The FCC Takes On Wireless Carriers

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Earlier this week, President Obama’s chairman of the Federal Communications Commission may have picked his first big fight. And it wasn’t over a Janet Jackson-eque nipple-slip or a fleeting expletive: It was over your cell phone. We talk with Tim Wu, professor of law at Columbia University and co-author of the book "Who Controls the Internet?: Illusions of a Borderless World." We also speak to freelance tech journalist Eric Krangel.

Now that the FCC may change how cell phone providers offer service, we're looking for your cell phone horror stories. When have you been frustrated with your phone plan? Leave a comment or call 1-877-8-MY-TAKE.

Guests:

Eric Krangel and Tim Wu

Contributors:

Matt Lieber

Comments [2]

Sam Gronner

"Net neutrality" does not mean unfettered access to the licensed airwaves of the mobile operators. Customers need to understand that physics and economics come into play when carriers offer devices and mobile data services. Rather than impose FCC rules, we should let market forces drive innovations that allow the operators to get a return on investments they have made by offering applications-based pricing models, rather than flat-rate consumption limits on how many gigabytes are consumed. Relegating them to mere bitpipes for independent apps is not an economically sustainable model.

Sep. 24 2009 11:08 AM
Keith Erskine

Wow, what a truly unbalanced discussion this morning. Here are some facts that were omitted:

1) A BIG reason for preventing phone portability is that two network protocols are used (CDMA-Verizon, Sprint; GSM-AT&T, T-Mobile). You're iPhone just won't work on Verizon

2) A big reason for so few carriers is that it takes BILLIONS of dollars to put up a nationwide network and BILLIONS more to manage it. The money is from investors that want to see a return some day - unlike our Gov't using TARP for GM

3) The US has more choices and lower prices than anywhere in the world (source CTIA)

I expect more from public radio, and when you book two neo-luddites that essentially agree with each other, it doesn't provide listeners with a clear perspective of the issues.

I run a startup and live near Boston. If you need a guest with another viewpoint - email me - Thanks....Keith

Sep. 24 2009 07:44 AM

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