2005 年 56 巻 1 号 p. 252-272,354
As David B. Truman has suggested, increasing societal complexity, characterized by economic specialization and social differentiation, causes group proliferation. This research focuses on how increasing societal complexity due to the emergence of the Internet has affected the telecommunications political process in the U. S. by analyzing the Universal Service policy process.
Because of new issues such as the National Information Infrastructure and Internet access, more and more political actors have participated in the political process. The Telecommunications Act of 1996 also affects telecommunications policy. After the establishment of the 1996 Act, the Federal Communications Commission launched its rulemaking for the new Universal Service support mechanisms. The new Universal Service programs, especially the E-rate program, have created a great number of new constituencies. The education community and the American Library Association (ALA) play a great role in the E-rate policy implementation process. This paper will show you how new political actors like education groups and the ALA have become politicized in the field of telecommunications in the Internet Age as well as illustrate how this would be interpreted in the current American politics.