Luncheon Featured Comcast CEO Roberts, Sen. Ted Stevens, Analyst Panel
WASHINGTON D.C. - As part of its CEO Luncheon series, The Progress & Freedom Foundation hosted an event with Comcast Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Brian L. Roberts in late September. The event featured opening remarks by Senator Ted Stevens, Chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, and a question and answer session with three distinguished media analysts. In light of continued debate on an update to the 1996 Telecom Act, PFF is releasing a transcript of the full event.
In his previously released prepared remarks, Roberts called on policymakers to focus on voice competition while considering an update of the 1996 Telecom Act, citing a new study that indicates projected consumer savings from more voice competition are several times what would flow from more video competition. In order to initiate new investment and competition in the voice sector, Roberts identified four areas of concentration for officials and regulators:
- The right to interconnect "at cost-based rates, and without delays or degradation," regardless of technology used;
- Fair transit costs and intercarrier compensation;
- Clearly defined social obligations, such as 911 service, which are competitively neutral;
- Discussion and coordination between federal and state regulators regarding "how, where and to what extent [cable companies] and the phone companies should be regulated in the future."
Following the address was a question and answer session with media analysts Aryeh B. Bourkoff of UBS Investment Research, Blair Levin of Stifel Nicolaus, and Craig E. Moffett of Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Topics discussed include cable ownership caps, network neutrality, spectrum auctions, and the cost of sports programming.
In addition to the transcript being made available, the entire program, including remarks from Senator Ted Stevens, can be viewed via webcast on the PFF website.
The Progress & Freedom Foundation is a market-oriented think tank that studies the digital revolution and its implications for public policy. It is a 501(c)(3) research & educational organization.