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Re: Gore Commission wants to regulate the Net like broadcast

I was always of the understanding that the mandate for regulation of radio
and television broadcasts had to do centrally with the "allocation of
scarce resources." That is, that because there are only a finite number of
non-overlapping spectrum slots, some degree of regulation or allocation is

(I'm not saying I support this, just that this was the argument for the FCC
and related regulatory measures.)

The Internet is not constrained by a finite number of slots...capacity can
be added arbitrarily (well, at least for as many decades out as we can
imagine). And consumers can, and do, pick what they choose to download or
connect to.

The Internet is about pure speech, about publishing.  For the Gore
Commission to even _hint_ at regulating it is reprehensible.

More comments below.

At 1:34 PM -0800 1/20/98, Declan McCullagh wrote:
>Date: Tue, 20 Jan 1998 16:20:23 -0500
>From: Alan Moseley <[email protected]>
>To: [email protected]
>Subject: the Gore Commission and digital media
>The Gore Commission -- the group created by Clinton to determine the
>future public interest obligations of digital TV broadcasters -- showed
>signs last week of broadening its reach to include other digital media
>that can deliver broadcast-like audio and video.

Just because the Internet can deliver audio and video signals is hardly a
matter of "allocating scarce resources." Video rental stores can also
deliver video signals, but there is no (well, modulo the "obscenity" laws
in various communities) regulation of these sources.

--Tim May

The Feds have shown their hand: they want a ban on domestic cryptography
Timothy C. May              | Crypto Anarchy: encryption, digital money,
ComSec 3DES:   408-728-0152 | anonymous networks, digital pseudonyms, zero
W.A.S.T.E.: Corralitos, CA  | knowledge, reputations, information markets,
Higher Power: 2^2,976,221   | black markets, collapse of governments.
"National borders aren't even speed bumps on the information superhighway."