FCC Celebrates 25th Anniversary of Telecommunications Act

(Image credit: FCC)

WASHINGTON—Today, Feb. 8, marks the 25th anniversary of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 being passed. Acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel shared her thoughts on what has been called a landmark piece of legislation.

“Without the Telecommunications Act of 1996, today’s information and communications landscape would look entirely different,” said Rosenworcel. “Coming at the dawn of the internet age, the Act accelerated the transition from the analog era to the digital age while also reaffirming the promise at the heart of FCC’s founding statute: that advanced communications should be available to all Americans. … While we have come a long way, we still have much more work to do to fully realize the promise of the Act and see connectivity for all Americans.”

As part of the celebration of the Telecom Act’s silver anniversary, the FCC has hosted a video with telecommunications policy leaders and their views on the Act. In addition to Rosenworcel, the video features Rep. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee; Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.); Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.); Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.); former FCC Chairman Reed Hundt; former Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information and NTIA Administrator Larry Irving; former FCC Commissioner Susan Ness; former FCC Commissioner Gloria Tristani; and former FCC Commissioner Rachelle Chong.

The video is available to watch online.

In addition, Rosenworcel took part in a Twitter chat with Rep. Jahana Hayes (D-Conn.), where they discussed the significance of the Telecom Act and how it can still be modernized and built upon. The chat can be found on Twitter via #TelecomActChat.