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PFF in the News...
March 2008
  • "Who's To Say Comcast Won't Meddle With Net Again?," Mercury News, March 31, 2008
    "Adam Thierer of the Progress and Freedom Foundation thinks that market forces, not government, is all that's needed to keep companies like Comcast from blocking content.
    "'Any ISP that was so foolish to engage in excessive meddling or blocking of online content activity would face a PR crisis and massive consumer backlash,' he said. 'The Internet community has the ability to closely monitor service providers and call them out when they make boneheaded moves. The power of collective pressure can keep providers in check.'"
  • "BitTorrent Will Help to Manage Web Traffic," The Washington Times, March 28, 2008
    "Bret Swanson, a senior fellow at the Progress and Freedom Foundation, called the collaboration between Comcast and BitTorrent 'a huge win for common sense and for a healthy, growing Internet,' adding that regulation would have deterred competition by discouraging investment."
  • "Free Speech Advocate Talks AO Games, Thinks Sony Will Be First Console-Maker To Allow Them,", March 28, 2008
    "Adam Thierer, First Amendment champion and director at Washington D.C. think-tank The Progress & Freedom Foundation, believes the industry should show caution when introducing games rated AO by the Entertainment Software Ratings Board (ESRB) into the mainstream."
    "'I am in no way advocating that the industry hold off in terms of allowing complete creative expression,' Thierer told Multiplayer in an e-mail exchange."
    "'The video game industry has been very lucky so far and won all its major court cases against video game critics. But will there be a straw that breaks the camel’s back and opens the floodgates to regulation? I hope not, but a sudden flood of AO games on major consoles could change all that.'"
    "Comcast, BitTorrent's Traffic Management Deal Leaves Policy-Makers Poised to Continue Debate," TR Daily, March 27, 2008
    "Progress & Freedom Foundation President Ken Ferree said, 'Involving government regulators in these kinds of disputes was a mistake from the outset and promised nothing but mischief. There no longer is any reason for the FCC or any other agency of government to act on this matter.'"
  • "FCC Looks for Balance in Net Neutrality Debate," Phone + Magazine, March 14, 2008
    "Toning down the rhetoric, Ken Ferree, president of the Progress & Freedom Foundation said that one point beyond debate is that network resources are limited. 'We can’t all use the Internet all the time for all applications. So the question is not whether there will be some kind of traffic management, but what that traffic management might be,' Ferree said. 'One option is apparently that [the Internet] is a free for all and whoever is first on can use the Internet as much as they want for as long as they want and the rest of the world be damned.'
    "The other might be metered use where those who demand large amounts of network resources pay for them. 'That is an area I would have no objection to. It might work, but at this point there has been very little consumer testing and it is not clear if the market will accept that form of traffic management. But that may be where this all ends up,' Ferree said."
  • "NFL May Take Gripes to FCC," TMC Net, March 12, 2008
    "Progress & Freedom Foundation president Ken Ferree, chief of the FCC's Media Bureau from 2001 to 2005, testified that a rich and powerful entity like the NFL didn't need regulatory welfare from the FCC.
    "'I'd say nothing is broken here,' Ferree said.
    "Congress, he added, has many tough issues to tackle but 'the NFL's failure to negotiate carriage deals for the NFL Network is not one of them.'"
  • "EarthLink Pulls Out Of Municipal Wireless Market," Congress Daily, March 10
    "Adam Thierer, a senior fellow at the Progress & Freedom Foundation, observed in writing last fall that 'one lesson from this experiment is that demand counts' and that 'network-building is a tough, time-consuming and expensive task.'"
  • "This TV will self-destruct in 10...9...8....," Times-Picayune ( New Orleans), March 9, 2008
    "Ferree, for one, isn't sure that sprawling governmental efforts on behalf of broadcast consumers are such a grand idea.
    "'My reaction is, "What do I know?"' Ferree said, speaking as a former inside-the-Beltway bureaucrat. 'Find some Madison Avenue marketing guy to figure it out, not some inside-the-Beltway bureaucrat. Spending federal dollars to run a consumer [digital television transition] education campaign . . . that's not well-spent money.
    "'The (businesses) involved in this have everything to lose and more to gain from making it happen. They know their customers. They know how to make messages that reach them. At least they know that better than we do here in Washington.
    "'The consumer education angle of this is incredibly important.'"
  • "Hearing Tackles NFL-Cable Feud," USA Today, March 6, 2008
    "The NFL and cable operators who aren't carrying the league-owned NFL Network took their longstanding feud to Capitol Hill on Wednesday.
    "In a hearing before the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet, the sides repeated their now-familiar arguments.
    "W. Kenneth Ferree of the Progress & Freedom Foundation testified he didn't see 'a market failure requiring government intervention. ... The NFL Network simply insisted on rates and terms the market would not accommodate.'"
  • "NFL, Time Warner Cable Scrimmage on Capitol Hill," Broadcasting & Cable, March 5, 2008
    "[PFF President Ken Ferree] said a la carte was good in theory but a disaster in practice and it would lead to higher prices and less choice. Ferree added that the marketplace was working and that government didn't need to intervene.
    "He conceded that he was partly to blame for the current state of sports-programming regulatory affairs, calling it a 'Frankenstein's monster we created.' While at the FCC, he helped to come up with programming-access conditions for News Corp.'s purchase of DirecTV -- conditions essentially preserved in the FCC's recent approval of the sale of DirecTV to Liberty Media."
    "He added that the current situation is not analogous and that these were free-market negotiations that the government shouldn't get involved in, calling the NFL's suggestion that it needed the help 'a farce if it weren't so pathetic.'"

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