The First Amendment and the principles of free expression are fundamental to the proper functioning of our society and they are a bedrock of the law. The fact that this sentiment is well-worn to the point of cliche doesn't make it any less true. Speech and other expressive conduct must be protected, even when it's bad speech, and even when the short-term consequences of allowing it seem bad too--because the consequences of having the government decide what kinds of speech are acceptable and what kinds of speech are not are even worse.
But the importance of free expression has unfortunately provided some telecom companies with rhetorical cover in their attempt to avoid all oversight, and with aid and comfort from some in the judiciary, they've attempted to characterize business activities that are not expressive as "speech" and to enlist the Bill of Rights in the battle against consumer interests.
Don't get me wrong. The FCC can and does violate the Constitution--the most salient example being its quixotic and illegal attempts to prevent broadcasters from airing content that is, in its eyes, "indecent." This is absurd; to the extent that broadcasters are producing programming they are indeed "speakers" for First Amendment purposes, and given the proliferation of media outlets and the reduced importance of broadcasting in public discourse overall, any justification there may once have been for putting limits on their rights under the First Amendment when it comes to indecency are gone. (This is not entirely the FCC's fault--it has no choice but to follow the law, and Congress requires it to do these things.)
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