FCC chairman Julius Genachowski has come out in support of cable companies’ plan to charge customers for Internet access based on how much they use it. In statements yesterday at the cable industry’s NCTA show, Genachowski said that this pricing model would be more efficient and fair to users and encourage competition. The pricing model is one that cable providers have been exploring but have not yet implemented it.
Genachowski’s remarks were met with dismay among some consumer groups.
"Broadband providers should be free to try different pricing strategies," said Free Press Policy Director Matt Wood. "But the FCC's apparent endorsement of these plans only makes sense in a world with real broadband competition. Unfortunately, the wireline broadband market is at best a duopoly and is trending toward a cable monopoly."
The idea of cable companies only charging you for what you need would be intriguing if the cable industry could apply it to channels. Hello, Comedy Central, goodbye, Home Shopping Network.