All About CISPA

A BRIEF HISTORY OF CISPA

The California ISP Association (CISPA) was founded in January 2000 in response to a need to protect the rights of independent Internet service providers to have access to the publicly-regulated networks of the former Bell telephone companies. These network access rights were a requirement outlined in the 1996 Telecommunications Act and enforced by the FCC and state regulatory agencies.

Initially involved in DSL line-sharing issues and interconnection policies, CISPA then initiated a formal regulatory with the California PUC regarding SBC’s business practices in providing wholesale DSL transport to ISP’s. The complaint ended in a settlement in August 2003, with SBC agreeing to change a variety of processes for provisioning and providing DSL transport.

As the largest state ISP association in the U.S., CISPA has expanded its member services beyond the regulatory and legislative focus to provide services that impact an ISP’s business and help protect the rights of residential and business customers to choose the type of Internet service that best fits their needs. Member services now include preferred vendor programs, seminars and conferences, online peer forums and regulatory and legislative advocacy.

CISPA continues to focus on network access issues such as DSL, cable system access, wireless spectrums and “naked DSL,” plus emerging technology issues such as VoIP, spam, privacy and security.

ORGANIZATIONAL PROFILE OF CISPA

The California ISP Association (CISPA) provides California ISPs with a unified voice to address business, legislative and technology issues. CISPA gives ISPs a forum to ensure the success and growth of their businesses. Independent ISPs and the vendors that service the ISP industry will survive and grow only if they band together to bring business and regulatory benefits to the ISP industry as a whole.

CISPA’s organizational focus is to bring immediate business benefits to its members while working on longer term legislative and regulatory issues that currently impact or may impact ISPs. Most recently, CISPA’s regulatory efforts have included issues such as DSL, the UNE platform, interconnection agreements, spam and electronic privacy. Additional issues such as broadband wireless and VoIP are also becoming increasingly important for ISPs looking at new service offerings and revenue diversity.

CISPA delivers value to its members by providing business benefits that have an immediate impact on an ISP’s balance sheet.