Last night, I attended a reception honoring Jeff Pulver organized by the Computer and Telecommunications Law Section of the DC Bar Association. Jonathan Askin, the pulver.com General Counsel, invited me along even though I'm not a member of the DC Bar and I can't thank him enough. Yes, it was a room of lawyers, but it was a great event with excellent food, and an open bar!
Jeff mostly spoke about his background, endeavours, and excitement about VoIP. He opened with his background as a ham operator, then segued in to how software is changing the telecoms industry, the next industry to be shaken by the Internet is television, and how Moore's Law is impacting communications.
The discussion got interesting during Q&A as folks started asking about regulations and the general global consensus on the technology shift. Obviously, many of the people present in the room represented the Bells or CLECs, so there was a little bit of curious tension.
Jeff urged the US FCC to take the lead, one (obviously) of little regulation. He felt and suggested that many other governing bodies and PTTs would likely follow suit to the US' actions. I agree and believe that this is of quintessential importance as voice is a global application (as the Internet is a global service), bound by no one country or regulatory body. Freedom of evolution, and limited oversight, is essential to a successful network and to a useful voice utility for consumers. I hope that our bureaucrats and politicians do what's right, and don't get embroiled in short-term near-sightedness for the almight lobby...