Home Casting Stones Before the FCC: Google Voice and AT&T

Casting Stones Before the FCC: Google Voice and AT&T

Ever since AT&T filed a letter with the FCC about Google Voice’s refusal to connect to certain areas, the two companies have been in a heated public battle. On the one side, AT&T takes the stance that as a carrier, Google is required to offer open access to all numbers. Nevertheless, in today’s blog rebuttal, Google asserts, “Google Voice is a free web application, one intended to supplement and enhance existing phone lines, not replace them.”

In addition to outlining that it is not a primary telecommunications carrier, Google points out that AT&T has hypocritically lobbied the FCC for permission to block local phone carriers. The reason both organizations want to restrict these groups is because they charge high termination rates and partner with adult hotlines and free conference calling centers to further drive traffic. Google argues that it cannot continue to operate as a free service while paying these rates.

Meanwhile, AT&T asserts that while it prefers existing internet principles and does not want radical expansions under the FCC, if the Commission does choose to further regulate, “It absolutely must ensure that any such rules apply evenly – not just to network operators but also to providers of Internet applications, content and services. Anything less would be ineffective, legally suspect and, in all events, a direct repudiation of President Obama’s call for a ‘level playing field’.”

In your opinion should Google Voice be subject to the same rules that apply to AT&T or do you believe that web-based telephony groups like Skype, Google and Jajah should fall under a separate set of regulations?

Photo Credit: Aislinn Ritchie

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

Get the biggest tech headlines of the day delivered to your inbox

    By signing up, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy. Unsubscribe anytime.

    Tech News

    Explore the latest in tech with our Tech News. We cut through the noise for concise, relevant updates, keeping you informed about the rapidly evolving tech landscape with curated content that separates signal from noise.

    In-Depth Tech Stories

    Explore tech impact in In-Depth Stories. Narrative data journalism offers comprehensive analyses, revealing stories behind data. Understand industry trends for a deeper perspective on tech's intricate relationships with society.

    Expert Reviews

    Empower decisions with Expert Reviews, merging industry expertise and insightful analysis. Delve into tech intricacies, get the best deals, and stay ahead with our trustworthy guide to navigating the ever-changing tech market.