I received an announcement today about “Broadband Policy Summit VI: Implementing the National Plan”. This event is cosponsored by two commercial organizations, BNA and Pike & Fischer, in association with the FCBA. The speakers include
· Meredith Attwell Baker, Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission
· Lawrence E. Strickling, Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information, and Administrator, National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), U.S. Department of Commerce
· Ambassador Philip L. Verveer, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State and U.S. Coordinator for International Communications and Information Policy, U.S. Department of State
· Edward P. Lazarus, Chief of Staff, Federal Communications Commission
The registration cost is clearly stated at $1149, although the sponsors kindly allow a “government and academic” rate of only $575 and a student rate of a mere $129. Thanks FCBA for your support of education and academia.
I do not fault these distinguish government officials from wanting to speak to such an august audience, but in the interest of transparency what do the rest of us do? So here is a humble suggestion: FCC should adopt an internal policy that its officials will not speak at events charging more than a certain amount, say $100, UNLESS the sponsors provide a video of the official’s remarks – including questions and answers – within 24 hours after the event for posting at the FCC web site.
This will guarantee that the public gets the same information as the high rollers. I hope the other two members of the “troika”, NTIA and DOS/CIP adopt a similar policy.