Barack Obama To Nominate Julius Genachowski For FCC Chairman

January 13, 2009 4:40 PM ET

Get familiar with the name Julius Genachowski: The man of many syllables will come up every time there's an article about media mergers, censorship fights or perhaps another Nipplegate. Barack Obama is expected to name Genachowski as his nominee for FCC Chairman, according to reports. Genachowski is a former Harvard Law classmate of Obama's, and was previously the President-Elect's technology adviser. He's credited with assisting Obama's team with their innovative use of the Internet while campaigning last year (read more about him here: Obama's Brain Trust).

Genachowski certainly has the resume for his new role: He served on the chief counsel for Clinton-era FCC Chairman Reed Hundt, plus held several posts at the Internet media company IACI. One of Genachowski's first tasks will be expanding and investing broadband technology, which is also part of Obama's economic stimulus plan. More importantly, however, Genachowski will also have to oversee the February 17th transition to mandated digital television. The date might be pushed back as millions of TV owners have yet to acquire the appropriate means to prevent their sets from going off the air.

Another task that awaits Genachowski as head of the Federal Communications Committee is Net neutrality, plus the need to "manage the expectations of Internet service providers and content holders." Genachowski was also a former member of the Board of Directors of Ticketmaster, so Live Nation might want to hold back on taking over all facets of the music world for a little while. Another fun fact: Genachowski's wife is documentary filmmaker Rachel Goslins, who made the film 'Bama Girl that recently aired on HBO.

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