Timothy M. Denton

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Watching the A-team

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You know when you are a telecom junkie when the essential services proceedings fascinate you.

It may seem contradictory to my stated positions to say the following. I will do so anyway.

The Bell position was admirably well stated yesterday.

It is a question of tone. The tone control of Bell yesterday was superb.

They seem to have learned to approach the issues as if there could be rational doubt as to their positions.

Bell seems to have found a tone with which to approach issues that must be matters of intense concern for them. That is:  to present matters as if there was a reasonable burden of proof that their economic interests are consistently aligned with good public policy.

This approach leaves to the regulator the freedom to agree or disagree. As a former regulator, the freedom to disagree,  and not be thought by the regulated entity to be a fool, or deeply misguided, leaves one more sympathetic to the position one may have to disagree with, and to the party making the argument. Sympathy by the regulated party with the position of the regulator, as having a real choice before him, is the most sympathy-engendering approach one can make. The regulator will be more anxious to do right if he is persuaded that the party against whom he is ruling has some justice in his cause.

If you are a regulated entity, that is precisely the type of anxiety you wish to evoke.

 

 

 

 

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Timothy Denton is a lawyer by training who practices principally in telecommunications and Internet policy and domain name issues, with a strong concentration on explaining what the technology is and what it means.

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Guest Tuesday, 19 November 2019
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