In a previous article here on LLRX, Gigi Sohn wrote about how the new Federal Communications Commission majority revoked the approval of nine companies to become Lifeline providers and how that would weaken the Lifeline program and widen the digital divide. Sohn follows up with a discussion of how the E-Rate program, which makes broadband services more affordable for America’s schools and libraries, is in the FCC majority’s crosshairs. And much like the case of Lifeline, Sohn argues the majority is using procedural steps and administrative tools to weaken the E-Rate program.
Lifeline is one of four FCC programs intended to ensure that all Americans have access to modern communications. This article by Gigi Sohn, who served as Counselor to the Chairman in the Office of FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler until December 2016, elucidates how the new FCC majority fundamentally dislikes the Lifeline Program and will seek to weaken it by any means possible. She begins her discourse with a primer on the Lifeline program to allow researchers to educate themselves with the facts as the battle over dismantling this program evolves.