Federal Communications Law Journal

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Citation

56 Federal Communications Law Journal 587 (2004)


Over the course of the last several decades, legal and structural fictions have evolved and have been integrated into the reality of communications theory and regulation. In this Article, the Author argues that the development of a "layers approach" to communications regulation of IP networks would lead to greater efficiencies while addressing public policy issues. By reconceptualizing communications regulation along horizontal layers, Mr. Whitt posits that the logical walls surrounding the key components of IP networks should be removed to promote increased functionality of communications oversight and management. In this way, the outmoded vertical separation associated with the legal legacy of communications regulation may be replaced by a horizontal system designed to accommodate new technologies and functions, as opposed to attempting to force congruency between new network characteristics and twentieth century regulations.