Obama appoints two gamers to FCC Transition Team

In two separate articles, virtual worlds expert Wagner James Au expresses excitement about two of the individuals . Both have experience with the virtual world, and Au thinks this bodes well for U.S. telecommunications policy.

In one, a piece for New World Notes, he links appointees Susan Crawford and Kevin Werbach to Second Life. Crawford noted her interest in Second Life in . And he points out that Werbach brought a live stream from his Supernova conference in-world . In the second article, , he adds that Werbach is a hardcore World of Warcraft player (Level 70 Tauren Shaman, if you care), listing his character's on his blog's .

The assumption is made that since both Crawford and Werbach have at least some experience with bandwidth-sucking MMOGs, they'll be more sympathetic to the cause of the consumer when it comes to net neutrality issues. Both have been as "long-time neutrality advocates."

However, this may be reading into the appointments a little too much. Regardless of whether each is a gamer or personally supports net neutrality, the FCC doesn't have a great deal of enforcement powers when it comes to dealing with broadband providers. In addition, the FCC is better known for wrist-slapping than anything else. Broadband company lobbyists are already trying to position themselves for the next administration, with that AT&T's chief lobbyist Jim Cicconi feels the current legislation surrounding net neutrality is sufficient:

"He said the FCC shouldn't revise its broadband principles and that the agency should deal with network discrimination practices on a 'case by case basis.'"