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Church communicators urge FCC
Washington, October 18, 2010 -- Communicators representing a wide range of national church bodies have called upon the Federal Communications Commission "to take any and all action" to protect the freedom of the Internet.
Noting that Internet communication is "vital" to faith groups as they share their stories and build communities, the National Council of Churches Communication Commission has issued a resolution urging the FCC to "protect the freedom of every individual and group to see and hear and send any information they desire."
The Commission is composed of professional communicators from the NCC's 36 member communions and other faith groups. The members have historically supported freedom of communication in all media, including the Internet, but some have expressed concern that the FCC is not moving quickly enough to guarantee that freedom through federal regulation.
"Faith communities have experienced uneven access to and coverage by mainstream media," the Commission declared, "and wish to keep open the opportunity to create their own material describing their faith traditions."
The FCC must "guarantee network neutrality applicable to all types of technology used by citizens to access Internet communications services, both wired and wireless, and equally applicable to the Internet services provided by telecommunications providers, cable providers, wireless mobile Internet access providers, and any other type of technological access to Internet services," the Commission said.
The resolution included a preamble quoting Dr. Hamadoun Touré, general secretary of the International Communications Union, who said broadband access is a "basic civil right."
The full text of the resolution follows:
Since its founding in 1950, the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA has been the leading force for ecumenical cooperation among Christians in the United States. The NCC's 36 member faith groups -- from a wide spectrum of Protestant, Anglican, Orthodox, Evangelical, historic African American and Living Peace churches -- include 45 million persons in more than 100,000 local congregations in communities across the nation.
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