The Political Dynamics of Legislative Reform: Potential Drivers of the Next Communications Statute

44 Pages Posted: 6 Apr 2022

See all articles by Christopher S. Yoo

Christopher S. Yoo

University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School; University of Pennsylvania - Annenberg School for Communication; University of Pennsylvania - School of Engineering and Applied Science

Tiffany Keung

University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School

Date Written: March 29, 2022

Abstract

Although most studies of major communications reform legislation focus on the merits of their substantive provisions, analyzing the political dynamics that led to the enactment of such legislation can yield important insights. An examination of the tradeoffs that led the major industry segments to support the Telecommunications Act of 1996 provides a useful illustration of the political bargain that it embodies. Application of a similar analysis to the current context identifies seven components that could form the basis for the next communications statute: universal service, pole attachments, privacy, intermediary immunity, net neutrality, spectrum policy, and antitrust reform. Determining how these components might fit together requires an assessment of areas in which industry interests overlap and diverge as well as aspects of the political environment that can make passage of reform legislation more difficult.

Keywords: Telecommunications law & policy, legislation, congressional politics, technological change, cellular telephony, 5G broadband, digital platforms, social media, competition

JEL Classification: K23, K24, L86, L96

Suggested Citation

Yoo, Christopher S. and Keung, Tiffany, The Political Dynamics of Legislative Reform: Potential Drivers of the Next Communications Statute (March 29, 2022). Berkeley Technology Law Journal, Forthcoming, U of Penn Law School, Public Law Research Paper No. 22-26, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4076329

Christopher S. Yoo (Contact Author)

University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School ( email )

3501 Sansom St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6204
United States
(215) 746-8772 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.upenn.edu/faculty/csyoo/

University of Pennsylvania - Annenberg School for Communication ( email )

3620 Walnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6220
United States
(215) 746-8772 (Phone)

University of Pennsylvania - School of Engineering and Applied Science ( email )

3330 Walnut St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6309
United States
(215) 746-8772 (Phone)

Tiffany Keung

University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School ( email )

3501 Sansom Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States

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