Addition: After a great deal of digging I discovered two things about the contested quote. One, not to toot my own horn but I was clearly right on this being misquoted. Two, he made these statements at CES in a Q&A session with Gary Shapiro not at TelecomNEXT as originally stated in every other source. Check out the video for yourself on Yahoo, the comments are about one-third of the way in.
I also just added a chopped version of the video in Xvid format for those who don’t want to scroll through and download a 200mb video, its 19mb. Get it here. or as a Torrent Here Excuse the crummy conversion, I’m no video editing professional.
Well, the big debate online for the day has been a blogger who quoted the FCC chairmen Kevin Martin as saying he favors a tiered internet. In other words saying he favors backbone providers using traffic prioritization based on the “priority fee” that companies wish to charge companies like google. This quote was taken completely out of context however, and as it turns out is clearly incorrect.
If this blogger had bothered to actually read the entire speech he would have realized that Mr. Martin had used the word levels to refer to tiered internet speeds for broadband. In other words he was saying he supports providers that that wish to offer multiple speeds of internet to their users, say 7mbit vs 5mbit DSL or Cable. Allow me to paste the entire section of the speech here:
However, Martin also added that he supports network operators’ desires to offer different levels of broadband service at different speeds, and at different pricing — a so-called “tiered” Internet service structure that opponents say could give a market advantage to deep-pocket companies who can afford to pay service providers for preferential treatment.While Martin said that consumers who don’t pay for higher levels of Internet service shouldn’t expect to get higher levels of performance, he did say in a following press conference that “the commission needs to make sure” that there are fair-trade ways to ensure that consumers “get what they are purchasing.”
Note how he never even used the word tiered to describe broadband speeds. The reporter added tiered on in a comment and then never even properly enclosed Mr. Martins’ words in quotes to clearly differentiate between them. I think its fairly obvious that what he meant when I strike out the reporters comments and just leave his.