Open Letter Regarding Rules on Net Neutrality

10 January 2010

Julius Genachowski, Chairman
Federal Communications Commission
445 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC 20554

RE: Rules on Net Neutrality

Dear Chairman Genachowski,

The National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP) is a national membership organization that promotes the advancement, development and funding of Latino/Latina film and media arts in all genres. Our constituents are Latino media makers - writers and producers, directors and performers of such films as LA MISMA LUNA, such television shows as "Ugly Betty," and such documentaries as MAD HOT BALLROOM and "Clemente." Our members are also industry executives and representatives, funders and broadcasters, educators and advocates. NALIP is the only national organization committed to supporting both grassroots and community-based producers/media makers along with publicly funded and industry-based producers from the Latino community. We reach over 10,000 professionals twice each week through our eNewsletter Latinos in the Industry.

We are writing to urge the FCC to pass a series of proposed new rules that will prevent cable and telecom companies from restricting or limiting access to Internet sites and other content as they deliver service to consumers.

Digital technology presents a vast range of possibilities to content creators and consumers alike, and it would be a tragedy to squeeze all of that into a narrow commercial band. Without the rules, a relatively small number of major institutions might also come to control access to content on the Internet -- big studios, network providers, or application and service providers.

The concern is that Internet service providers could give favored treatment to certain sites and services that pay for speedier delivery -- or even block sites that it deems competition -- and shut out less established or connected content creators, notably minority and independent filmmakers who are wildly under-represented in major media establishments (studios, networks, agencies), both in front of the camera and behind it.

NALIP joins other minority and women's organizations in asking the FCC to think hard about the impact of proposed net neutrality rules on the digital divide. We hope that you will consider each of your six proposed neutrality rules, and gauge their effect on minority investment, deployment, adoption, and participation in the broadband economy.

NALIP wants the FCC to know that we support internet freedom. Ultimately we believe that rules well designed to protect net neutrality will provide for the very open marketplace that now exists on the internet. We look to your new rules to prevent the kind of consolidation that has allowed six media conglomerates to achieve control of traditional media outlets, to the detriment of independent production and diversity of content. We believe that Congress and the FCC should codify net neutrality rules that insure Internet Freedom, because this corporate media consolidation has happened on the FCC's watch over the past decade. Please, Mr. Genachowski, don't let this opportunity to impact the future for media artists and their creations follow the same path as your predecessors.

Please feel free to contact us through our Executive Director Kathryn Galan at 310.395.8880, if we can provide additional information regarding the concerns of our media maker constituency.

Respectfully,
Bienvenida Matias
Chair
Board of Directors
The National Association of Latino Independent Producers

Cc: Mark Lloyd, FCC Chief Diversity Officer

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