Pulver Seeks FCC Promise To Leave Internet Video Unregulated


Jeff Pulver, taking the bully pulpit at his latest VON conference in San Jose this week, is asking the FCC to declare that internet video is not subject to cable and broadcast television regulations. Pulver filed the petition on behalf of Network2, his online video aggregation company. He also wants the FCC to go on record that it does not intend to impose new regulations on internet video. Release.
Pulver’s reasoning: internet differs vastly from traditional media from technological, geographical and social standpoints, therefore, it should not be governed as if it were something else. Pulver: “From a technical standpoint, internet video is simply a piece of code, a software application riding over the Internet Protocol. Internet video is not tied to underlying network infrastructure in the same ways that cable and broadcast-based video content currently is tethered.”
Jeff Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, speaking to B&C, counters Pulver’s views: “Multi-platform access rules will be needed for political speech on mobile and IP platforms. Rules protecting news and public affairs and advertising safeguards will be needed, including protecting children.”
Pulver’s move comes on the heels of Skype’s net neutrality petition. The web telephone service also requested that the FCC to “confirm a consumer’s right to use internet communications software and attach devices to wireless networks,” according to VO News. The petition would ease the way for independent providers to offer IP services over cellular operators’ high-speed data networks.
At the same time, Virtual Digital Cable has a pending complaint with the FCC saying online video distributors should be covered by the program access law that requires satellite-delivered cable programming from companies affiliated with cable operators to be available to multichannel-video-programming distributors.
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