Despite dropping temperatures, the network neutrality debate continues to heat up as the FCC prepares to re-craft new rules by order of the court.
The Free State Foundation, no fan of a possible Title II common carrier regulation approach to that effort, is holding a policy seminar Nov. 14--"Thinking the Unthinkable: Imposing the 'Utility Model' on Internet Providers"--featuring FCC Chief of Staff Ruth Milkman as the keynote speaker.
The FCC is at least thinking about that unthinkable. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has signaled repeatedly that Title II is on the table. Those include hybrid approaches that would 1) use Title II as an insurance policy of sorts if the court were to throw out rules based on the FCC's Sec. 706 mandate to deploy broadband and 2) reclassify the ISP/edge provider access relationship under Title II and leave the last-mile consumer service under 706.
Following Milkman's remarks, there will be a panel discussion, moderated by FSF President Randolph May and featuring Robert Crandall, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution (he is a member of FSF's Board of Academic Advisors); Gerald Faulhaber, former FCC chief economist and professor emeritus at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania; VoIP pioneer Jeff Pulver; former FCC Commissioner and FSF distinguished adjunct senior fellow Deborah Taylor Tate; Michael Weinberg, VP, Public Knowledge.