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[pdf09] Blair Levin on the Broadband Initiative

Blair Levin heads the national broadband initiative.

NOTE: Live-blogging. Getting things wrong. Missing points. Omitting key information. Introducing artificial choppiness. Over-emphasizing small matters. Paraphrasing badly. Not running a spellpchecker. Mangling other people’s ideas and words. You are warned, people.

He says he can’t tell us what will be in the initiative because he doesn’t know. He’s been working on the process, which will be “open and public.” The process will be transparent, inclusive, participatory, and citizens are “Priority Number One.”

The process will be data-driven, rather than starting from the conclusions.

He asks whether 40% is larger than 108%. He says a telco says 40% is larger, pointing to a chart that shows that investment went up 40% after deregulation, but missing the data on the very same chart that shows it went up 108% after regulation. This, Blair says, violates a fundamental law of lobbying: Don’t show data that contradicts your point on the very same chart. He says we need to look at the whole broadband ecology, not at how a single sector does. He says that his team is going to take the task very seriously. And, he says, he’s sure they’ll say some dumb things and make some mistakes. He asks for leeway (as per Jeff Jarvis) to make some mistakes.

The result will be a plan, not a report. Recommendations. The policy decisions will be made by the FCC, not by Blair’s group.

He asks for our help. 1. Study the law requesting the broadband plan. 2. Attend the July 2nd FCC meeting. 3. Go to (It’s not up yet.) 4. Participate in the foming events and workshops. 5. Give them your best ideas.

[Great to hear this sort of clear commitment and clear talk. Now there’s a panel, which I’m not going to try to liveblog…]

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