By Sara Jerome and Gautham Nagesh - 09/28/10 11:03 AM EDT
Republicans who vote to regulate the Internet may get cover from telecom groups, but not from the Tea Party
Conservative telecom groups who frequently back phone and cable company views are indicating they may support House net-neutrality legislation, possibly providing some political cover for GOP
members to vote in favor of a policy the party has traditionally opposed.
But some observers said the political climate is anti-regulatory, so GOP members who support the unprecedented set of Internet regulations in the pending bill could face political consequences. Tea Party groups seem poised to oppose the new rules, observers said.
Conservative House members may hesitate to support the bill even if it wins the backing of phone and cable companies. Rep. Marsha Blackburn, a member of the House Energy and Commerce Communications Subcommittee, already appears to be skeptical.
“How fitting that in the last days of this Congress, Democrats would draw up a bill to regulate one of the few non-government sectors of our economy still creating jobs,” a spokesman for Blackburn, Claude Chafin, told The Hill on Monday.
Rep. John Culberson (R-Texas), another vocal opponent of net-neutrality rules, which he views as "regulating the Internet," also framed the pending bill from House Energy and Commerce Chairman Henry Waxman (Calif.) as a Democratic initiative. Read the full article in The Hill: http://bit.ly/bEHKQV.
Net neutrality bill could come Tuesday; public interest groups seem unlikely to support it
A bill under development by House Energy and Commerce Chairman Henry Waxman could be introduced as soon as Tuesday. Public advocates are unhappy with various aspects of what's anticipated in the legislation. According to a net-neutrality supporter, grievances include that the rules sunset and are not permanent; that rules do not apply as strictly to wireless providers as their wired counterparts; and that the bill takes FCC reclassification off the table. The source said public interest groups may argue that reclassification is necessary for the FCC to move on policies beyond net neutrality, including USF reform.
House may vote on Senate version of NASA reauthorization
House Science Committee chairman Bart Gordon (D-Tenn.) said the House could consider the Senate's version of NASA reauthorization on Wednesday after House lawmakers failed to put together an acceptable compromise bill in time for passage before recess. Gordon said he still believes the compromise amendment he offered last week is superior to the Senate bill, but he realizes that passing the flawed Senate bill is preferable to leaving NASA in limbo for the start of a new fiscal year. http://bit.ly/9DEUS5
Officials to discuss next generation Web. Senior Obama administration officials and members of industry will meet at the Press Club Tuesday morning for a workshop to discuss progress on implementing IPv6, also known as the next generation of the Internet. With the number of available web addresses set to run out as soon as the end of the year, officials are attempting to speed up the transition to IPv6. While most consumers won't notice any chance on their end, developers and network administrators must make sure their equipment is upgraded and able to carry all types of web traffic. http://bit.ly/cOXau0
FCC review of the Comcast-NBC Universal merger will not be completed this year, officials say. The Wall Street Journal reports that "despite twice-weekly staff meetings on Comcast's proposal to acquire control of NBC Universal from General Electric, the FCC may not finish that review until February," according to agency officials. The piece profiles FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski's first year on the job. Accomplishments to this point include his support for data transparency using online tools, a morale boost, and a new website. But the report cites delays on net-neutrality, media ownership, and early termination fees. http://bit.ly/bqgTKk
White House to recruit and train 10,000 STEM teachers. President Obama said Monday on the Today show that his administration has set a goal of recruiting and training 10,000 new teachers in science, math, technology and engineering. The ambitious target is part of the White House's push to increase the quality of education in those fields, which President Obama argued are critical to the U.S.'s future economic competitiveness. Obama noted that even good schools are showing drops in STEM performance compared to other developed nations, a trend he termed "a sign of long-term decline that has to be reversed." http://bit.ly/b8TCde
RIM unveils tablet computer. The makers of the BlackBerry smartphone unveiled their own version of a tablet computer Monday evening with the goal of taking on Apple's iPad and Amazon's Kindle. Research in Motion did not specify the device's price, but said the BlackBerry Playbook would be aimed at business users and full compatible with the secure servers BlackBerry users currently use for messaging and e-mail. http://nyti.ms/bWuLtQ
The pending net neutrality bill seems "more reasonable than I expected."
-Brett Glass, an ardent critic of net-neutrality regulations and the founder of a wireless company, tweeted the message on Monday to Americans for Prosperity executive Phil Kerpen.
SUPERMAN—Mashable reports that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg will become the star of a comic book this December. Bluewater Productions, a Canadian company, "plans to release 'Mark Zuckerberg: Creator of Facebook' as a 48-page saga that seeks to answer the question: 'Who is the real Mark Zuckerberg?'" As Mashable puts it, "Is he the philanthropist who recently donated $100 million to public schools in Newark? Or is he the darker character we’re all anxiously awaiting meeting in David Fincher’s The Social Network?" The company previously released a book on William Shatner. http://bit.ly/97MS5t