By Sara Jerome - 11/05/10 06:06 PM EDT
Consumer groups such as Free Press and Public Knowledge want strong net-neutrality regulations on every Internet platform. Companies such as Facebook want to make sure wireless providers cannot block or slow down their services for wireless consumers.
Meanwhile, cable companies do not want be subject to net-neutrality rules that wireless network owners such as Verizon and AT&T do not have to contend with.
As a result, OIC found useful certain arguments in NCTA filings. OIC highlighted these comments in its latest filing with the FCC.
"Prominent network operators agree with a technologically neutral approach to open Internet policies," the OIC comments said. "In particular, NCTA agrees that any open Internet rules 'must be applied in a competitive, neutral manner to all broadband platforms, wirelines and wireless," the comments said.
The wireless industry saw things much differently.
CTIA, the wireless trade group, said there is an overwhelming recognition that wireless services should be regulated more lightly than wired ones.
The CTIA comments cite the "unique technical characteristics of wireless networks," which make the prospect of applying net-neutrality rules to wireless services "particularly troubling."
The comments respond to an FCC request for input on two subjects: how potential net-neutrality rules might apply to wireless networks and how the agency should approach "managed services." The latter offering is a speedy broadband service that companies may offer as separate from the Internet that users access today.
It is unclear how the FCC will proceed with its net-neutrality efforts. The rules are strongly opposed by industry, and many stakeholders say the FCC lacks the authority to move ahead.