Net Neutrality fighters to head Obama's FCC transition team

Obama's FCC transition team is to be headed up by two of the smartest, hardest-fighting Net Neutrality advocates I know: Susan Crawford and Kevin Werbach. This bodes very very well indeed for American telcoms policy!
Ms. Crawford is a former partner of a Washington law firm that specializes in communications law and recently left the board of directors of ICANN, a group that oversees Internet domain-name registration. Mr. Werbach edited Release 1.0, a technology newsletter, and founded Supernova Group, a technology analysis and consulting firm.

The Obama transition team includes a number of former FCC officials, but under the conflict-of-interest rules adopted by the president-elect’s team, many may be barred from directly examining FCC issues.

President-elect Obama’s office said today that Ms. Crawford and Mr. Werbach are part of the Science, Tech, Space and Arts Team that will be directed by Tom Wheeler, a former president of National Cable and Telecommunications.

Obama Assembles FCC Transition Team (via Joi)


  1. Fantastic news! Now get Lessig lined up for that CTO cabinet position and my head will probably explode and spew forth candy and confetti.

    Don’t worry- I’ll pull my jacket down and you’ll be able to see that my head was really there the whole time.

  2. You know, it’s really going to take some time to get used to the idea of having a government that’s trying to make the world better rather than worse.

  3. I’m going to go out on a limb, and say that I owe my career choice to Kevin Werbach. In 1996 and 1997, when I was learning to make web pages, his Bare Bones Guide to HTML was indespensible. If he hadn’t made such a nicely organized reference, I probably wouldn’t have stuck with it.

    As things have changed, and XHTML is the standard these days, it’s now horribly out of date, but it’s still there.

  4. yes #5, as active practices that don’t abide by the principles of net neutrality are extremely damaging to the internet’s integrity.

    To quote from google’s “guide to net neutrality..”
    “Fundamentally, net neutrality is about equal access to the Internet. In our view, the broadband carriers should not be permitted to use their market power to discriminate against competing applications or content. Just as telephone companies are not permitted to tell consumers who they can call or what they can say, broadband carriers should not be allowed to use their market power to control activity online”

    Are you REALLY opposed to that? REALLY?

  5. Could we change it to “Fighters *for* Net Neutrality”? After all the other bad news about appointees I read this as being yet another betrayal.

  6. #5: It’s not quite that clear-cut. My (mobile) phone company *does* charge me more for calling certain individuals.

    Calling Verizon customers is free…. Calling anyone else costs an arm and a leg.

    Using the phone companies as your defense is *never* a good idea.

  7. Correction: Tom Wheeler was president of CTIA (Cellular Telcommunications and Internet Association), now dba CTIA–The Wireless Association.

  8. Yay! I’m glad this is going somewhere. It is so exciting to have a pro-Internet president-elect during the time I am studying to be a web designer/developer. This bodes well for me.

    I, too, thought this was something else at first. Probably should change the title.

  9. @5 – Hyde

    If you’re really opposed to Net Neutrality could you at least supply one reason to be opposed to it? More reasons would be good and if none of them involve you being the CEO of a large corporation that may benefit substantially from the ability to control what people view then all the better.

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