Regulating Internet Service As a Utility: The Devil, As Always, Is in the Details (4 February 2015)
On the heels of President Obama's call last November for the FCC to take a stronger regulatory position with respect to "net neutrality,"
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is expected to share a proposal with the other Commissioners tomorrow that will set up a vote 3 weeks later on
new rules for Title II regulation of "Internet service." What this means, however, is not clear from the way in which terms like
"net neutrality" and "Internet service" are used by reports in the popular press, such as this recent article in the New York Times:
In Net Neutrality Push, F.C.C. Is Expected to Propose Regulating Internet Service as a Utility (NYT 2/2/15)
"It is expected that the proposal will reclassify high-speed Internet service as a telecommunications service, instead of an information
service, under Title II of the Communications Act..."
The details are even more important than usual in this context, as Interisle's comments to the FCC
("Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet")
describe — in detail. Our conclusion is that "[s]ervice providers should be required to make the telecommunications layer
of their networks available to any requesting party on a common carrier basis, subject to Title II regulation, especially Sections
201, 202, 208, and 254." Read the full paper for a clear explanation of the issues.
The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority in Transition (15 December 2014)
The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) has been responsible
for making and publishing the assignments of Internet names and numbers, including DNS domain names and Internet Protocol (IP)
addresses, for more than 40 years. The IANA functions are currently performed by the
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) under a set
of agreements that includes a
with the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) of the U.S. Department of Commerce.
On 14 March 2014, NTIA
that it intended to end its oversight of the IANA functions, and asked ICANN
to launch a multistakeholder effort to propose a non-governmental alternative. As part of that effort,
ICANN's Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) has prepared and published a set of three Advisories:
SAC067, "Overview and History of the IANA Functions";
SAC068, "Report on the IANA Functions Contract";
and SAC069, "Maintaining the Security and Stability
of the IANA Functions Through the Stewardship Transition." Interisle partner and SSAC member Lyman Chapin co-authored all three Advisories.