Noam at FCC: OTT Will Be Concentrated, Regulated

Columbia Professor Eli Noam suggests that the Apples and Amazons of the world should expect their cloud-based video distribution systems to be regulated as are traditional video networks now.

That came in the first of two FCC workshops on access to video distribution platforms held Monday.

Noam, professor of finance and economics, said that for the purposes of market power, the power of the cloud, interoperability and interconnection will be serious issues.

He said that regulation will not likely be on the content or application level, but instead at the structural and network level.

As media moves to the Internet, he said telecom regulation will not be shrinking or withering away, but instead it will be more important because "so many things will be moving over the Internet, and the Internet, in turn, will be governed by some of those traditional regulatory principles" that now govern regulation of traditional broadband networks.

He said that companies like Apple and Amazon will be the new dominant players in video and that it will be a concentrated market. He said that people who think OTT will be a space where everybody can be there "will be sorely disappointed."

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.