Genachowski Meets With CEOs To Discuss Broadband

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski met with some heavy hitters including GE CEO Jeffrey Immelt this week to talk about the national broadband plan and how it can benefit critical economic sectors like healthcare, energy and education.

That is according to a blog posting by Anoop Gupta, VP of technology policy and strategy, for Microsoft, whose boss, Steve Balmer, was also part of the videoconference conversation.

Also joining the group was Cisco CEO John Chambers and UnitedHealth Group CEO Stephen Hemsley, according to the blog.

According to Gupta, Balmer said that productivity, not debt, must fuel the economy of the future, and that a broadband-connected ecosystem would drive innovation and productivity, a point Genachowski made in his first video blog posting Thursday.

Gupta argues in the posting that the U.S. broadband priority should be getting to anchor institutions like schools, libraries and healthcare facilities, and from there drive adoption deeper into communities, including through technical assistance and a demonstration of the benefits of broadband.

The importance of anchor institutions was echoed by some Demoracratic legislators Thursday at a House Communications Subcommittee oversight hearing on the government's broadband stimulus package, of which the FCC national broadband plan mandate is a part.

FCC spokespeople were not available to comment on the meeting.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.