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FCC Mulling More Control For Electronic Media

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the yeah-that-sounds-fantastic dept.

Government 176

A recent Notice of Inquiry from the FCC is looking for opinions on how the "evolving electronic media landscape" affects kids, and whether the FCC itself should have more regulatory control over such media. The full NOI (PDF) is available online. "FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski included a statement with the NOI in which he noted that 'twenty years ago, parents worried about one or two TV sets in the house,' while today, media choices are far more widespread for children, including videogames, which 'have become a prevalent entertainment source in millions of homes and a daily reality for millions of kids.'"

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176 comments

tired of this "control the internet for the kids" (5, Insightful)

thehostiles (1659283) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922313)

it's always "protect the children" I spent all of my childhood past the age of 8 online and did I get abducted? did I become a horrible person? no did I become much more resourceful and patient in understanding computers? yes did I learn? yes enough ideas without statistics I say

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (5, Informative)

ircmaxell (1117387) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922335)

I agree 100%... The more "responsibility" the government takes, the less the parents will take. And IMHO that's the fundamental problem that has yet to be addressed... Fewer and fewer parents actually parenting and taking responsibility for their own children.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922441)

Seems like someone in your government has seen our ofcom here in the UK and thinks it would be a good thing. I reckon that if you can't control firearms, why worry about electronic media.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (3, Insightful)

LordAndrewSama (1216602) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922681)

Firearms are just another means of killing people, Ideas could instill hundreds, thousands or millions with the desire to kill(hence the revolutions of the past) and they'll achieve it with/without firearms if motivated enough. I imagine many governments see ideas as far more dangerous than guns.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (2, Interesting)

Psyborgue (699890) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923131)

True, but guns make the task a whole lot easier.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (2, Insightful)

uncanny (954868) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924685)

so do poisons, knives, cars, broken shards of glass, icepicks, etc... i dont want them holding my hand for everything, i'd rather die free than live over-controlled!

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (5, Insightful)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922559)

"it's always "protect the children" I spent all of my childhood past the age of 8 online and did I get abducted? did I become a horrible person? no did I become much more resourceful and patient in understanding computers? yes did I learn? yes enough ideas without statistics I say"

You think YOU had a dangerous childhood??

Hell, I grew up with no cell phones, my parents both worked, yet I came home to a house alone (when very young I walked 2 blocks to and from school), I played in the neighborhood with neighborhood kids, roamed all over (again without tracking and cell phones), I ran around in the woods with BB and pellet guns, we 'stole' wood from local houses being built to build makeshift skateboard ramps (and sometimes forts in the woods). Goodness, when we went to a mall, my parents would set up a meeting time and place, and we'd go our separate ways for 2-3 hours at a time, yes, I wondered around unsupervised?!?!? Yep, I dove off diving boards in swimming pools! I got dropped off to hang at the arcades for hours at a time. I had a pretty wide area to cover at any given time by walking, bicycling, skateboarding....while never wearing a helment.

Yep, it is amazing myself and my friends made it past puberty!! By today's scared standards of treating children, we should have all been killed by and accident, if not abducted, raped and killed first...and of course, our parents would have been arrested for child neglect.

Amazing we all made it to even see the dawn of the internet and video games with good graphics...

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

D Ninja (825055) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922683)

...your childhood sounds pretty fun.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (4, Insightful)

WaywardGeek (1480513) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922843)

We both must be about the same age - I'm 45. It just kills me that we have to have "play dates" for my kids to play with other kids, and my kids don't venture into the woods the way I liked so much as a kid. We agree that today's environment of fear is just that - pointless fear, driven by the media.

Anyway, some things are different today. My introduction to porn was sneaking peaks at my Dad's Playboy magazines, which he would read while Mom cleaned and cooked and held down a job. Dad's back then had it all - no poopy diapers, wives who did all the housework and had paying jobs, and who felt guilty if you didn't get enough sex...

Today, kids don't get that sneak-peek into porn when they finally become curious about sex. And, let's face it... Playboy had a sense of class and beauty missing from redtube.com. Instead, eight-year girls type "hot guy" into Google, and get hard-core video. Their intro into the idea of sex is likely going to be a foot-long dong butt-f*cking a teenager.

I took advice I got here on slashdot, and use the free opendns.com DNS filter. I also use addblock plus in firefox on all our computers. OpenDNS gives me some control over the content filiter - I use the low settings, only blocking phishing and hard-core porn. These tools are waaaaay better than anything the FCC might dream up. Instead of more government censorship, how about a program for training/educating parents, so we can all learn how to take advantage of the excellent, and free tools that already exist out there? Something as simple as requiring ISPs to send information packets about Internet filtering might do the trick. Perhaps requiring the installers who do house visits to train how to filter, not just how to use the DVR. All parents know how to record Pokemon. How many know how to protect their kids from googling "hot guys"?

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29923449)

'dong', 'butt-f*cking'?

I wish they had a fucking filter for this type of shit so I could avoid the posts of dumb cunts who self-censor with bullshit replacements for curse words.

Either use the right ones or none at all, you're neither looking cool nor adding emphasis to your statements when you incorporate those words into your posts.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

Sgt. B (926642) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923651)

I agree. The sheer level of vulgarity in content is so different. Porn isn't the only thing either.

I had a friend who's daughter searched for 'kitten' and found some sick site where they mutilate cats. Several parents in different associations bombarded the host of the site and we got it shut down.

There is some really disgusting stuff out there and it's all just 3 clicks away. I've said it before, I wish there were some plan in place to allow parents more control so people who just don't care are not bothered with this subject.

Speaking of which, for all those who are so vocal against this but do not have children... this subject does not pertain to you. Please close this tab and go back to watching porn.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (3, Insightful)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923761)

Speaking of which, for all those who are so vocal against this but do not have children... this subject does not pertain to you.

If you are talking about things that parents can do themselves you are correct but if you plan to use the force of law to regulate my behavior then it absolutely pertains to me, children or not.

responsibility is yours (4, Interesting)

poptones (653660) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924413)

There are SCADS of "plans" in place to afford you all the control you could want - right up to and including NOT putting a computer in your kid's room or even NOT having an internet connection to the house. On the shiny side of that there's DNS solutions, filtering software and even learning to use the goddamn HOSTS file in your own computer.

Your right to raise your kids does not trump another's right to indulge in whatever perversion tickles their fancy nor does it trump yet another's right to express said perversions. Deal with it.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

wrencherd (865833) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922977)

You were lucky.

When I was young we couldn't get cell phone service, dsl nor did we have bicycles and we lived in a small shoebox in the middle of the road.

Every night at midnight we'd have to get up out of the shoebox and lick the road clean with our tongues, then we'd go to work 24 hours at the mill for fourpence every six years . . . or was that "sixpence every four years"?

Try telling that to the FCC today. . . they won't believe you.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923465)

Not to justify the "think of the children" antics that politicians so love these days, but the "I survived just fine!" tirade always strikes me as amusing.

Regardless of the risks, the fact that you're fine is no shock because there will always been somebody to tell that story. The kids that don't make it aren't around to tell their story.

To put it into statistical perspective, lets exaggerate a bit (ok, a lot :)) and say that all those activities you listed has a 40% chance of resulting in death or dismemberment. Is that an acceptable statistic? Absolutely not, yet you'd still have 60% of people sarcastically proclaiming "Hey I did all that stuff as a kid. How did I possibly survive!?!?". The answer is simple: you survived because you were in the group that fell on that side of the equation. That doesn't mean though that any legislation that drops that accident rate from 40% to 0.05% is wasted effort though.

Now, that's not to say that the FCC is right here. I'm just saying that there's a line somewhere between nanny state saying "no porn on the internet because it's bad for the kids" and giving all the kids dynamite at school because a few will still happen to grow up and proclaim that their survival is proof that the activity is safe.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (2, Insightful)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923701)

Regardless of the risks, the fact that you're fine is no shock because there will always been somebody to tell that story. The kids that don't make it aren't around to tell their story.

A better way to use anecdote would be to ask, "How many of the people I went to grade school with were abducted by strangers" vs. "How many of the people I went to school with were hurt in car accidents?"

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923883)

They also ignore the reality of saturation marketing, not just targeted at children generally but specifically adjusted to each childs profile to more effectively control the decisions and to more accurately distort the child's future psychological growth to more profitably align with the highest bidders marketing dollars.

Consider the real underlying nature of that profession. Adults trained as psychologists who use their education and skills to manipulate vulnerable children so that they can be more profitably be monetized. Not only do those adults shameless manipulate children against the child's best interest, these adults take pride in their ability to, let's see, create peer pressure responses where children who do not adhere to the current marketing promotions are ostracized and punished by other children, where future unhealthy psychological conditions are imprinted upon the children so they are forced to attempt buy the way out of the unhappiness forced upon them by adults and of course to get tchildren to manipulate the choices of their parents.

Considering the motivation, nothing but greed, the unfair advantage of adults manipulating children and the inherent harm that results, it really it is a matter of marketing executives molesting the minds of the world's children, psychological pedophiles of the worst order, it really is nasty stuff.

As for porn on the Internet, the reality is the Internet is an adult network not meant for children, if anybody is serious about a child safe Internet that is has to be completely separate from the interactions between adults and specifically monitored, secured and built around the education system and from which all marketing executives are specifically banned.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (2, Insightful)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924105)

"Regardless of the risks, the fact that you're fine is no shock because there will always been somebody to tell that story. The kids that don't make it aren't around to tell their story.

To put it into statistical perspective, lets exaggerate a bit (ok, a lot :)) and say that all those activities you listed has a 40% chance of resulting in death or dismemberment. Is that an acceptable statistic? Absolutely not, yet you'd still have 60% of people sarcastically proclaiming "Hey I did all that stuff as a kid. How did I possibly survive!?!?". The answer is simple: you survived because you were in the group that fell on that side of the equation. That doesn't mean though that any legislation that drops that accident rate from 40% to 0.05% is wasted effort though."

Err...the point of my anecdotal rant wasn't so much that only I survived due to the things I did. It was more that my entire generation, and generations before mine that did just fine without 24/7 instant communications, and did just fine playing outdoors all the time doing things that would be considered too dangerous for little Johnny and Susie to do today.

My point is the mentality has changed so drastically, that our precious children are so helpless, and need overprotection...and now we're trying more and more to mandate it into LAW that affects not only kids behavior, but, also that of adults wanting to do adult things.

I have a hard time believing that there are more child sex offenders, abductors or what have you out there today than in past years. Maybe a few more, but, not so many as to warrant the fear and overprotection measures out there today. I say it is more the instant communication, and the multitude of 24/7 news channels that have to have something to report that is sensational enough to gather large commercial watching crowds.

But really, those things I listed I did as a kid, were NOT done alone...I had friends, lots of friends who were there doing that stuff with me. Most all kids my age were doing shit like that...it was known back then at "being a kid".

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (2, Insightful)

Just Some Guy (3352) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924183)

Hell, I grew up with no cell phones, [...] while never wearing a helment.

Same here to all the above.

I contend that the world today is no less safe for kids, but that every single bad thing that may happen is broadcast nationally in lurid detail. My father-in-law is convinced that there's a pedo behind every tree and that I'm stupid for not being more worried about it (yes: those were his words). Does anyone know where I could find stats on things like abductions by strangers that would show wish view is more accurate?

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

brkello (642429) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924253)

Maybe your parents didn't love you.

Putting opponents on the defensive (3, Insightful)

Shivetya (243324) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922669)

is a tried and true practice.

As such, they try and pick a category which is nearly indefensible. Children work very well.

The trick is not allowing yourself to be intimidated by this type of tactics. Look at the debates over health care, stimulus, and such. Who do they put into the argument who doesn't have bearing on what you were addressing? Children, the poor, the elderly, or the "insert favored group here". All in an attempt to change the discussion just enough to devalue your stand.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

cheshiremoe (1448979) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922905)

Hasn't the internet been changing rapidly since you were a kid? While porn has long been on the internet, there is a lot more Adult content online now besides porn. Violent movies and games often have far less safe guards for restricting access to minors. While I don't think that the government is capable of comprehensively protecting kids from the evils of the internet, some guide lines for larger content providers would not be out of the order. Parents need to be the responsible party and pay attention to what there kids are doing/seeing with all the content devices out there like consoles, PCs, Cell Phones and now e-readers! I have yet to hear about Sex-ting with calculators yet though.

That was then. This is now. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922919)

Before government control the internet for the kids was bad. Now it is good.

Anyone who can't see this obvious truth is clearly racist.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (3, Insightful)

INT_QRK (1043164) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923027)

The Nanny state. The "useful idiots" who voted this crowd in are getting what they deserve.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

gedrin (1423917) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924395)

The, as you put it, "useful idiots" are getting what they deserve.

Problem is, everyone else is also getting what the "useful idiots" deserve.

It's Not About "Kids;" That's Just the Ruse (5, Informative)

RobotRunAmok (595286) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923101)

If the government said, "Y'know, we'd like to exert more control over the blogosphere, over all electronic media, really: restrict what is said, know the identities of who is saying it, get a firm handle on who is on the mailing lists of Markos Moulitsas and Rush Limbaugh... whaddya say, citizens, can we do that?" the answer would be a resounding, "Over Our Dead Body."

The "kids" thing is the spoonful of sugar that makes the tyranny go down...

Re:It's Not About "Kids;" That's Just the Ruse (0, Redundant)

Dragonslicer (991472) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924195)

If the government said, "Y'know, we'd like to exert more control over the blogosphere, over all electronic media, really: restrict what is said, know the identities of who is saying it, get a firm handle on who is on the mailing lists of Markos Moulitsas and Rush Limbaugh... whaddya say, citizens, can we do that?" the answer would be a resounding, "Who won American Idol last night?"

Fixed that for you. Your faith in humanity is admirable, but unfortunately I don't think it matches reality too well.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (2, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923173)

it's always "protect the children" I spent all of my childhood past the age of 8 online and did I get abducted? did I become a horrible person?

Well, you're here, aren't you? ;)

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

Sgt. B (926642) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923285)

Back when you were 8 it was much different and there was much less available. Today's internet is quite different.

I wish there was something better in place to allow parents easier control so the gov. doesn't need to get involved and people who just don't give a crap don't have to be bothered. Personally, I use OpenDNS but not all parents might know how to and it can't block everything.

From a parent's perspective, try to imagine having a 7 year old daughter who is having nightmares because she looked up 'kitten' while you were making dinner and she came across kitten mutilation and just watched someone butcher a live cat for fun. Some limits need to be put in place because there are really sick people out there. 'Click here to proceed' and 'you must be 18' just won't cut it.

Thanks to the internet, I don't have to drive my kids to the red light district so they can play in the park across from prostitutes and sex shops while watching drug dealers sell drugs and having other kids show them how to sniff chemicals to get high or become bulimic because it's beautiful.. The internet brings that all to my living room. Oh and I can check email too.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923531)

and just watched someone butcher a live cat for fun

Is it any different if a person butchers a cat for food? My parents participated in butchering chickens as when they were children. My siblings and I watched our father butcher a deer about once per year. Maybe it's sick to raise children without an understanding and appreciation of where their food comes from.

Some limits need to be put in place because there are really sick people out there. 'Click here to proceed' and 'you must be 18' just won't cut it.

Thanks to the internet, I don't have to drive my kids to the red light district so they can play in the park across from prostitutes and sex shops while watching drug dealers sell drugs and having other kids show them how to sniff chemicals to get high or become bulimic because it's beautiful.. The internet brings that all to my living room. Oh and I can check email too.

No one is forcing you to give your children unsupervised access to the internet, but for some reason you want to force the entire rest of the world to change their behavior to suit your particular parenting style.

Re:tired of this "control the internet for the kid (1)

imakemusic (1164993) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924847)

enough ideas without statistics I say

That's a nice idea, but I'd like to see some statistics that back it up.

Physical activity. (4, Interesting)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922323)

The worst problem with video games and things like that is the lower level of physical activity among the young.

Earlier there was the option to stay in and be bored or go out and face the elements. This day you go out on the net and there is no need for a garden, football or playing in the mud.

Re:Physical activity. (1)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922347)

Oh stop reinventing the past.

Before video games, there was a wide range of active and sedate activities to choose from.

Re:Physical activity. (2, Insightful)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922591)

Before video games, there was a wide range of active and sedate activities to choose from.

But the sedate ones couldn't trick your brain into thinking you're being active (pumping adrenaline, etc).

Re:Physical activity. (1)

MadnessASAP (1052274) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922651)

I dunno, those D&D kids could get pretty into it.

Re:Physical activity. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922805)

Like those kids who would go into the sewers and pretend they were monster-infested mazes. I hear one kid died! True story! I think his name was Forrest or something!

Re:Physical activity. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922891)

D&D came after video games...

Re:Physical activity. (1)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923185)

D&D came after video games...

After arcades, but before games that you could play in your own house. D&D was published in 1974. Pong didn't get realeased in a home version until 1975.

Re:Physical activity. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922415)

The same has been said about TV.
The same has been said about books.
etc.

Older generations always criticise change brought about by younger generations.

Re:Physical activity. (1)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922579)

"Earlier there was the option to stay in and be bored or go out and face the elements. This day you go out on the net and there is no need for a garden, football or playing in the mud."

Hmm...did they outlaw "kill the man with the ball" for today's kids, due to it causing self-esteem issues, or is the liability insurance too much these days in our litigious society?

Re:Physical activity. (1)

xaxa (988988) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922767)

Hmm...did they outlaw "kill the man with the ball" for today's kids

No, but kids spend less time playing outside nowadays as they have more options inside.

I think I spent far too much time inside when I was young, and I'm less healthy as a result (I'm underweight), but that was mostly because of my parents not letting me go anywhere and nothing to do with the government.

Re:Physical activity. (2, Informative)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922749)

More kids are killed by football and other physical activities than surfing on the net or videogaming.

Re:Physical activity. (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923943)

The worst problem with video games and things like that is the lower level of physical activity among the young.

How is that different than TV?

Re:Physical activity. (2, Informative)

tepples (727027) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924197)

The worst problem with video games and things like that is the lower level of physical activity among the young.

How much of that is due to video games like Dance Dance Revolution and Wii Sports, and how much of that is due to parents keeping their kids indoors due to media-charged fear of child molesters?

Quoting Eric Idle (4, Funny)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922351)

Fuck you very much the FCC; fuck you very much for fining me. Five thousand bucks a fuck so I'm really out of luck: thats more than Heidi Fliess was charging me. So fuck you very much the FCC, for proving that free speech just isn't free. Clear Channel's a dear channel so Howard Stern must go. Attorney General Ashcroft doesn't like strong words and so. He's charging twice as much as all the drugs for Rush Limbo, so fuck you all so very much. [youtube.com]

Opinions? (2, Informative)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922411)

Ok, I've been looking but I don't see anywhere on the FCC website to actually give them feedback.

Re:Opinions? (3, Funny)

Megane (129182) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922581)

Ok, I've been looking but I don't see anywhere on the FCC website to actually give them feedback.

That's because they're in control of their own Electronic Media.

The FCC is useless. (5, Insightful)

purpledinoz (573045) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922417)

While the FCC thoroughly investigated Janet Jackson's wardrobe malfunction, they allowed Clear Channel to buy up all the radio stations without even blinking. When Sirius and XM wanted to merge, they took years to decide whether strong competition against terrestrial radio should be allowed (Clear Channel and the NAB lobbied against the merger hoping both Sirius and XM would fail). The FCC is useless and should not be given more power.

Re:The FCC is useless. (3, Funny)

TraumaFox (1667643) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922497)

The FCC thoroughly investigated Janet Jackson's wardrobe malfunction because when it happened, the skies darkened, thunderous roars of a hundred thousand demons echoed across the countryside, a rain of blood flooded the land, and the most unspeakable horrors imaginable swept the United States into the most ridiculous debacle of overreaction in recorded history. What was the FCC supposed to do, just ignore the millions of Americans crying foul about their psychologically damaged children? No, we -demanded- they do something about it, because Janet Jackson's apocalyptic misdeed was more important than Clear Channel or SiriusXM.

The FCC is making smart moves with this and, recently, the net neutrality topic as well. They're asking for opinions, because they ultimately serve the American people. If they are indeed "useless", it's through no fault of their own, it's because the people they serve made them that way.

Re:The FCC is useless. (2, Funny)

cayenne8 (626475) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922599)

"The FCC thoroughly investigated Janet Jackson's wardrobe malfunction because when it happened, the skies darkened, thunderous roars of a hundred thousand demons echoed across the countryside, a rain of blood flooded the land, and the most unspeakable horrors imaginable swept the United States into the most ridiculous debacle of overreaction in recorded history."

Yeah, that was one ugly saggy tit that's for sure!!!

Man, for some reason I'd expected Janet to have kept her 'rack' in much better condition!!

Re:The FCC is useless. (3, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922619)

I bet when the FCC's done, "net neutrality" will have evolved into something unrecognizable, more akin to censorship of our personal blogs and emails (and probably bittorrent too) rather than true net neutrality.

Mark my words. You'll come back here a year from now and say, "Wow you were right." I think we need to regulate monopolies like Comcast, but based upon what I've heard coming from the FCC Chair, he has something else in mind - control of the web. So basically we're trading one evil (comcast) for another (government).

Re:The FCC is useless. (3, Insightful)

Miamicanes (730264) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922903)

> So basically we're trading one evil (comcast) for another (government).

The big difference is, for the most part Comcast's remedies if you subvert them are largely civil in nature -- denying you future service, charging you penalty fees, suing you, or the like. The government can have you thrown in prison.

Of course, some companies and court jurisdictions have been hard at work finding creative ways to criminalize breaches of corporate policy (particularly through abuse of "theft of electricity" rationales), but for the most part there's still a line between things that are criminal vs merely civil. Comcast's mostly on the 'civil' side, but the government is almost exclusively on the 'criminal' side.

Re:The FCC is useless. (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923471)

>>>(particularly through abuse of "theft of electricity" rationales),

That reminds me, now that winter has arrived, I need to get a couple of those one of those "phone line lights" in case the electricity goes off.

Re:The FCC is useless. (1)

Quothz (683368) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923879)

The big difference is, for the most part Comcast's remedies if you subvert them are largely civil in nature -- denying you future service, charging you penalty fees, suing you, or the like. The government can have you thrown in prison.

The FCC can't imprison you. Only Congress (at the Federal level) can pass laws with prison time. FCC rules are administrative, which is more akin to civil than criminal law. At most, the FCC may investigate certain crimes, but those crimes were defined by Congress, and a law enforcement body would have to make the arrest.

That's not to say I think they should be given authority; the last thing we need on the 'net is a gang of holier-than-thou thugs armed with the power to fine and a giant banhammer. These guys have a long history of misdirected moral crusading, corruption, and arrogance, and they should be relegated to maintaining only the technical aspects of communication in America -- and that under close supervision when money is involved.

Imagine... (4, Interesting)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922451)

Read the request for comments, and replace "electronic media" with "community playgrounds". You'll find that most of the comments still apply - they give children educational opportunities but come with a small risk of children being exposed to something inappropriate and run a very small risk of children being targeted by those who would do them harm.

Personally, I have a 7-year-old daughter, and the TV is relegated to the basement where it has no influence over our lives. Despite the fact that I am an acknowledged geek, my daughter is not on the Internet and won't be for a while yet. This has nothing to do with the dangers from strangers, but the negative influence electronic media have on the developing mind, and is based on a request from her school to minimize what they call "screen time".

Having said all that, this is a conscious choice I make for my daughter, because I feel it is in her best interests. I personally feel this is a conscious choice that every American family should make, and I'm a rather vocal proponent of "kill your television" (at least until the kids reach their teens and the major brain development is completed). I am NOT, repeat NOT in favor of giving the US Government the power to dictate this to every family. This should be a decision that every family makes on their own.

As to "protecting the children from inappropriate content", what "inappropriate content" are we protecting them from, exactly? As far as I'm concerned, the most damaging thing you can do to a young mind is fill them with violent conflict, because it takes a lot of time and emotion to process that conflict and understand it, and that's time better spent by the brain developing free play skills and engaging in creative activities. Are we afeared that a couple of titties or a wanker might permanently scar the them for life? That's nothing compared to the impact that commonly-accepted kids programs are already having. So if the FCC is looking to regulate this, they've already approved what is probably the LEAST appropriate content possible. Bus has left the station, folks, and the FCC missed it.

Make your own decisions for your own family. Don't allow the government to do it for you. This one's gotta go down. The government has no place dictating this.

Oh, and for you parents out there, I urge you to please consider "killing your television". Please. As a conscious and informed decision, not as a government mandate.

Re:Imagine... (4, Insightful)

Nursie (632944) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922535)

Wait, so she's not given access to the greatest information resource of our age, nor to even measured amounts of what has become, rightly or wrongly, the central transport medium of western culture?

Good luck with that. I love the idea that depriving kids of something will keep them somehow pure. How's that forbidden fruit angle craving of hers coming along?

Also, as a self confessed geek, I would have though you would have been trying to foster an interest in technology and computers in general. Each to their own, but I can't say I agree with your approach.

Re:Imagine... (1)

Proteus Child (535173) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922735)

Natehoy said that he was keeping his seven-year old daughter offline (i.e., off the Net), not that he was keeping her away from computers entirely. The former does not necessarily imply the latter.

Re:Imagine... (2, Informative)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922743)

The study of what is behind what you call "depriving" is way beyond the scope of a Slashdot post, and probably would be marked as off-topic anyway.

http://www.whywaldorfworks.org/02_W_Education/index.asp [whywaldorfworks.org]

But, as you say "each to their own". My worst nightmare would be having the government force my preferred approach down the throats of every American family.

Just a bet. (1)

Thanshin (1188877) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922627)

As a child's environment is controlled, you can choose to artificially make it whatever you want. For example, you can decide to educate your child in an environment similar to yours, removing all advances in communications beyond what existed when you were two years old.

Or, you could choose to remove all electric equipment. Or central heating. Or current water. It's an experiment bet.

You're betting your child will be better (happier?) if it grows up in an environment similar to what children in the early nineties had.

I'm betting mine will be happier being a member of his own generation, thus growing up with a direct connection to all information, good and bad; exactly as he'll have when he reaches an age when I'm not there to keep the artificial environment around him.

Re:Just a bet. (1)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922789)

She will be exposed to the Internet, and get more exposure to TV, and electronics as she gets older.

It's just that, at seven, her brain is still in a stage of development where exposure to a lot of that sort of stimulation hampers more important aspects of her mental, emotional, and physical development.

Or at least so goes the theory behind her school.

As I posted in another reply, an in-depth discussion of what is behind her school's methodology is way beyond a Slashdot post.

Re:Just a bet. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922961)

It's just that, at seven, her brain is still in a stage of development where exposure to a lot of that sort of stimulation hampers more important aspects of her mental, emotional, and physical development.

When I was 7, I used to read Asimov. Think about it.

Re:Just a bet. (1)

justinlee37 (993373) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923349)

I wholly disagree with the "screen-time" theory being sold by your daughter's school (and I am willing to bet it is being sold by old folks who primarily think of televisions, not computers, when they think of "screens"). Sure, dumbly sitting in front of a screen all day and passively absorbing what flickers across it (like a television) is not very cognitively stimulating or conducive to mental development. However, a computer is very different from a television. It's something you interact with actively. I was born in 1987 and I had access to a computer and the internet as early as the age of 4. I learned to type WAY before it was taught in school, I became very comfortable with troubleshooting computers, and by the time I was 12 I could design and publish a basic website and write small portions of HTML. For the most part the "violent games" on the computer, like Starcraft, helped to develop my cognitive abilities, and being exposed to pornography at a young age was not traumatizing and didn't lead me to irresponsible behavior (my parents, especially my Dad, had a mature attitude about sex and sex education).

Today, I'm a university student, and I've nearly graduated with Bachelor's of Science in Psychology with a minor in Economics. I also enjoy the privilege of being an undergraduate Laurels scholar. If anything, having access to a computer with the internet as a young child helped rather than hampered my development. I know that I came out a lot better than the kids who spent most of their childhood watching television. Do you think that if you wait until your daughter is 10 or 12 to introduce her to the internet and the use of a computer that she will be very comfortable using one as a teenager? Do you think she will even be interested in using it and learning how to do things like make websites? Personally I think you are giving your daughter a severe disadvantage in life by attempting to shelter her from "screen time." Let's face it, the modern world is filled with screens. When I go to school, sometimes we have class in the computer lab. The professor almost always has access to a classroom computer and a video overhead which are connected to a digital projector. When I do homework, I'm doing it on a computer. When I go to work at my school's Distance Learning Center to do video production, or convert projector reel films to DVD format, I use all kinds of screens and computers. When I am at home and I want to blow off steam, I play videogames on my computer or watch movies and sitcoms on websites like hulu.com. Basically, as a responsible adult and college student, almost ALL of my time is spent in front of a screen. It's going to be the same or worse for your daughter, as she comes from a generation even younger than mine. Please, for her sake, don't wait too long to teach her how to use the internet. It is a wonderful learning device and it is going to be a huge part of her life.

Re:Just a bet. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29923867)

No offense, but I doubt anyone's going to listen to someone your age on this topic. Come back when you were born before, say, 1980.

Re:Just a bet. (1)

justinlee37 (993373) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923933)

Well, I am a psychology major. I know a little bit about human development. Besides, if I was born before 1980 then I wouldn't have grown up with the internet and I wouldn't be here to tell you that I turned out just fine despite having unfettered access to it.

Re:Imagine... (1)

DAldredge (2353) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922729)

"espite the fact that I am an acknowledged geek, my daughter is not on the Internet and won't be for a while yet. This has nothing to do with the dangers from strangers, but the negative influence electronic media have on the developing mind, and is based on a request from her school to minimize what they call "screen time"." And here I was thinking that exposing my son to things like Google Earth and science / nature related Internet sites was a good thing.

Re:Imagine... (2, Interesting)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922881)

Not to go all "Clinton" on you, but I should explain (in case you care, which you probably don't) what I mean by "my daughter is not on the Internet".

  - She does get email from grandparents, and with our assistance replies to that email.
  - When she wants to learn about something she's heard about, say a new animal or something, we go together and look it up, and I use that as a launchpad for the kinds of creative play her daughter's school encourages (we look up owls, and she goes and draws some owls, cuts them out, and acts out a puppet show about what she's seen).

  - She does NOT have a Facebook account, or use the computer herself.

Google Earth, and science/nature related Internet sites are good things, even within the framework of an education that looks "troglodyte-based" from the outside. They are the modern equivalent of the most fantastic encyclopedia in history, and if used properly can enrich the educational framework I've chosen to use. TV is much more rarely so.

So you're not keeping her off the internet at all (1)

Nursie (632944) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922969)

You're doing what nearly everyone here would recommend - directing her to useful material and supervising her access to the 'net.

Sounds fine to me!

Re:Imagine... (0, Troll)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923153)

As to "protecting the children from inappropriate content", what "inappropriate content" are we protecting them from, exactly?

That's easy, the answer is any content that puts this President (and his successors), or his policies, in a negative light.

Just say no to FCC censorship (4, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922453)

I don't want my internet to be as dull and uninteresting as broadcast TV (no nudity, no curse words). If you don't like your children seeing such things, change the channel, don't buy cable, install filtering software, don't let the kids use the computer unless you're there, and so on.

Or adopt a more-adult attitude or realizing your kids are going to be having sex someday. Now is as good a time as any to teach them about the birds and bees, and stop having a fit if they see a naked body.

Re:Just say no to FCC censorship (3, Interesting)

rotide (1015173) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922721)

What I don't understand is this American idea that nudity is wrong. No, I'm not a nudist.

I have family in Finland and when I was 16 and stayed at an aunts house, I happened to take notice of a rather peculiar advertisement on TV. A full frontal nude shot of a rather un-pretty man. I don't remember all the details but apparently it was a cell phone commercial.

The fact that I still remember this to this day is shocking in itself. The most basic thing we have as humans is our bodies and our minds. Why is it that we censor our bodies to such an absolute degree?

What, really, is the big deal here?

I agree with you, c64, children should be able to learn about the basic human body and what it is for. There is zero harm in that. Obviously, however, I wouldn't show them hardcore porn, but if there happens to be simple nudity or a discovery program about the birds and the bees, so be it. And if you're against them seeing that sort of thing, limit their exposure to it, but please don't ask the government to decide for _you_ because that would mean they are deciding for _me_ as well. Be a parent and parent your children.

Re:Just say no to FCC censorship (1)

The Grim Reefer2 (1195989) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922853)

I don't want my internet to be as dull and uninteresting as broadcast TV (no nudity, no curse words). If you don't like your children seeing such things, change the channel, don't buy cable, install filtering software, don't let the kids use the computer unless you're there, and so on.

I totally agree with this.

Or adopt a more-adult attitude or realizing your kids are going to be having sex someday. Now is as good a time as any to teach them about the birds and bees,

You've lost me here. We are talking about children, so why would anyone in their right mind "adopt a more-adult attitude"? Let kids be kids. I think it's totally unfair to make them grow up any faster than they already have to.

I think every parent should be able to determine when this needs to be discussed. Personally I don't think that 3 years old is appropriate. Younger kids don't understand the consequences of their actions or have the wisdom of how to use that knowledge. Many adults don't for that matter.

and stop having a fit if they see a naked body.

Again, I agree with you. It is silly to teach children that this is somehow a bad or "unnatural" thing. But it's also quite different from images of consenting adults (or anyone for that matter) having sex.

That being said, I have no objection to how you raise your children as long as you don't object to how I raise mine. Furthermore, I don't feel the gov't has the right to tell people how to raise their children in general. I agree with you and also strongly believe that parents need to take more responsibility for raising their children, after all the government didn't birth them.

Re:Just say no to FCC censorship (3, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922987)

>>>You've lost me here. We are talking about children, so why would anyone in their right mind "adopt a more-adult attitude"? Let kids be kids. I think it's totally unfair to make them grow up any faster than they already have to.
>>>

Because.

When my 8-year-old asked, "Where do babies come from?" I told him the answer straight up - "When a married man and woman are sleeping together in bed, the man puts his penis into her. Then a baby grows inside." He went "ewww" and that was the end of it. He was no more traumatized by that info then he was traumatized about wiping poo off his bottom. And I think your idea that kids should be kept in the dark or lied to ("babies come from the stork") is akin to mental child abuse.

Okay granted YOU didn't say you lie to your kids, but I know a lot of parents who do. Then later the kid gets pregnant or knocks-up a girl at age 13, and they wonder how that happened. Duh. It's because they never TAUGHT the kid how their bodies work, that's why. I don't see any reason to withhold knowledge. Better they learn it from me under my supervision, then on their own or from someone else.

>>>I don't feel the gov't has the right to tell people how to raise their children in general

Agreed.

Re:Just say no to FCC censorship (1)

xerxesVII (707232) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924349)

Then later the kid gets pregnant or knocks-up a girl at age 13, and they wonder how that happened. Duh. It's because they never TAUGHT the kid how their bodies work, that's why. I don't see any reason to withhold knowledge. Better they learn it from me under my supervision, then on their own or from someone else.

But those 13-year-olds weren't a married man and woman. How on earth could they have possibly gotten pregnant?

Re:Just say no to FCC censorship (2, Insightful)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923621)

Younger kids don't understand the consequences of their actions or have the wisdom of how to use that knowledge. Many adults don't for that matter.

Mostly this is a self-fulfilling prophesy. Sure there is some physical limit before which it's not possible for a child to respond to delayed consequences but if parents never expect this behavior from their children then they won't learn it as quickly. The brain is very flexable like that.

Re:Just say no to FCC censorship (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924417)

I believe that the FCC (and the Federal government in general; indeed, most of the world's governments) would like the internet to be like Murray Leinster predicted [baen.com] in 1946.

The link goes to the story itself, a very good sci-fi short story that comes the closest to any story I've seen to predicting the internet, even more than Asimov's "Multivac". But Leinster's story is based on the premise that an uncensored internet would be disasterous.

Agreed (1, Funny)

sleeponthemic (1253494) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922473)

Growing up, I knew several families who restricted their kids from watching The Simpsons. I think those type of standards are sorely lacking thesedays and we should use them as positive examples to reassert control. Now they've got the twitters, these children are beginning to secretly rape themselves.

Re:Agreed (2, Insightful)

Calydor (739835) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922519)

If the children are secretly raping themselves, let's immediately put them in jail for raping children!

Re:Agreed (2, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922689)

In Transylvania...

oops I mean Pennsylvania they sent two teens to jail (for one night) because they took photos of their naked bodies. Oh horror! You can see your teenage body naked while showering or dressing, but use a camera to capture that sight with your cellphone...... and the world will come to an end!!! (So claims the prosecutor.)

It's especially stupid considering the U.S. Supreme Court ruled nudity is not pornography, therefore not a crime. I guess the prosecutor doesn't read SCOTUS decisions.

What happened to parents??? (3, Insightful)

sureshot007 (1406703) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922549)

Why aren't parents being held responsible for censoring their own children? It's the parents the put the computer in their room in the first place. Why should the government have to control what kids have access to?

Re:What happened to parents??? (0, Troll)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922779)

Why should the government have to control what kids have access to?

It's Hope and Change, buddy. Get with the program.

How can this be legal? (4, Insightful)

Zobeid (314469) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922639)

Can somebody explain to me some legal theory under which the FCC -- or the federal government, for that matter -- has any authority to regulate the content of videogames?

I understood the rationale behind regulating broadcasting. If stuff is going out over the public airwaves, then the public -- by proxy of their humble servants in the government -- should have power to oversee its contents, to ensure that broadcasts are of benefit to the general populace.

Videogames, last I checked, were not broadcast over the public airwaves. They are bought and sold as private transactions.

And before anybody says "commerce clause". . . I can see how that would enable the federal government to regulate or tax the sale of games across state lines, regardless of their content. But if they started evaluating the contents and discriminating between games, then that bumps up against the 1st Amendment.

Caveat: I am not a constitutional scholar. (However, some people who apparently *are* constitutional scholars seem to have appalling ignorance of, or disregard for, these issues.)

Re:How can this be legal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922747)

You've forgotten something - most of the current FCC staff were put in place by Bush and Bush appointees. Since when did Shrub give two shits about the Constitution?

Re:How can this be legal? (4, Insightful)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923243)

Except that 3 of the 5 commissioners of the FCC were appointed by Obama, so this Notice of Inquiry was supported by at least one of the commissioners put in place by Obama. Obama has demonstrated even less interest in the Constitution than Bush.

Re:How can this be legal? (3, Informative)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923113)

The only reason the FCC exists is to manage access to the EM sprectrum so that the public can use it without stepping on each other's toes. Expanding their authority beyond that has no legal justification.

Re:How can this be legal? (1)

Sgt. B (926642) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924409)

This particular subject is The Electronic Media Landscape. I understand what you mean but please consider how much 'media' is in a modern video game. If you want, just relate it to the movie and television industry, consider the cut scenes contained in games. These cut scenes are short films and would qualify as a form of electronic media even without considering the rest of the game content. That is my guess.

The FCC are playing catch up. This concern didn't exist when the Media Bureau was created and they still do not cover internet broadcasts. If it's their job to regulate what is being broadcast (over television and Cable at the moment) how are they not responsible for things that can be watched that are broadcast over the internet?
.
Currently, the rating system for video games is handled by the ESRB and not the FCC. It does help to have some remarks on the box to quickly identify the recommended age and content type of the game for those who are not into the subject. But this is by no means a regulation.

Re:How can this be legal? (1)

el_gato_borracho (1218808) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924745)

I have never liked the idea that the US federal government can regulate content of public airwaves. By the same theory, it could regulate speech in newspapers that are delivered on public roads. Oh, but there's that pesky First Amendment that explicitly forbids that. Too bad the founders didn't know about electromagnetic waves.

Unlikely (2, Insightful)

Tobor the Eighth Man (13061) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922647)

It'd be a huge stretch to declare video games and home entertainment systems to be under the umbrella of the FCC, and any kind of censorship or regulation on their part would be a massive expansion of their purpose and powers. I just don't see this happening.

The FCC is one of the most important governmental agencies with regards to technology and culture, yet the FCC doesn't seem to have any clue what it's supposed to be doing. They consistently eliminate or nullify their most valuable powers (ensuring fair and beneficial use of the public airwaves), while trying to grab ridiculous and useless ones to replace them (censorship, this nonsense).

di34 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922737)

volatile world o7 or make 7oud noises

FDR's Thought Police (4, Insightful)

michaelmalak (91262) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922755)

It's been five years since I this piece was written at Mises, and five years since I posted a link to it from Slashdot, but it's still relevant and needs repeating:

FDR's Thought Police: Still Alive, Still Censoring [mises.org] .

How about zero control? (2, Interesting)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#29922783)

The FCC shouldn't fine a network over an inadvertent nipple slip.

Mostly like the (somewhat broken) MPAA, there should merely by ratings and guidelines that enable parents to make decisions for themselves on how to raise their kids.

I don't want my daughter playing Grand Theft Auto. But I certainly don't want anyone telling me how to raise my kid. Voluntary rating systems are the way to go. However, unlike the MPAA, the rules for how the ratings are determined should be transparent.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0493459/ [imdb.com]

Re:How about zero control? (1)

night_flyer (453866) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923091)

If you think it was inadvertent then you are fooling yourself. as for rating, I agree that gives the parents control, but how do you punish someone for breaking the rating system rules?

Re:How about zero control? (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923689)

I believe it was inadvertent in that the network wasn't in on it. There seemed to be some genuine shock. Was it an intentional move by Janet and Justin? Maybe.

Either way, I don't think the FCC should have the right to fine radio stations or TV stations. Let the market decide.

creators urging more control by so-called grownups (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29922925)

the innocents WILL be protected/salvaged.

mynuts won; to be censored post haste.

ass (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29923209)

simple response .. GET FUCKED

How to submit a comment (1)

Rabbitbunny (1202531) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923255)

Standard: for international, attachments, lawyers.
http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs2/proceeding/view.action?name=09-194 [fcc.gov]

Express: for individuals. Note that the proceeding number is 09-194 and it's not in the list.
http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs2/upload/express [fcc.gov]

You can talk about it all day long here, but until you submit a comment it doesn't matter.

Re:How to submit a comment (1)

Rabbitbunny (1202531) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923619)

Also, on this page you can view the current filings which so far include a guy who's made two that are entirely unrelated, posted five times, and make him look like a retard... and a psychologist that tells them to leave it the hell alone.

And the psychologist cites his sources.

http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs2/proceeding/view?name=09-194 [fcc.gov]

Oh no! (1)

fulldecent (598482) | more than 4 years ago | (#29923629)

BREAKING: "FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski included a statement with the NOI in which he noted that 'twenty years ago, parents worried about their children having only a small vocabulary,' while today, word choices are far more widespread for children, which 'have become a prevalent entertainment source in millions of homes and a daily reality for millions of kids.'"

FCC is looking for opinions on how our "evolving language" affects kids, and whether the FCC itself should have more regulatory control over such language. FCC is creating a new language, "newspeak," which will allow parents to rest at ease that their children are not being exposed to language and thought that could corrupt their minds. The full NOI (PDF) is available online.

F*CK THE FCC (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 4 years ago | (#29924725)

Why do they need more power, they already control too much, I find this is just another way for them to go after certain cases and generate more legal revenue. I tend to think that a parent(s) know when their child has too much tv, so telling me they can sue the parents for allowing their kids to watch too much TV (a form of child abuse) is beyond what they should have the ability to do.

The FCC was needed way back when technology was being introduced to households, and most households were ignorant to too many facts and stats needed to make a proper assessment, but now we have multi-media outlets and internet and iphones.
To get the facts, we don't need a governing body to rule us...we can rule ourselves. The kids of today are light years brighter technology wise then yesterday's kids. They know how to use a microwave at the age of 8 (or so) without being stupid (unless the parents were stupid and the transfer is unavoidable). They know how to text and use cell phones at 10, and can carry one in school at 12,13, so that in any instance, they can contact authorities should they need.....yeah today's kids need less codling and more eye opening teachings.

PANIC (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29924763)

I see the usual cohort of libertarian slashdotters is in full freak out mode because of this. But if they bothered to they would see: "The FCC also is asking commenters to "to discuss whether the Commission has the statutory authority to take any proposed actions and whether those actions would be consistent with the First Amendment."" Posting as AC to preserve karma.
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