Friend of Knowledge Problem Geoff Manne had a thorough opinion piece in Wired yesterday on the FCC’s Title II Internet designation. Well worth reading. From the “be careful what you wish for” department:
Title II (which, recall, is the basis for the catch-all) applies to all “telecommunications services”—not just ISPs. Now, every time an internet service might be deemed to transmit a communication (think WhatsApp, Snapchat, Twitter…), it either has to take its chances or ask the FCC in advance to advise it on its likely regulatory treatment.
That’s right—this new regime, which credits itself with preserving “permissionless innovation,” just put a bullet in its head. It puts innovators on notice, and ensures that the FCC has the authority (if it holds up in court) to enforce its vague rule against whatever it finds objectionable.
And that’s even at the much-vaunted edge of the network that such regulation purports to protect.
Asking in advance. Nope, that’s not gonna slow innovation, not one bit …