Daniel Lyons

Daniel Lyons

Daniel Lyons is a visiting fellow with AEI's Center for Internet, Communications, and Technology Policy, and an associate professor at Boston College Law School, where he specializes in telecommunications and Internet regulation, as well as administrative law. Professor Lyons’ scholarship focuses on the challenges that technological development poses for legacy regulatory regimes. Among other topics, he has written on technology convergence and the need to redefine the boundary between federal and state jurisdiction over telecommunications; the relationship between net neutrality and traditional common carriage; and the importance of allowing pricing innovation in broadband markets. He is also a member of the Board of Academic Advisors for the Free State Foundation and a Fellow with the Boston Bar Association. Before joining the faculty, Professor Lyons practiced energy and telecommunications law at Munger, Tolles & Olson and at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in Los Angeles. Professor Lyons earned both his bachelor’s degree and juris doctorate from Harvard University and after graduation, he clerked for Hon. Cynthia Holcomb Hall on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Pasadena, California.
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Why we need a market-driven, consumer-focused revamp of the Lifeline program

The basic tenet of universal service – that the government should assist those who cannot afford basic access to the telecommunications network – has long been a cornerstone of the nation’s telecommunications policy. As I have discussed in an earlier post, this assistance is justified by network effects: the larger the number of people a network reaches, the more valuable that network is to each user. Universal service also supports non-economic goals such as improved civic participation, enhanced economic opportunities, free speech, and public safety. As the telephone gives way to the Internet as the nation’s primary telecommunications network, Congress must consider options to narrow the digital divide and assist low-income consumers who cannot afford basic network access.

Google wireless and the evolution of usage-based pricing

Google made headlines last month when it announced it was bringing its magic to the wireless market. Its new service, Google Fi, will be a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) that connects consumers via wifi networks and the T-Mobile and Sprint wireless networks. Although Google Fi is not a facilities-based entrant, commentators hope that Google will disrupt the wireless broadband market the way its Google Fiber offering has impacted fixed broadband networks.
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Title II and the future of LTE broadcast

Over the past 18 months, LTE broadcast has garnered significant buzz as one of the just-around-the-corner technologies that will help optimize the wireless experience. On the eve of the 2014 Super Bowl in New York, Verizon Wireless demonstrated the service, showing how it might someday solve the bandwidth problems that caused the NFL to blackout streaming video at stadiums. Since then, both Verizon and AT&T have invested significantly in the technology and are expected to debut services later this year. As the wireless industry analyzes the changed legal landscape following the FCC’s reclassification decision, the always-insightful Phil Goldstein at FierceWireless asks an interesting question: what does Title II mean for LTE broadcast? The answer is not as clear as one may think – but it may provide hope for those worried about how future innovation will fare under the FCC’s new framework. LTE broadcast is a technology that facilitates multicasting over wireless networks. With traditional streaming, a content provider sends an individual copy of requested content to each consuming device.
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Broadband rate regulation is inevitable under Title II

Throughout its net neutrality proceeding, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has been deliberately vague about the contours of its proposal to reclassify broadband as a Title II telecommunications service. Will sponsored data or T-Mobile’s Music Choice service survive the new rules? To what degree will the FCC regulate interconnection, after insisting in its initial notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) that it would not? What impact will the reclassification decision have...

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Telecommunications law primer: The Federal Universal Service Fund

A common lament of telephone consumers is that they don’t always pay what they expect to pay for their phone plans. They purchase these plans at a fixed price, but when the bill comes, the total is inflated by a laundry list of regulatory fees. In today’s blog post, part of an ongoing series of telecommunications law primers, we will explore the law underlying the most prominent of these charges: those related to the...