October 09, 2009

The Saga Continues! Google Voice -- AT&T -- and Some Fun with Pure Hypocrisy!

Greetings. In the continuing saga of AT&T vs. Google Voice, now comes word that the FCC has sent a letter to Google asking for more information about Google Voice and Google's reportedly quite reasonable blocking of rural interexchange compensation scams.

As I noted a couple of days ago in Some Questions Answered Regarding Google Voice and WSJ on Net Neutrality, Google's position on this matter seems entirely justifiable, especially given the total insanity of the current rural interexchange compensation mess.

But there's another aspect to the story that I personally find highly amusing.

Ya' see, many or most of the lawmakers now pushing the FCC to investigate Google Voice have reportedly benefited quite nicely from AT&T and other Big Telecom campaign donations in the past. And, gee, oddly enough, it's many of the same rural lawmakers whose constituents have "cashed in" very nicely indeed from the rurally-based sex lines and other similar call termination compensation shakedowns.

Yet it gets even better. It turns out that at the same time as AT&T is trying to assert that Google Voice -- a non-common carrier service -- must meet the same call termination requirements as common carrier services, it turns out that AT&T has been refusing to pay its own bills owed to rural carriers!

Two South Dakota telephone carriers recently sent a letter to the FCC accusing AT&T -- who clearly under current law is required to pay those fees -- of outright hypocrisy in this matter:

"AT&T is engaging in very similar conduct to 'reduce its access expenses' by simply refusing to pay its bills," Buntrock wrote. 'Indeed, if one were to replace 'Google' with 'AT&T,' and call blocking' with 'no pay' in AT&T's [letter to the FCC], Northern Valley and Sancom would have little to add to describe AT&T's unlawful campaign.'"

Ah Ma Bell, the more things change, the more they stay the same!

Stay tuned! Don't touch that telephone dial! More to come ...


Posted by Lauren at October 9, 2009 09:28 PM | Permalink
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