The FCC recently ruled in cable’s favor for interconnection among rural carriers. The ruling stems from cases in South Carolina and Nebraska, where rural carriers were reportedly denying interconnection with Time Warner cable and others, through third parties, including Verizon and Sprint. The rural carriers argued that even though Sprint and Verizon were requesting interconnection, they were doing so as wholesale providers for cable VoIP service, which is classified as an information service, and thus not eligible for interconnection. The FCC sees this differently, and has ruled that interconnection must proceed.

If nothing else, this case reveals the true nature of telecom’s competitive environment. You have large telecom carriers empowering competition between smaller rural carriers and cable VoIP carriers – cable VoIP carriers that they may already compete with themselves (or will some day). Maybe this is “coopetition” at its best, but I’m sure it’s frustrating to some.

Read USA Today’s article on this development …

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