IIA Activity in Response to Save the Internet Act and Net Neutrality Proposals 

On April 10, IIA released a statement on the House of Representatives vote to restore Obama-era Title II rules for broadband. The statement in response to the “Save the Internet” Act is below, and can also be found on the IIA site:

“Rather than pushing a partisan solution whose efficacy is debated, members of Congress should advance bipartisan net neutrality legislation. Three Republican bills now introduced by House Energy and Commerce Committee leaders offer promising starts, containing the very open internet provisions that Congressional Democrats sought in 2010 and President Obama’s FCC implemented that same year: no blocking, no throttling, no paid prioritization.

“Such a bipartisan accomplishment could both save the internet and perhaps help save (or at least improve) Americans’ faith in government.”

IIA Honorary Chair Rick Boucher and IIA Co-Chair Bruce Mehlman also released statements on April 3, urging bipartisan compromise on the net neutrality issue.  You can view their quotes here.

Boucher authored an op-ed, “Don’t Let Title II be the Enemy of the Good,” published by CIO on April 16.  In his piece, Boucher notes that the debate over net neutrality has raged for most of this century, but believes that today there’s a good opportunity to settle it and to stop the regulatory ping-pong via a bipartisan legislative solution.

Mehlman also had a net neutrality op-ed, “There’s a Better Way to Save the Internet Than the ’Save the Internet‘ Act,” published by Daily Caller on March 25. Mehlman expounds on the idea of a bipartisan solution as a real way forward to solve this issue instead of continuing to debate it at a time when the country should be focusing on advancing 5G technology.

IIA Leadership Weighs in on 5G

IIA Co-Chair Kim Keenan authored an op-ed, “America’s Wireless Strategy: If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix It,” published by The Hill in print and online on May 8.  Keenan explains that she believes that nationalizing 5G is NOT the way to beat China to the 5G finish line. Capitalism has advantages, and our track record proves that our 5G strategy is not broken, she says.

Rick Boucher’s op-ed, “The Private Sector Must Lead the Way to 5G,” was published by National Review on April 9.  In his piece, Boucher states that the private sector, not the government, must take the lead in the deployment of 5G technology, and the primary government role should be to continue selling 5G spectrum to the private sector at auction.

IIA Leadership on Online Privacy

On March 27, Kim Keenan had an op-ed published by Morning Consult, “Congress, Can We Have Some Privacy Please?”  In her piece, Keenan says that the time is right and ripe for Congress to enact a Privacy Bill of Rights.

Rick Boucher also weighed in on the privacy debate with an op-ed at Bloomberg Law on March 18, “Congress Should Say No More Secrets with Privacy Practices.” Boucher believes that the misuse of information collected from internet users continues to be a critical problem, and that the time has come for Congress to create a national data privacy standard applicable to everyone in the internet ecosystem.

Further Reading

Rick Boucher authored an op-ed about the challenges of determining which rural areas in the country have broadband service.  His piece, “Dragons Lurk in the Details of Mapping the Digital Divide,” was published by Multichannel News on April 8.

Boucher also had a column published by CIO on March 27, “Lessons from Broadcast Spectrum Auction can Help Close the Homework Gap.” Boucher notes that opportunities would arise from putting frequencies in the 2.5 GHz Educational Broadband Service spectrum band into an incentive auction. Not only could the government’s share of the proceeds be put toward closing the Homework Gap, but underutilized mid-band spectrum could fuel the deployment of 5G.