All we can say is "wow" at this point. The Genachowski-led FCC has been relentless in its effort to disrupt the status quo. In office for six months, Genachowski and team are drafting a national broadband plan; working on net neutrality rules; fingering companies like Google, Apple, and Verizon; dealing with spectrum reallocation; handling the nuts-and-bolts of white space device deployment; threatening to extend neutrality rules to wireless networks; and considering the transition from traditional circuit-switched phone networks to a full-IP communications network. Now, we can add "shaking up the cable industry" to the list.
Looking at the topics taken up so far, each is big-picture, disruptive, and pro-network openness. None are particularly radical; indeed, each idea simply develops programs and policies decided on by earlier FCC administrations, some of them Republican. Network neutrality builds on the Internet policy statement, open access rules on wireless follow from the open access rules on the 700MHz spectrum auction, and the new TV initiative builds on the decade-old CableCARD push. The National Broadband Plan, which is new, was mandated by Congress.
So Genachowski doesn't seem to be a radical, but he does appear to be both relentless and ambitious in his quest to see these ideas carried through to their maximum potential for disruptive innovation. And he's not above irritating just about every major incumbent with a network to do it.
great report by Ars Technica on what's happened with CableCARD specifically but also the FCC's approach generally. go disruption!