Competify Campaign Hopes to Cure Broadband Blues

Group including BT, Level 3, Sprint and XO launches campaign to encourage the FCC to adopt rules that would protect smaller broadband competitors against "huge Internet gatekeepers."

Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms

July 13, 2015

2 Min Read
Competify Campaign Hopes to Cure Broadband Blues

A new coalition including Sprint, BT, XO, Level 3 and others has joined forces to send a message to the FCC: The broadband industry is sick, and new rules to protect competition are the cure.

The campaign, called "Competify" and kicked off with a full-page ad in The New York Times, uses a medical theme to make the point that more competition is needed to offset the "chronic disease" that is the "powerful few" that "control our broadband pipelines," making them more expensive and slow.

The group includes the Ad Hoc Telecommunications Users Committee, Broadband Coalition, BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA), Competitive Carriers Association (CCA), Incompas , Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA), Engine, Level 3 Communications Inc. (NYSE: LVLT), Public Knowledge , Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) and XO Communications Inc.

Their aim is to influence the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to "protect consumers and American businesses from price gouging." The campaign site reads, "The Commission can stop these dominant companies from using their market power to extract unjust and unreasonable rates over these critical broadband inputs. The future of competition depends on the FCC. The FCC must try Competify." (See FCC Chairman Talks Up SDN/NFV.)

For more on broadband competition in the US and abroad, visit the dedicated Gigabit/broadband content channel here on Light Reading.

More specifically, the group is hoping to influence the FCC's upcoming competitive access proceeding, in which it will decide whether small carriers should get special access to last-mile resources as they transition their networks to all-IP. That IP transition decision is on the FCC docket for August.

A source tells Multichannel News that recent net neutrality scuttlebutt and mergers, including the land grab for Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC), also sparked the formation of the group. (See FCC Sets Up Review Team for Charter Deals, Charter Seals Deals for TWC, Bright House and Comcast Formally Ends Its Bid for TWC.)

— Sarah Thomas, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editorial Operations Director, Light Reading

About the Author(s)

Sarah Thomas

Director, Women in Comms

Sarah Thomas's love affair with communications began in 2003 when she bought her first cellphone, a pink RAZR, which she duly "bedazzled" with the help of superglue and her dad.

She joined the editorial staff at Light Reading in 2010 and has been covering mobile technologies ever since. Sarah got her start covering telecom in 2007 at Telephony, later Connected Planet, may it rest in peace. Her non-telecom work experience includes a brief foray into public relations at Fleishman-Hillard (her cussin' upset the clients) and a hodge-podge of internships, including spells at Ingram's (Kansas City's business magazine), American Spa magazine (where she was Chief Hot-Tub Correspondent), and the tweens' quiz bible, QuizFest, in NYC.

As Editorial Operations Director, a role she took on in January 2015, Sarah is responsible for the day-to-day management of the non-news content elements on Light Reading.

Sarah received her Bachelor's in Journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She lives in Chicago with her 3DTV, her iPad and a drawer full of smartphone cords.

Away from the world of telecom journalism, Sarah likes to dabble in monster truck racing, becoming part of Team Bigfoot in 2009.

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