Technology & Telecom
WPC's Technology & Telecom Project focuses on wireless regulations, access to broadband internet, wireline regulatory environment, open source issues, telecom regulations, video franchise reform, technology and privacy issues, and more.
Carl Gipson, Director, Center for Small Business, February, 2007
One of the basic tenets of government since the early 20th century, both nationally and locally, has been to protect. Protect consumers, employees, employers, and many more stratifications. Sometimes protection was warranted; and other times government regulators made mountains out of molehills.
Steven Titch, Reason Public Policy Foundation & Carl Gipson, Director, Center for Small Business, January, 2007
Video franchises are the revenue sharing agreements that cable TV companies sign with local governments in return for the exclusive right to sell video services to customers. Because local and municipal governments own so much of the cable TV and telephone infrastructure, TV and telephone companies entered into franchise agreements with those local governments for the right to use those lines. The TV/Telephone company would give a portion of their profits to the government for the “exclusive” usage rights.
Steven Titch, Policy Analyst, Reason Foundation, January, 2007
Franchise reform, the movement to replace local regulatory regimes that govern legacy cable monopolies with statewide franchise agreements that encourage competition and improved service, has taken on new urgency. Encouraged by telephone companies eager to provide an array of new broadband video services to anxious customers, ten states—Texas, Indiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, New Jersey, California and Michigan—have enacted bipartisan statewide franchise reform since 2005.
Paul Guppy, Vice President for Research, April, 2006
Washington Policy Center consistently promotes a simple principle - competition is good for consumers. In our free economy competition is what drives excellence, innovation and, more importantly, low prices, meaning a better life for all the citizens of our state. Nothing is more motivating to business people than the daily knowledge that their customers will walk the minute they are not satisfied with either the price or the quality of the service being offered. That is why it is so important for government officials not only to refrain from blocking consumers' voluntary choices, but to actively promote competition when advances in technology make new options available.
Dana Joel Gattuso, Adjunct Scholar, March, 2005
Haste maketh waste in the fast-paced world of technology. Every year, Americans trash two million tons of old computers and other forms of electronic waste. While that’s a tiny fraction of the nation's total waste stream, the issue of what to do with all the "e-waste" is creating hype and hysteria among state and federal lawmakers.
Paul Guppy, Vice President for Research, May, 2004
We live in a world where leaps in technology happen on a regular basis. The latest jump is new technology that lets telephone users make calls over the internet. Called Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), the new service will allow a person to talk to anyone in the world for a fraction of the cost of a traditional long distance call.
Paul Guppy, Vice President for Research, May, 2002
Your local phone company may soon be trying to sell you long-distance service. Across the country the regional Bells are eagerly petitioning the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to be allowed into the lucrative long-distance telephone market. In return, they are supposed to give up monopoly control in their own markets and let their customers shop for local phone service.
Paul Guppy, Vice President for Research, June, 2001
Tacoma Public Utilities (TPU) was founded more than a century ago as Tacoma City Light and was granted monopoly status and the charter to “meet community needs for electricity.” More recently the utility has expanded its mission. In 1997 TPU embarked on an ambitious experiment to build a publicly-funded telecommunications system called the Click! Network. The system was intended to provide high-speed access for cable television, data transmission and Internet services for TPU customers.
Paul Guppy, Vice President for Research, June, 2001
In 1997 Tacoma Public Utilities (TPU) embarked on an ambitious experiment to build a publicly-funded telecommunications system called the Click! Network. The system was intended to provide high-speed access for cable television, data transmission and Internet services for TPU customers.
Paul Guppy, Vice President for Research, April, 2001
A federal appeals court is expected to decide this spring whether to overturn Judge Penfield Jackson’s ruling to break up Microsoft. Many believe the best way to predict the outcome is to examine the merits of the case, as the appeals court judges are doing. What is often overlooked, however, are the serious flaws in the way the case was presented in the first place. The weaknesses in the case itself are examined in another Washington Institute Policy Note.