RUS, FCC, BIP, USF and Other Acronyms

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| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

RUS, FCC, BIP, USF and Other Acronyms

The Big Boy telecom advocacy groups and pundits are spinning that the FCC is overstepping its bounds. Headline from Forbes and their law + technology columnist: FCC's First Net Neutrality Fine Heralds The Big Internet Chill. This was followed up by headlines about FCC Chair Wheeler over-stepping, arm-twisting and misusing his office.

AT&T gets a $100M fine for selling unlimited accounts that were impaired for big users. The FCC had to fine them because the FTC did NOT do its job. And then ISPs are bewildered by that? How? It is false advertising. It is total BS. What it really is: Big ISP wondering how their money didn't oil the gears.

Forbes pundit, Fred Campbell, writes a lot about the overstepping of the FCC. Does he notice the lack of effort at the other F-agencies (FTA, FDA, FAA)? Or that there is a huge transition going on that isn't just about the technology - copper or fiber or spectrum, it is about migrating many moving parts - LNP, E-911, broadband, voice, et al - and thousands of players to the new platform. Also, the telcos are sloughing off copper for a number of reasons - unions, pensions, competitors - none of which has to do with next gen networks or tech.

The FCC's main job is to protect Consumers. Have you seen the number of outages including on E-911 systems lately? How about the 2,000 consumers who complained to the regulators about slow Internet, high prices, and data caps from top ISPs? That is why the Net Neutrality laws are being used as a hammer. From a business aspect, you may not like the uncertainty of it, but from a user angle it is about freaking time.

Want to get rid of the uncertainty? Then (a) stop lying in ads about unlimited; (b) build the network you keep promising; (c) put all that spectrum you are hording into play; (d) take care of your customers and deliver on promises. It is that simple.

Politco has a report on the RUS department's failure (?) at administering the BIP broadband stimulus fund of $3.5 billion. More than 40 BIP projects never got started - out of 255 projects funded.

"A POLITICO investigation has found that roughly half of the nearly 300 projects RUS approved as part of the 2009 Recovery Act have not yet drawn down the full amounts they were awarded. All RUS-funded infrastructure projects were supposed to have completed construction by the end of June," the report reads.

" As stimulus-funded networks were built, the RUS was not tracking the number of locations reached or the number of customers who had signed up for service, the GAO noted." [telecompetitor]

Both the Telecompetitor article and the Politico report are good reads. Did they do poor management? Absolutely. One reason: Politics. Failures at both RUS and NTIA were kept quiet for political reasons. Plus those who won awards -- picked by a volunteer collection of people - - may not have been in a position to carry out the project or even the reporting. Florida's NRBA and its management crew had lots of screw ups and failures along the way. It is the government trough.

In the wake of USF Reform and the CAF Trials, 15 Small Telcos Could Lose USF Support: FCC Analysis Shows 100% Competitive Overlap. And 11 more may be voted off the island by you.

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