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Denver, CO (October 15, 2012): Today, the Broadband Internet Technical Advisory Group (BITAG) announced that Dale Hatfield, BITAG’s founding Executive Director, is stepping down from his position. He will continue to work with BITAG in an advisory capacity. BITAG also announced the appointment of Professor Douglas Sicker as its new Executive Director and Chair of the Technical Working Group.
Under Hatfield, an Adjunct Professor in the Interdisciplinary Telecommunications Program at the University of Colorado at Boulder and former Chief Technologist of the Federal Communications Commission, BITAG began operations and has issued three separate reports on various technical topics that affect Internet network management. Hatfield said, “I am extremely pleased with the progress that we have made in creating a great multi-stakeholder organization that I think can serve as a model for further developments in Internet governance. I cannot think of anyone better than Doug Sicker to lead BITAG into the future.”
Sicker has held various positions in academia, industry and government. In addition to his roles at BITAG, Sicker will continue as an endowed professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Colorado at Boulder with a joint appointment in the Interdisciplinary Telecommunications Program. From 2009 to August 2012, Sicker served in a series of government positions. Most recently, Sicker was the Chief Technology Officer and Senior Advisor for Spectrum at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). Sicker also served as the Chief Technology Officer of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and prior to this served as a senior advisor on the FCC National Broadband Plan. He has also served as Director of Global Architecture at Level 3 Communications and Chief of the Network Technology Division at the FCC. Doug was involved in the early efforts to establish BITAG and its Technical Working Group TWG. Sicker said, “Building upon what Dale has helped to create, I am confident in BITAG’s ability to take on increasingly challenging technical issues and I am looking forward to working with the members of the Technical Working Group to do so.”
Gigi B. Sohn, BITAG Board Chair and President and CEO of Public Knowledge, said, “BITAG is indebted to Dale for his service and efforts in building and leading the BITAG for the past 3 years. In Doug Sicker the Board has found a leader with the professional background, personal integrity, and technical expertise to take on the most challenging technical issues related to network management.”
Questions should be directed to BITAG’s Deputy Director, Kaleb Sieh, at 303-720-7351 or email@example.com.
About BITAG. BITAG is a non-profit, multi-stakeholder organization focused on bringing together engineers and technologists in a Technical Working Group (TWG) to develop consensus on broadband network management practices and other related technical issues that can affect users’ Internet experience, including the impact to and from applications, content and devices that utilize the Internet.
BITAG’s mission includes: (a) educating policymakers on such technical issues; (b) addressing specific technical matters in an effort to minimize related policy disputes; and (c) serving as a sounding board for new ideas and network management practices. Specific TWG functions also may include: (i) identifying “best practices” by broadband providers and other entities; (ii) interpreting and applying “safe harbor” practices; (iii) otherwise providing technical guidance to industry and to the public; and/or (iv) issuing advisory opinions on the technical issues germane to the TWG’s mission that may underlie disputes concerning broadband network management practices.
BITAG TWG reports focus primarily on technical issues. While the reports may touch on a broad range of questions associated with a particular network management practice, the reports are not intended to address or analyze in a comprehensive fashion the economic, legal, regulatory or public policy issues that the practice may raise.
About BITAG’s Technical Review Process. BITAG’s core substantive work is performed through its TWG, which was formed with the core principles of being: technically driven, balanced, open, efficient, independent, and flexible. The TWG reviews technical issues brought to it through Review Requests submitted by both Members and non-Members, or through a majority weighted vote of the TWG engineers themselves. Each individual Review is taken up by a Committee of the TWG that is composed of engineers and other technical experts representing a broad cross section of the Internet ecosystem. TWG Committees generally operate on a consensus basis, with backstop weighted voting procedures so that when consensus cannot be achieved, each Member category has an equal say in the work product regardless of the composition of the Committee. Finally, BITAG was structured to work as expeditiously as possible, with each Committee operating under a 120-day “shot clock” to complete the respective Review and attendant technical report.