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How AT&T, Verizon and the Telecom Giants Have Captured the Regulator Supposed to Control Them

Our telecom industry's overseer doesn't seem to have any control to stop the greed. That's because it's a puppet of the industry giants.

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“I rise today to talk about the growing threat of corporate control on the flow of information in this country,” he stated. And added the following caution: “… while we debate these issues [of jobs] in front of the public, behind the scenes -- away from public scrutiny -- the Federal Communications Commission is about to decide two distinct, but closely related issues, that have the potential to change dramatically the way we get our entertainment; the way we communicate with one another; and most importantly, the way we use the Internet.”

Regulatory capture is clearly playing a role in the FCC’s deliberations and approval of the proposed Comcast-NBCU merger. The head of NCL, which played a key role in the original CALLS program, services as chair of the FCC Consumer Advisory Committee. And Sam Simon, of ICI and himself a former NCL chair, now serves as NCL’s Treasurer.

Time passes, but nothing changes.

David Rosen is author of Off-Hollywood: The Making & Marketing of Independent Films and a regular contributor to CounterPunch, Z-magazine and other publications. He can be reached at Bruce Kushnick is a telecommunications industry analyst who serves as the broadband and telecommunications expert for the Nieman Watchdog. He can be reached at

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