Posts tagged ‘FCC’

AT&T points to Obama’s net neutrality remarks as cause to pause fiber buildout

November 15, 2014 7:07 am


  AT&T has put a temporary pause on its fiber buildout saying that the uncertain nature of the net neutrality debate, in light of President Obama’s statements about...

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October 1, 2014 10:52 am


For most people, September 15th was a day much like any other. But for Internet-based content providers — including Ustream — it was an important milestone in a story that will shape the future of the Internet. On September 15, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) officially closed the public comment period on its latest proposal … Continue reading ?

Broadcast-class player features now available in the standard Ooyala Flash player

September 24, 2014 12:05 pm


Ooyala has recently introduced several broadcast-grade features now available in the standard Ooyala Flash player, including TV Ratings, Closed Captions, and cue point ad markers. For the first time, broadcasters can deploy a standard Ooyala player with these functionalities with minimal configuration.

  • TV Ratings — the Ooyala Flash Player is now compliant with FCC for displaying TV Ratings for broadcast content by displaying a watermark on suggested audience type for each video asset, allowing end users to make informed viewing decisions based on nature of content. TV ratings are assigned at the asset level via custom metadata in Backlot and player embedded parameters. The TV rating watermark appears when the video starts playing and will appear again when the video resumes after ad playback.

  • Closed Captions — as previously reported, Ooyala players are now FCC 708-compliant, which permits viewers to modify the look and feel of closed captions. Ooyala has enabled this capability in its Flash player, as well as the iOS HTML5 player and iOS and Android SDKs.

  • Ad Markers (Cue Points) — the Ooyala Flash Player now supports visual markers (cue points) to depict ad or segment breaks to help users identify ads in the player controller bar. The player intelligently hides cue points where the ad has already finished playing and will gracefully handle playback of ads when a user seeks forwards/backwards. This functionality is currently enabled for Freewheel Ad Modules, and will be enabled for other ad providers in the future.

  • Hiding/showing Player Controls — Ooyala Flash player now allows users to enable/disable the controller bar during ad play out, preventing overlap of ad elements such as the Skip and Learn More buttons with the player controls. The Google IMA Flash controls also enable the player controls to be hidden.

Updates to standard Ooyala players such as these enable providers to leverage the core player and its frequent updates rather than create bespoke solutions which require maintenance. In turn, providers can now rely on Ooyala to address broadcast compliance rules and better advertising support in standard Audience and Revenue Builder solutions. If you have a provider interested in these capabilities, encourage them to try out the core Ooyala players today.

For more on these releases, refer to the release notes here. Have questions? Feel free to contact Shilpa Murthy.

Advocates Urge FCC To Block AT&T’s Merger With DirecTV

September 17, 2014 5:15 pm


Advocacy group Public Knowledge is warning the Federal Communications Commission that AT&T’s proposed $49 billion merger with DirecTV would give the company a big incentive to block competition from
online video providers. The organization is calling on the FCC to block the merger. The group adds that if the deal isn’t nixed, the FCC should at least impose a host of conditions on AT&T —
including that it follow open Internet principles.

Net neutrality topples ‘Nipplegate’ as the FCC’s hottest issue of all time

September 10, 2014 4:19 pm

John Oliver talks net neutrality on Last Week Tonight

Apparently, the only thing that gets Americans incensed more than kinda-sorta nudity is the danger of slow lanes on the internet. The FCC has confirmed that its most recent net neutrality rules have received more comments (1,477,301, to be exact) than any other issue in the agency’s history, beating even the 1.4 million that followed Janet Jackson’s “Nipplegate” exposure at the 2004 Super Bowl. And that’s before comments close next Monday, so the figure is only likely to get higher.

Filed under: Internet


Via: The Guardian

Source: Gigi Sohn (Twitter)

Join Vimeo in supporting net neutrality

September 10, 2014 4:00 am


In July, we asked you to help us protect an open Internet. Today, we’re joining forces with our digital brethren including Etsy, Reddit, and Kickstarter, to once again ask that you help us fight the FCC’s proposed rule — one that would bring an end to the net neutrality we know and love.

This time, we’re asking you to call your Senators and tell them you’re against the FCC’s proposal. We’ve made it easy to do — enter your phone number and we’ll give you a call and share some talking points about the proposal. Then, you’ll be automatically connected to your Senator to say you want net neutrality. This will only take a few minutes, and will go a long way toward saving our open Internet.

To refresh your memory:
The FCC proposal would allow broadband providers to charge online companies like Vimeo to deliver traffic (like video uploads and plays) to their customers in a timely manner. We think this will create a two-tiered Internet — fast tubes for those who can afford to pay a hefty toll and slow tubes for everyone else — and will ultimately harm innovation and creative expression. As a result, we’re calling on the FCC to demand “net neutrality” — rules that prevent broadband providers from discriminating against content that runs through their pipes.

Independent creators and their audiences would also suffer from this two-tiered Internet world. If you, like us, want to keep a free and open Internet, please click the button above and let your voice be heard.

Will Wheeler’s challenge be enough to up operators’ broadband game?

September 4, 2014 1:28 pm

FCC chief challenges providers to push more speed

Seems I’m not the only one pining for 1 Gbps Internet; turns out someone with a little more clout, FCC boss Tom Wheeler, feels the same way.

Wheeler, speaking at 1776, a startup incubator in Washington, D.C., said “meaningful competition for high-speed wired broadband is lacking and Americans need more competitive choices for faster and better Internet connections, both to take advantage of today’s new services, and to incentivize the development of tomorrow’s innovations.”

The FCC’s has defined broadband as 4 Mbps downstream and 1 Mbps up.

But, with 60% of peak-period Internet activity consisting of bandwidth-intensive content, like video, it’s begun to change its tune.

And that, obviously, is a good thing.

Assuming an HD movie requires 5 Mbps and super HD requires 7 Mbps, it’s easy to see that most American homes – many of which have six connected devices or more – easily need a connection with 25 Mbps or more speed, something 20% of Americans currently don’t have access to, NTIA data shows, and something Wheeler believes should be “table stakes in 21st-century communications.”

In fact, nearly 10% don’t have access to 10 Mbps Internet.

Much of the problem, Wheeler said, is that “users cannot respond by easily switching providers.”

“As a result, even though there may be competition, the marketplace may not be offering consumers competitive opportunities to change providers, especially once they’ve signed up with a provider in the first place,” Wheeler said.

Back to the Giga-speed.

The FCC points out that Kansas saw a “97% surge in speeds to 34.4 Mbps after Google announced its fiber deployment in Kansas City;” it was the biggest year-over-year jump in bandwidth of any state in the U.S. When Google announced plans to deploy in Austin, TWC trotted out a 300 Mbps offering (the top Tier had been 50 Mbps), and AT&T joined the 1 Gbps show (they offer it now for $70 a month). As Cox and CenturyLink have begun to turn up speeds in their footprints – Cox promises 1 Gbps speeds across its entire footprint within a year or so – competitors have responded.

“A year ago, Cox Cable said it wouldn’t be upgrading to gigabit networks because it would cost billions. Now it says it will, starting with communities where Google and CenturyLink are deploying fiber.”

Wheeler, meanwhile, wants that competition to heat up even more.

He’s put together a four-point policy framework to help goose providers into adding more speed to American’s Broadband:

  1. Where competition exists, the Commission will protect it.
  2. Where greater competition can exist, we will encourage it.
  3. Where meaningful competition is not available, the Commission will work to create it.
  4. Where competition cannot be expected to exist, we must shoulder the responsibility of promoting the deployment of broadband for the sake of consumers and innovators.

SNL Kagan has an interesting study of 1 Gig deployments and planned deployments.

You know who’s ahead? In a big way? It’s not cable operators… it’s telcos… and, of course, Google.

Telcos have 1 Gbps offerings up in 14 major markets, and have announced plans for 20-plus more.

AT&T GigaPower is up in Austin, Dallas and Fort Worth; CenturyLink is deployed in 11, including Phoenix, Seattle-Tacoma, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Denver, Portland, Ore., Salt Lake City, Las Vegas and Omaha. AT&T has announced plans for San Jose, Houston and San Antonio, Texas, Miami and Jacksonville, Fla., Raleigh-Durham, Charlotte, Greensboro and Winston-Salem, N.C., Nashville and Kansas City.

Google Fiber, of course, has launched in Kansas City and in Provo, Utah, and has begun deploying in Austin. It has plans for, perhaps, dozens of additional deployments.

Even Cincinnati Bell has announced a deployment in the Cincinnati metro area.

Verizon, meanwhile, has kicked up its top offering to 500 Mbps, and with no significant competition in its threat in its footprint of a 1 Gbps service, it’s likely to stay there awhile.

On the cable side, well, far fewer announcements – and no deployments – of residential 1 Gbps service so far.

Cox says it’ll have 1 Gbps soon in Phoenix, Las Vegas and Omaha and promises to be across its footprint in 2016; Time Warner Cable is promising 1 Gbps service in Los Angeles, Suddenlink plans to offer 1 Gbps service across its footprint by 2016 and Comcast has a limited 505 Mbps offering.

How long will it really take to get 1 Gbps service to a majority of Americans?

I’m with you, Tom; I think it will be far too long. It’s time to turn up the heat.

Follow me on Twitter @JimONeillMedia

Verizon response to FCC’s throttling concerns: everyone’s doing it

August 4, 2014 8:27 pm


Verizon Wireless has officially responded to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler and his data throttling concerns. The Verge has obtained a copy of the carrier’s response, which was written by Kathleen Grillo, the company’s SVP of Federal Regulatory Affairs. In it, Verizon underlines the notion that customers will only experience slowdowns “under very limited circumstances.” It will only happen at “particular cell sites experiencing unusually high demand,” the letter reads. We’ve outlined the other factors that could result in reduced data speeds previously.

Verizon notes that any throttling will cease immediately when demand on a strained cell site returns to normal. “Our practice is a measured and fair step to ensure that this small group of…