Friday, December 03, 2010

USA - FCC Chairman endorses higher charges for heavy users (e.g., video and games)

[wsj] The top U.S. telecommunications regulator on Wednesday endorsed the idea that broadband providers could charge extra for providing heavy Internet users with lots of online video or data-heavy services such as videogames.

Julius Genachowski, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, backed "usage-based pricing" while outlining proposed rules that would bar Internet providers from deliberately tampering or slowing legal Web traffic.

Mr. Genachowski's support for pay-as-you-go pricing represents a victory for cable and telecommunications companies because it clarified whether broadband providers had the power to charge by what users consumed.

"We were appreciative of them clarifying it," said AT&T Inc. Senior Vice President Robert W. Quinn Jr.

But communications providers may still get pushback from consumers, Silicon Valley and lawmakers on pay-as-you-pricing depending on how network operators implement such plans.

FCC Chief Backs Usage-Based Broadband Pricing

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