During a televised roundtable discussion, former FCC chairmen Reed Hundt, Michael Powell and Kevin Martin offered their viewpoints on net neutrality and other issues facing current chairman Julius Genachowski. Although there was some difference of opinion on the implications of the Comcast-NBC Universal (NBCU) merger, all three agreed unanimously that cross-ownership and other media ownership limits that remain under court review are obsolete and could have been eliminated if political considerations had not come into play. On a weekend episode of The Communicators on C-SPAN, Republicans Powell and Martin joined Hundt, a Democrat for whom Genachowski served as an advisor during the mid-1990s. Lauding his protégé, Hundt praised Genachowski for changing the dialogue in the telecommunications industry in which “it is now widely accepted that universal service ought to be about broadband.” While acknowledging that Genachowski faces a “tough problem” on net neutrality as a result of the D.C. Circuit’s ruling in the Comcast-BitTorrent case, Powell advised Genachowski to “invest your capital and take the risks” and “make clear to all the players what are your bottom lines.” Powell stressed, however, that it is Congress’s role to define the FCC’s power over the Internet, as he asserted that “any proposals to reclassify broadband, even if limited in scope, shouldn’t be viewed as a return to regulation as it was before changes were made during the 1990s.” With respect to the Comcast-NBCU deal, there was some disagreement between Hundt, who maintained that the transaction is a vertical merger that raises no “serious issues,” and Martin, who countered: “the fact that you . . . have the largest cable operator in the country that would also be owning one of their competitors in the business news space, for example, I think certainly raises concerns.” All three chairmen, however, were united in their assessment of the media ownership rules that both Powell and Martin attempted to change only to have their efforts scrutinized in a continuing court challenge. While Hundt admitted that “none of us thought the rule made any sense,” Powell lamented “there is no more incoherent collection of rules than the media ownership rules” that “are rooted in a market that is decades gone.” Charging that the media ownership rules “act as if broadcasting lives in a market completely unto itself.” Powell complained that the rules were “drafted exclusively for broadcasting, ignoring, willfully, the arrival of competitive alternatives” that include cable and the Internet.