TechCrunch Interview: FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski

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Gillmor Gang 4.16.11 (TCTV)


Earlier this week, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski took the stage at the Computer History Museum in San Jose, CA for a special Commonwealth Club event moderated by Adam Lashinsky, Senior Editor at Large of Fortune.

Their conversation touched on a range of issues related to the FCC, including net neutrality and AT&T’s pending acquisition of T-Mobile (which, unsurprisingly, Genachowski couldn’t comment on).

Another big theme involved wireless spectrum — Genachowski says the current spectrum allotted to devices like tablets and mobile phones isn’t going to be able to keep up with rising demand. Which is why the FCC is hoping to launch incentive-based auctions to efficiently reassign spectrum (but it will need Congress’s support to do it).

Immediately following the event Genachowski took some time to speak with us (he says he’s a big fan of TechCrunch). Check out the video above for our interview with him, in which we discuss why the FCC’s net neutrality rules are more lenient with regard to wireless than they are for wired Internet connections.

We also briefly touch on that FCC inquiry into Apple’s rejection of Google Voice back in the summer of 2009 (I ask him how he responded to Apple’s “pondering”).

Also be sure to watch our interview last month with Senator Al Franken, in which we discuss net neutrality.