Gus Hurwitz

Gus Hurwitz

Gus Hurwitz, a visiting fellow at AEI's Center for Internet, Communications, and Technology Policy, is an assistant professor at the University of Nebraska College of Law, where he teaches telecommunications law, cyber law, law and economics, and other regulation-related subjects. His research builds on his background in law, technology, and economics to consider the interface between law and technology and the role of regulation in high-tech industries. He has a particular expertise in telecommunications law and technology. He was previously the inaugural research fellow at the University of Pennsylvania Law School’s Center for Technology, Innovation and Competition, and before that was a visiting assistant professor at George Mason University Law School. He previously spent several years as a trial attorney with the US Department of Justice Antitrust Division’s Telecommunications and Media Enforcement Section. Hurwitz has a background in technology and worked at Los Alamos National Laboratory. During this time, his work was recognized with professional awards from organizations such as the Federal Laboratory Consortium, R&D Magazine, Los Alamos National Lab, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the Association for Computing Machinery, and the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California. In addition, he held an Internet2 Land Speed world record with the Guinness Book of World Records. Hurwitz is a co-blogger at Truth on the Market.
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Chairman Wheeler and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad Open Internet Order

We’ve had a few days now to digest the FCC’s Open Internet Order. While this exercise will be ongoing for the foreseeable future, one thing has become abundantly clear: the Order is worse than expected. This is particularly true when it comes to the issue of paid prioritization. The FCC’s analysis is threadbare and conclusory throughout. It cites comments selectively and without serious effort to analyze substantive concerns. It ignores and mischaracterizes evidence in the record. It bases its conclusions on irrelevant and at times self-contradictory factors. The commission plays so fast and loose with the record and draws so many clearly erroneous conclusions of fact and law that the only questions left are these: how badly is the commission going to lose, and what will the long-term impact be for the commission’s reputation?
(Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The historical blunders of Chairman Wheeler’s net neutrality plan

Chairman Wheeler took to the Internet on Wednesday to announce the contours of his net neutrality plan. Consummate historian that he is, he buttressed his proposal with historical anecdotes, discussing the FCC’s open access efforts in the 1960s, his own failed business efforts in the 1980s, and the history of mobile voice service in the 1990s. But the chairman gets these stories wrong, in ways that reflect the frivolity of his chosen path forward. Sadly, the more apt tale from history is one that the FCC knows all too well – walking the long road to its regulations being thrown out by the Supreme Court. The chairman’s chosen path – both here and with other decisions taken under his leadership – will certainly lead the FCC to court.
Airplane by Shutterstock

The hidden economics of hidden city pricing: Lessons from the airline industry

You know you’re going to get negative press when you sue a 22-year-old “computer whiz” who is helping save people money. Yet that is precisely what United Airlines and Orbitz are doing: they have brought suit against the proprietor of a website that helps people find so-called “hidden city” fares. The suit certainly seems – and in many ways is – ridiculous. But it gives me a chance to talk about one of my favorite topics: airline ticket pricing. There’s a lot more going on in the pricing of airline tickets than meets the eye; understanding this complexity offers lessons about pricing in many high-tech industries.

2015: The year of video, or of video regulation?

It’s still a bit early for 2014 retrospectives and 2015 predictions, but I’d like to offer an initial forecast for the year to come: it will be the year in which video regulation catches up, or at least tries to, with the changing video marketplace. I’m both optimistic and fearful about what this year of regulatory change will bring. Things will go well if regulators remember this one point: we have never regulated video for the sake of regulating video. However, I pessimistically expect that regulators will approach video as a thing that must be regulated, without concern for underlying justifications. The past year has seen many long-simmering issues in the video marketplace come to a boil. On the law and regulatory side, we have seen the Supreme Court’s Aereo decision, multiple pieces of proposed video legislation, the FCC’s forthcoming Online Video NPRM, and the importance of online video in the net neutrality debate.
TechWave by Shutterstock

mmWave hello to our millimeter friend

At its October Open Commission Meeting, the FCC adopted a Notice of Inquiry  (NOI) to examine the use of so-called “millimeter-wave” (mmWave) spectrum – spectrum at frequencies above 24 GHz. This NOI is a breath of fresh air, with the potential to facilitate technologies that will revolutionize not only the telecommunications industry, but also telecommunications regulation. Today, I look at why mmWave spectrum is important, its challenges, and what the FCC needs to do to not screw it up. (Spoiler alert: it’s already veering down the wrong path!) What is mmWave spectrum? What are the challenges? As the name suggests, millimeter-wave spectrum is spectrum with a wavelength measured on the order of millimeters. The wavelength of 24 GHz spectrum, for instance, is 12.5 mm; the wavelength of 90 GHz spectrum is 3.3 mm. mmWave has the potential to facilitate widespread deployment of new multi-gigabit Internet service options in every market in the United States.