FCC To Review Big Broadband Access Providers’ Innovation-Stifling Practices

BY Heather Greenfield
October 16, 2015

Washington – The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has announced that it will review the business practices of several major broadband companies, who control the most crucial points of the Internet access pipeline.  These high-capacity, “special access” lines provide dedicated, guaranteed transmission of high volumes of critical data for cell phone networks, workplaces, banks, libraries, and hospitals.  The Computer & Communications Industry Association, along with its partners in the Competify campaign, has urged the FCC to look into the business practices of these dominant broadband gatekeepers, particularly their “lock-up” agreements that artificially maintain high barriers to entry and prevent competitors from investing and providing more options for consumers in this country.

The following can be attributed to CCIA President & CEO Ed Black:

“Almost every American relies upon these high-capacity, ‘special access,’ broadband lines each day – usually without even knowing it. But, the only thing ‘special’ about them is that the two biggest providers ‘lock-up’ their customers into long-term, exorbitant contracts, preventing them from seeking alternative choices and using innovative new products.  CCIA applauds the FCC and especially Tom Wheeler, its chairman, for looking into lock-up agreements, which stifle innovation and ultimately hurt consumers.”

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