back to article FCC preps puritanical broadband

It's official. FCC boss Kevin Martin wants a free US-wide wireless broadband network. And he wants it equipped with "family-friendly" content filters. On Friday, as expected, the US Federal Communications Commission formally unveiled (PDF) a free wireless plan for a portion of the American airwaves known as the Advanced …


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  1. Pyros

    Puritanical? Bah!

    They just don't want anyone else to access their porn sessions over the free wi-fi.

  2. Lance


    Too bad George Carlin has apssed away. Then he could make a clip that couldn't be shown on the "free Internet" and be named; the seven dirty words that can't be watched on the "Free Internet." The FCC needs to let go. When they made the rules there were a few stations; so people were limited. Now with the multitudes of media sources, if you don't like something, you have plenty of other choices.

  3. Jay

    Oh, that's a challenge to subvert...

    An ssh tunnel or a VPN solution later, and you can get all the naughtiness you can stand...

  4. Steven Raith
    Paris Hilton

    If it doesn't have pr0n and offensive content...

    ...then it's not The InterTard as far as I am concerned.

    Still, regardless of the ethics of censorship and all that toss, it might give the traditional wireless carriers a kick up the jacksy and open up the market for similar services over on this side of the pond. If I had access to a wide-scale fat pipe over my phone, I might bother my arse using the POP3 client on it, for example.

    [probably not though - large, slightly pink jpegs don't display well on my handset]

    Of course, the other side of the coin is how restricted would it be - for example, would VOIP apps be allowed to run through it? That would *really* give the mobile companies a [well deserved] fright.

    Steven R

    Paris: she'd be banned on it.

  5. Chris


    I hate the FCC. Bunch of church loving nutjobs. Porn aside, how long till things like.. googling for chemistry related stuff (Terrorits?) isn't family friendly? Or visiting the EEEEVVVIIIIL libertarian websites?

  6. Kevin Kitts
    Dead Vulture

    Welcome to PAX!

    Your Public Access Network for the new millenium. We aim to provide nationwide networking at reasonable speeds for reasonable purposes. We will make computing safe for democracy, as well as safe for your children. You will be able to conduct all your business on this network for free (never mind the spybots - you don't have anything to hide, do you? Of course not). If you want porn, movies, radical ideas or free speech, you can pay for the privilege, but if you want unlimited censored internet for free, we have exactly what you need.

    I wonder what William Gibson thinks of this idea - it was his idea, published over 20 years ago in his book Neuromancer. As for myself, the FCC head should be jailed for gross stupidity. George Carlin should haunt this bastard for the rest of his life (and Carlin would *really* enjoy it, I'd bet).

    Dead bird, because the FCC head waited until Carlin died before proposing this. Chickenshit bastard.

  7. Franz Gruber

    Censorship tells it all.

    The FCC, like the FDA, is an agency that desperately needs an overhaul. In fact, both have pervaded our lives so long and are so ingrown, that they simply need to be torn down and started over fresh. This is not to say we don't need something like them. It's just that each has so far overreached itself it is beyond fixing.

  8. Graham Wood


    Since ssh only exists to allow paedophiles & terrorists to get past the police - obviously they would need to be blocked to keep it safe for all god's little children.

    VPNs & SSL also prevent the government from making sure that you're not doing something you shouldn't - so that'll be banned too.

    In fact, the only way to make it safe would be to make it http/html ONLY - since that way nothing is encrypted. This also makes it so much easier to add adverts.....

    So you have the government wanting people not to have any secrets ('cos you can trust all governments so why have secrets?) and the companies wanting to server adverts - with that much impetus, the limits will happen.

    Stalin would have been proud.

  9. Lukin Brewer

    Censorship, plus...

    All internet activity will be monitored.

    Nobody will be able to Googlewhack the President.

    No P2P.

    Strange that the US can consider free broadband but not free healthcare.

  10. Martin Usher

    Soon....with any luck

    One of the characteristics of the current Administration has been placing ideologically verified people in key positions in Federal agencies -- they're not selected for technical competence, but for ideological purity. So you get this kind of BS. BTW -- Its not just the FCC that's infected, its all over.

    Hopefully with the change of Administration there will be a return to a more normal situation. (I like family-friendly stuff myself but its not exactly difficult to select what I want from the pile. This isn't about protecting anyone, its just agendas, payback and all sorts of other weirdness.)

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