FCC chairman's dinner RT LOL!
That’s Post Tech’s take on Federal Communications Chairman Julius Genachowski, who employed some Web 2.0 skills at a telecom bar association dinner last night to bring humor to the barrage of issues facing the agency.
Genachowski talked about some of those issues – a goal to bring broadband to all U.S. homes, wireless service practices and net neutrality. But in a long tradition at what has become known as the annual Telecom Prom, Genachowski took on some of the most controversial issues before the commission with humor (yes, humor of the geek variety).
“Any Comcast-NBC joke must be subject to must-carry,” he said, referring to the media merger that will go before the agency. Must-carry rules require cable companies to carry broadcast content.
And in reference to the much-criticized increase in Verizon Wireless’ early contract cancellation fees, Genachowski said: “Any Verizon employee leaving dinner early must pay a $350 fee.”
And Genachowski launched into a speech about broadband deployment and other issues with a fake Twitter feed scrolling on a screen behind him. Through the tweets, he roasted telecom policy powerbrokers Jim Cicconi of AT&T; Kyle McSlarrow of the National Cable and Telecommunications Association and Gordon Smith, head of the National Association of Broadcasters. Genachowski spoofed on tech reporters, including Post Tech and The Wall Street Journal's Amy Schatz.
"An open Internet creates jobs and spurs economic growth," Genachowski said.
Fake AT&T tweet:
Jim_Cicconi: You Lie!
"As everyone knows, we've been working around the clock to develop a national broadband plan," Genachowski said.
Ben_Scott:Has anyone else else noticed the wait staff has priortized service to Comcast?" Scott is head of policy at public interest group Free Press.Brian_Roberts: C'mon, that's just reasonable dinner management.Roberts is CEO of Comcast.
Most of the jokes were for insiders, and close to tradition, Genachowski’s speech was likely a group-writing effort that included his staff. Indeed, Kevin Martin's speeches to the Federal Communications Bar Association when he was FCC chairman were rumored to have been written by Blair Levin, now head of Genachowski’s broadband planning program.
The "Telecom Prom" wasn’t set to the soundtrack of Alphaville or Air Supply. But it could have been summed up by one attendee tweeting the event for real:
RT @mauracorbett: People actually laughing at FCC dinner. Cats and dogs living together!
December 11, 2009; 8:00 AM ET
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