Vonage has asked a federal court to prevent the state from forcing it and its customers to pay a state telephone fee.
In a lawsuit recently filed in U.S. District Court, Vonage says the Nebraska Public Service Commission and its officials should not force it to pay into the state's Universal Service Fund.
"These defendants know that Vonage's service is subject to exclusive federal regulatory jurisdiction, yet they are attempting to compel Vonage to pay a state-law surcharge for the Nebraska Service Fund in violation of the United States Constitution, the Communications Act of 1934 and the Telecommunications Act of 1996," the complaint reads.
Traditional phone companies pay into a Universal Service Fund. But VoIP providers say they provide an information service rather than a telecommunications service.
So what's your take--should Vonage have to pay into the Universal Service Fund just as traditional telephone companies do?
And even more to the root of the issue, is Vonage an information service or telecommunications service?