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FCC: Standalone DSL Not Required

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has ruled that states can't force telephone providers to offer standalone DSL. The decision deals with state regulations that require that providers sell DSL without attaching it to other services, such as local phone lines. Regulators in Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, and Louisiana had forced BellSouth to offer standalone DSL, but BellSouth, along with other regional telephone providers, argued that the state regulations created a confusing mix of regulations that slowed down broadband adoption. Without the availability of standalone DSL connections, customers are forced to spend extra money on local phone lines even if they don't need or use them. This requirement creates extra costs, especially for people whose cell phones are their only telephones. Some companies are already voluntarily offering standalone DSL connections, however. Currently, Qwest Communications sells DSL-only connections; Verizon is expected to follow shortly

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