments indicate he believes there is little likelihood of an agreement on broadband being reached during the current session of Congress.

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski "is now moving forward along a regulatory path," said Senator Kerry in a statement. "While this is an imperfect solution, it's his only real option to maintain the proper role of government oversight in communications. While we search for a long term solution I believe that all regulatory options should remain on the table."

Kerry's comments followed a firestorm of criticism centered around reports that Verizon and Google had reached a deal on net neutrality. The two firms have been trying for months to reach some sort of agreement on net neutrality and the latest brouhaha lacked details, although it was said to be focused more on landline access than wireless access.

The FCC has been hampered by a pro-carrier federal court decision that restricts FCC regulatory powers. While most Democrats in Congress support the FCC in broadband, enough Democrats are siding with opposing Republicans that the FCC broadband plan is in jeopardy of failing, at least for the time being.

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