AT&T's top policy exec - aka lobbyist - has turned to AT&T employees for a last-chance campaign to flood the FCC with anti-net neutrality messages. In a memo that's starting to circulate around the Internet, Senior Executive VP Jim Cicconi tells encourages the employees, their friends and family to "join the voices telling the FCC not to regulate the Internet."
He suggests that employees use their personal e-mail accounts - so as to not be identified as AT&T employees, one might presume - to join the discussions on the FCC's site, which is taking public comments on proposed network neutrality rules that will be subject of the commission's meeting on Thursday. Cicconi writes:
Those who seek to impose extreme regulations on the network are flooding the site to influence the FCC. It's now time for you to voice your opinion!
The memo reeks of desperation on the part of AT&T, which has put itself in the spotlight as the anti-net neutrality poster child. Most recently, the company has said that if the FCC insists on net neutrality rules that Web companies such as Google also deserve some scrutiny because, as content delivery networks, they serve as gatekeepers to the Web alongside broadband service providers.
In his letter, Cicconi goes on to list possible talking points - including a "if it ain't broke, then don't try to fix it" argument - that employees might consider when expressing their opinions, or rather the opinions of the company. (Here's a thought, JIm: Why not just ask the employees for their personal e-mail addresses and then have your staff pull a couple all-nighters so they can rotate these talking points and make sure that the FCC sees the number of reasons why "regular people" are against net neutrality.)
The memo is posted in its entirety on the Actuarial Outpost blog. The Washington Post confirmed its authenticity with AT&T.