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The Telecommunications Act of 1996 was the first major rewrite of the Telecommunications Act of 1934 Before the new act the nation had seen the birth of television both black and color the increase of network cable and satellite broadcasting advances in phone service the birth and growth of cellular phone service and the rapid increase in the use of computers and the Internet The need for a major overhaul was long overdue The previous act basically had to worry about what was going on with wire and radio The 1934 act thought of communications as a natural monopoly Communications were clearer cut back then and it was easier to think of just one organization regulating the use of that technology whether it was radio or wire Telecommunication now is more diverse and affects the society more directly We have products that combine technologies like cable and cellular phone systems that provide Internet access The 1996 act was devised with certain purposes for todays telecommunication technologies The former Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission Reed Hundt said in a speech soon after the passing of the act The new law assumes that all parts of the communications marketplace can be made competitive The new law is intended to end the era of big government in communications and begin the era of genuine competition Hundt 1996 One purpose of the new act was to promote competition and reduce regulation in order to secure lower prices and higher quality services for American telecommunications consumers Another purpose was to encourage the rapid deployment of new telecommunications technologies In addition the Telecommunications Act essentially decreases regulation barriers against cable television providers supplying telecommunications services and removes all restrictions relating to the ownership of television and radio stations The Act is also suppose to make it easier for long distance providers and local Bell Operating Companies BOC to be able to provide each others services Hughes 1996 So this
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