A federal appeals court differentiates Internet-based phone from traditional

By Derek Sooman on
The US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in St. Louis has upheld a ruling that IP based phone services should not be treated in the same way as traditional services are handled. The move is good news to companies who specialise in providing a telephone service over the Internet, as it frees them from some restricting state regulations.

[This is] a victory for companies like Vonage that provide phone calls over the Internet. Those companies have argued that they are different from traditional telecommunications providers, in part because they supply the computer software used to make and receive calls but do not own and operate the physical network that carries the calls.

As more communication takes place using Internet technology, supporters of deregulating telecommunications are arguing that the new era demands a new set of rules. Many of the laws governing telecommunication are out of date and require a new 21st century perspective.

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