Senate Introduces “Sweeping Telecom Bill”

(From Multichannel News)

"Senate Commerce Committee chairman Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) Monday introduced a sweeping 135-page bill designed to overhaul the nation’s telecommunications laws in a blueprint for change in the digital age that covers cable franchising, rural phone subsidies, Internet network neutrality, sports programming and Internet piracy of digital-TV programming.

The bill was introduced by Stevens with only lukewarm support from his panel’s ranking member, Sen. Daniel Inouye (D-Hawaii), who called for major changes before he could fully embrace the effort.

AT&T Inc. — which, along with Verizon Communications Inc., has been urging Congress to eliminate local franchising — praised the Stevens bill but did not endorse it, probably because the measure did not allow new cable entrants to bypass the local approval process and avoid explicit buildout requirements."

Read the article.

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