Small Broadband Providers Given Flexibility to Adopt Broadband Consumer Labels

by Assistant Chief Counsel, Jamie Saloom

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently announced compliance deadlines for broadband providers to provide consumers with a new Broadband Consumer Label when they are shopping for broadband services. The labels, which are similar to FDA nutrition labels, will provide consumers with information including prices, introductory rates, data allowances, and speed. Additionally, the labels are required to be machine-readable, which could yield useful real-time data regarding the current market for broadband services.

During the public comment for the proceeding, and in the subsequent Paperwork Reduction Act review, small broadband providers expressed concerns to Advocacy and the FCC about the compliance burdens associated with developing the labels. Resource constraints put small broadband providers at a disadvantage when faced with regulatory compliance burdens, but consumers benefit from the presence of competitive alternatives in the broadband market. Advocacy consistently speaks with small business stakeholders about FCC regulations and shares their concerns with the FCC. Following conversations with small broadband providers about the broadband labels, Advocacy staff met with FCC staff to highlight the concerns of small broadband providers about the proposed rules.

In this case, the FCC listened to small broadband providers and adopted a one-year compliance extension for providers with fewer than 100,000 subscriber lines. Advocacy supports this kind of regulatory flexibility because it evens the playing field for small broadband providers while also ensuring consumers, including small businesses, benefit from transparency.

Small business engagement in the regulatory process matters, and Advocacy appreciates the small businesses that share their perspectives with us and the regulatory agencies we work with.

To read more about the new labels, visit            

For questions about any FCC regulatory matters, please contact Assistant Chief Counsel Jamie Saloom at