Telecommunications Regulatory Framework in the United by xnv73456

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									Telecommunications Regulatory
Framework in the United States
           Matthew A. Brill
        Latham & Watkins LLP

    2009 U.S./China Legal Exchange
Regulatory Framework and Jurisdiction
• Communications Act of 1934
    – Separate titles addressing common carrier services, broadcast
      and wireless telecommunications services, and cable services

• Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
    – Established to regulate interstate and foreign commerce in wire
      and radio communications
    – Includes 7 Bureaus (and 10 supporting Offices):
       •   Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau
       •   Enforcement Bureau
       •   International Bureau
       •   Media Bureau
       •   Public Safety & Homeland Security Bureau
       •   Wireless Telecommunications Bureau
       •   Wireline Competition Bureau


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Regulatory Framework and Jurisdiction
• National Telecommunications and Information
  Administration (NTIA)
    – Founded in 1978 to advise President on communications policy
    – Other functions:
        • Manage use of spectrum by Federal government
        • Conduct telecommunications research
        • Administer infrastructure development grants, such as the broadband
          stimulus plan
    – Includes 5 Offices:
        •   Office of Spectrum Management
        •   Office of Policy Analysis & Development
        •   Office of International Affairs
        •   Institute for Telecommunications Services
        •   Office of Telecommunications and Information Applications


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     Key Policy Objectives and Regulatory Functions

• Competition
    – Wireline, wireless, video, broadband
• Consumer Protection
    – Complaint processes, enforcement, and rulemakings
• Broadband Deployment and Adoption
    – Unserved and underserved areas, demand stimulation
    – February 2010 National Broadband Plan
• Spectrum Policy
    – Licensed and unlicensed, public safety
• Media Policy
    – Ownership restrictions, localism, indecency
• Public Safety
    – Emergency services, network reliability and security
• International Coordination


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      Key Policy Objectives and Regulatory Functions

• Foreign Ownership Restrictions
    FCC radio licenses may not be owned by:
    – Any alien or representative of any alien;
    – Any corporation organized under the laws of a foreign
      government;
    – Any corporation of which more than 20 percent of
      stock is owned or voted by aliens or their
      representatives, or a foreign government; or
    – Any corporation controlled by another corporation of
      which more than 25 percent of stock is owned or
      controlled by aliens or their representatives, or a
      foreign government, when the public interest would be
      served by refusal of a license
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    Hot Topics in Communications Law
• Broadband

• Convergence

• Net Neutrality




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