AT&T is filing its official comments in the FCC’s privacy proceeding suggesting that “the FCC should follow the FTC’s lead and adopt a notice and consent framework for privacy that is entirely consistent with the FTC framework that has governed since the inception of the Internet,” according to the company’s public policy blog.
The post quotes FCC Chairman Wheeler at a recent hearing as saying: “For decades, the Commission has steadfastly protected consumers against misuse of their information by [telephone companies] …. It only makes sense that consumers should enjoy similar privacy protections in the world of broadband.”
The problem with the FCC’s current approach is that it doesn’t reflect the reality of how the Internet actually works, AT&T’s SVP, Federal Regulatory Bob Quinn, charges.
“That ‘misperception’ is captured by a wrong-headed conclusion in the NPRM that ISPs are uniquely in a position to develop highly detailed and comprehensive profiles of their customers,” Quinn writes. “It is just not true.”
He points to a commissioned paper by Professor Peter Swire that he says was done to help educate the FCC on the different data collection capabilities of all the platforms operating in the Internet ecosystem. “[Not] surprisingly, that paper was neither cited nor referenced in the NPRM,” Quinn adds.
The post maintains that the FCC appears to have already made up its mind about the rules and “concerns will probably fall upon deaf ears.”
“It’s striking that the Swire paper was neither referenced nor cited in the NPRM. They seem to not want to hear what they don’t want to understand,” Quinn writes. “People outside the U.S., however, will be paying attention and I will predict today that the result will be more regulation for U.S. companies abroad and more expensive broadband for US consumers domestically.”
The entire post is available here.
Filed Under: Industry regulations