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February 2005

  • "Groups Send Letters to States in Support of Municipal Broadband," Communications Daily, February 24, 2005.
    "'I am more skeptical about this,' said PFF Vp- Research Tom Lenard: 'If private companies don't do something that doesn't mean that the market fails. If the economics of Wi-Fi was favorable as it's described, private sector would be clamoring to get involved.' Lenard said there was 'inconsistency between describing this project as so favorable and the private sector not wanting to get in. That means that this project is maybe more risky that it's described.' He said with the technology changing 'very rapidly... even in the best circumstances investment in this whole area is very risky. That's one of the reasons why we think that it is better for governments not to be involved, because they are not very well suited to assess those risks and it's the tax payers that will have to pay the costs.'"
  • "The Digital Age Communications Act Begins," The Online Reporter, February 23, 2005.
    "The Progress & Freedom Foundation (PFF) has assembled working groups of people that served in one or more of the last five presidential administrations to draft language to use in a future communications bill that some are urging Congress to enact. The group says the move is meant "to ensure deregulated competition in services and platforms now, while crafting language that can anticipate future technologies and services." Called The Digital Age Communications Act (DACA), the initiative was launched at a press conference this week. Several Congressmen are considering an overhaul of existing communications laws.
  • "The USF: More Controversy, More Kudos," Telecom Policy Report, February 9, 2005.
    "As seen repeatedly this year, the USF is emerging as a flashpoint of criticism and a top priority for many reform proposals, including the concept and model of a new Digital Age Communications Act suggested by the Progress & Freedom Foundation."
  • "Telecom Industry Wants Indiana Panel's Power Over Telecom Limited," Tech Daily, February 3, 2005.
    "Kent Lassman, a research fellow and the director of the Digital Policy Network at the Progress and Freedom Foundation, said H.B. 1693 'is more advantageous because it offers greater flexibility to the legislature to address later changes in the marketplace, [while H.B. 1518] fixes the law in outdated terms [and] definitions and therefore ensures future legislative intervention.'"
  • "Comm Daily Notebook," Communications Daily, February 2, 2005.
    "The Progress & Freedom Foundation (PFF) announced a bipartisan project to write model Telecom Act reform legislation using the expertise of many policy officials and academics. Its goal will be to offer well-researched conclusions that avoid special interest positions, said PFF Fellow Randolph May. The concept is that 'ideas do matter,' and while this might seem naive inside the Beltway, historically 'ideas have influenced legislation,' said George Washington U. Prof. John Duffy at a PFF news conference Tues."
  • "Comprehensive Telecom Act Rewrite Proposed by PFF," TR Daily, February 2, 2005.
    "The Progress and Freedom Foundation think-tank, as revealed in this space last week (TRDaily, Jan 28), today launched a process to create draft legislation that would rewrite comprehensively the Communications Act of 1934, as modified by the '96 Telecom Act."
    "The effort, unveiled at the National Press Club, will spring from five working groups, each addressing different issues: regulatory framework, spectrum policy, institutional reform, universal service/social policy, and the federal/state regulatory framework."
    "The foundation hopes to release working-group reports containing draft bill language beginning in April, then, after open workshops that include industry representatives and other interested parties, final bill language this fall."
  • "Foundation to Develop Model Bill to Update Telecommunications Law," BNA Daily Report for Executives, February 2, 2005.
    "The project, called the Digital Age Communications Act (DACA), will focus on five areas of telecommunications policy: regulatory framework; spectrum policy; institutional reform; universal service and social policies; and the federal-state framework."
    "Ray Gifford, president of the Progress and Freedom Foundation, and Randolph May, director of communications policy studies at the foundation, said the initial focus will be on the five areas of study, although the ultimate goal is to combine all the elements into one model bill. The bill could then be used by the Congress as it undertakes a rewrite of the 1996 Telecommunications Act, they said."
  • "Former FTC Chairman Says Telecom Reform Should Focus on Spectrum Property Rights," RCR Wireless News, February 2, 2005.
    "'One might ask whether a bottom-up rewrite of communications law is advisable, or even prudent,' said Randolph May, PFF senior fellow and director of communications policy studies. 'We believe that the transformation of the communications sector, from analog to digital from circuits to packets, from monopolistic platforms to multiple platforms, warrants consideration as a whole.'"
  • "Reforming USF And Compensation," Wireless Week, February 1, 2005.
    "'Universal service is like Social Security,' says Randolph May, senior fellow at the Progress and Freedom Foundation (PFF). Both the universal service fund (USF) and intercarrier compensation programs face a 'looming crisis' if they're not fixed, he says.
  • "SBC-AT&T Not Bringing Ma Bell Back," Chicago Tribune, February 1, 2005
    "Although an SBC-AT&T combo may look like the old Ma Bell, there's no way that such a powerful communications monopoly could ever be reassembled, said May, director of Communications Policy Studies for the Progress and Freedom Foundation."
    "'Technology has changed everything,' May said. 'You have cable companies competing with phone companies and wireless services competing with wired service. The old Bell System could never be put back together in any meaningful sense.'"
  • "PFF Announces Digital Age Communications Act Project," Tech Law Journal, February 1, 2005.
    "The Progress and Freedom Foundation (PFF) hosted an event in Washington DC to announce the formation of a project titled the 'Digital Age Communications Act', or DACA. Its purpose is to review, issue reports on, and make legislative recommendations regarding, the legislative and regulatory framework affecting the communications and information technology sectors. It plans to issue a series of reports, starting in April, and then release a draft bill in the fall of 2005."
  • "Ma, Baby Bell Back Together Again," Arkansas News, February 1, 2005.
    "But Kyle Dixon, a senior fellow at Washington, D.C.-based The Progress & Freedom Foundation, said the merger will encourage companies to provide better bundles of services more cheaply."
    "'And a huge goal of the 1996 Act ... was to promote competition by removing restrictions on phone companies that existed when the government broke up Ma Bell,' said Dixon, a former federal regulator."
  • "SBC-AT&T Deal to Affect Mich. Jobs, Rates," Detroit Free Press, February 1, 2005.
    "'An SBC-AT&T merger proposal should come as no surprise,' according to Kyle Dixon, a senior fellow with the Progress & Freedom Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank. 'These combinations can bring consumers benefits, encouraging companies to provide better bundles of services more cheaply.'"
  • "SBC Plans to Buy AT&T for $16 Billion," Newsday, February 1, 2005.
    "The merger could benefit consumers by enabling SBC to roll out high-speed Internet service and long-distance in more states, according to both companies and the Communication Workers of America, which represents employees at AT&T and SBC."
    "Patrick Ross, spokesman for The Progress & Freedom Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank promoting free-market competition, agreed. 'They can offer more services to consumers at lower price points,' he said."


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