Nov 18th, 2020 marked 3900 days since the Federal Communications Commission launched its heavily-hyped "National Broadband Plan." 400 days ago, I penned an op-ed for the Benton Institute which assessed how the FCC had been unable to achieve any of the benchmarks or meet any of the six stated goals of the plan. You probably won’t be surprised to hear that another year didn’t fix very much of the shortcomings I identified then.
Here We Go (Again): FCC Media Ownership Policy, Prometheus Radio Project and (now) the Supreme Court
On April 17, the FCC and the National Association of Broadcasters each filed a petition asking the Supreme Court to review the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit’s 2019 decision in Prometheus Radio Project v. FCC. The decision was the fourth in a line of intertwined cases dealing with the agency’s media ownership policies since 2004. In Prometheus IV, the Third Circuit remanded the diametrically opposed FCC’s media ownership decisions in 2016 and 2017, as well as the agency’s 2018 incubator program.
In early 2009, Congress directed the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to develop a National Broadband Plan with a functional objective to ensure every American has “access to broadband capability.” Now, with just 165 days left before the National Broadband Plan was to meet the plan’s original stated objectives, I explore some of the key components and objectives of the plan. Ten years is a great deal of time in the telecommunications realm, and it is true that the plan asked a great deal of the FCC from the very start.