Federal Communications Commission

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Wired for Social Justice

January 25th, 2010 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

This past Friday, Blair Levin, Executive Director, Omnibus Broadband Initiative, delivered a speech entitled 'Wired for Social Justice.'  Blair spoke at the Minority Media and Telecommunications Council's Broadband and Social Justice Summit this past Friday. 


When President Eisenhower was desegregating schools and the Armed Forces, he said: “there must be no second class citizens in this country.”

No one in this room would argue. But as society changes, the attributes of citizenship can change as well.

And so in every age the question must be asked anew: “Are our policies contributing to a form of second class citizenship?”

This is a question we have spent a great deal of time—difficult time—working on as we try to develop a national broadband plan.

And that is what I want to talk about today.

I want to have a frank conversation about how we can ensure that in a society in which citizens increasingly interact, transact, communicate, collaborate, contribute and work online, digital citizenship is denied to no one.

Over the last thirty years, we have seen increases in income inequality, residential segregation and social isolation, and the concentration of disadvantage.

The number of neighborhoods today with a dangerous poverty rate—poverty above 30%-- is higher than it was in 2000.

In areas with a dense concentration of poverty, jobs disappear. Opportunity disappears.  The American tradition of justice, of achieving the American dream, emphasizes equality of opportunity – of having access to equal sets of resources that can enable us, our families, our children to succeed.

Let me be clear: access to high-speed Internet, even when paired with the digital skills needed to use it, is not a guarantee of such opportunity – it also requires values such as hard work and diligence that neither technology nor government can provide.

But broadband can help people get access to better jobs, better education, better health care information and improved government services.

And those services should be accessible anytime, anywhere, not requiring a day spent traveling to and waiting in line at government welfare offices in the midst of a workday.

This is no theoretical exercise. Connecting those previously excluded can bring real results.

(Continue reading here...)



Chairman Genachowski's Message to the National Town Hall

January 19th, 2010 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

Below are the welcoming video remarks by Chairman Julius Genachowski to today's National Town Hall.



[Cross-posted on the Open Internet Blog.]

Chairman Genachowski - Live at GigaOM

January 6th, 2010 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

Chairman Julius Genachowski is discussing Broadband Policy at GigaOM in San Francisco.  Watch the event live:

The Live Stream has ended.  You can view the archived video here

[Cross-posted at]


Thoughts from the Chairman...

November 19th, 2009 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

Chairman Genachowski discusses the Open Commission Meeting at which the FCC heard a presentation from the Omnibus Broadband Initiative:


Marlee's Remarks

November 16th, 2009 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

The FCC held a field hearing at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C. on November 6, 2009 as part of its effort to gather information from experts and consumers for the development of a National Broadband Plan. Among those on the first panel was Academy Award-winning actress Marlee Matlin, who is the spokesperson for the National Association of the Deaf for accessible broadband services and Internet media.


Live FCC Field Hearing - Mobile Applications and Spectrum

October 8th, 2009 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

Gray BBAs part of its effort to gather information for the development of a National Broadband Plan, the FCC will hold a field hearing in San Diego Thursday focused on the transformational change that is resulting from the confluence of mobility and broadband. Tune in today at noon (EDT) to watch the event live at  You can also watch the event live and discuss it with others at Facebook.

The hearing will provide a West Coast perspective on spectrum availability, mobile applications, and the role that they play in the development of America's broadband  infrastructure. The Commission will be represented by Chairman Julius Genachowski and Commissioner Meredith Attwell Baker.

Field Hearing in Charleston, SC - Streaming Live Now

October 6th, 2009 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

Gray BBGo to to watch FCC Commissioners Copps and Clyburn in Charleston, SC.  You can also tune in and comment on Facebook, too.  The Field Hearing is on Broadband Adoption.

For the Q&A session, send in your questions via Twitter (#BBwkshp) to be asked in the room.

FCC Hearing - watch @

October 1st, 2009 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

Gray BBTune in now to watch the FCC Hearing on Capital Formation in the Broadband Sector. You can find the agenda and presentations here.

For the Q&A session, send in your questions via Twitter (#BBwkshp) to be asked in the room.

Collaborating On Bringing Broadband To People With Disabilities

September 18th, 2009 by Gray Brooks - FCC New Media

Today, we are launching a new category on Blogband called "disabilities access."  In this category, we will start with five posts tracking the five panels that we have tentatively proposed for our October 20th follow-up workshop on disabilities access.  The first five posts solicit information relating to workshop planning and policy issues on the following topics:

  • Accessibility and Affordability Barriers Faced by People with Disabilities
  • Technological Barriers and Solutions
  • Furthering National Purposes and People with Disabilities
  • Federal, State, and Local Resources to Make Broadband Accessible and Affordable to People with Disabilities
  • Policy Solutions and Recommendations

This new process has tremendous potential to shape our work on the national broadband plan.  It will allow many more people to have input on the structure and substance of our upcoming workshop.  It will also make possible in-depth, collaborative discussions on complex topics - of which there are many.  In sum, we hope to facilitate an iterative process in which diverse parties can build from and react to the ideas of others, in a productive and thoughtful manner.  And, of course, we welcome your ideas about how we can make this process more accessible.

Capture The Phone Numbers Using Your Camera Phone

If you have a camera and a 2D matrix code reader on your mobile phone, you can capture the FCC Phone numbers right to your phone by following these three easy steps:
Step 1: Take a photograph of one of the codes below using the camera on your mobile phone.
Step 2: Use your phone's Datamatrix or QR Code reader to decode the information on the photograph. Please note, these code readers are device specific and are available to download on the internet.
Step 3: Store the decoded address information to your phone's address book and use it with your Maps or GPS application.

Datamatrix and QR FCC Phones