More than a dozen high-tech companies sent a written plea
to the Federal Communications Commission last week, urging it not to adopt broadband
America Online and some regional Bell operating companies
have asked the FCC to force cable operators to open their networks to Internet service
No way, said Intel Corp., Cisco Systems Inc., Novell Inc.,
Compaq Computer Corp., Com21 Inc., IBM Corp., New Enterprise Associates, Integral Capital
Partners, SegaSoft Networks Inc., IBM Corp., Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Accel
Partners, Arepa Inc. and Brilliant Digital Entertainment. All of those companies signed
their names to the two-page document.
The companies lobbied that any form of broadband regulation
would impede the "speed and ubiquity" of broadband deployments.
"While we are involved in many different types of
businesses, we all share a strong interest in making sure high-speed broadband networks
are built out as quickly and widely as possible," the signatories wrote.
The companies suggested two reasons why the FCC should back
away from broadband regulation: The broadband market segment needs to move more quickly,
necessitating a continuation of the current "hands off" approach; and secondly,
the FCC should avoid taking any action that would "dampen the willingness of
financial markets to finance the construction of broadband facilities."
Any new and unnecessary regulations would diminish the
willingness of capital markets to finance broadband projects, they said.
"We share the Commission's view that the public
interest will be best served by the deployment of multiple broadband networks...but that
goal will only be realized if the Commission maintains a hands-off approach that trusts
markets to determine how the emerging broadband networks will be built and utilized,"
the companies said in closing.