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Verizon CEO to Speak at 2011 CES

Verizon head honcho will open show

How broadband networks and consumer electronics devices interact affects billions of people, including broadcasters and new media providers.

Organizers of the 2011 International CES have snagged Verizon Chairman of the Board and CEO Ivan Seidenberg to open the show, and he’s likely to discuss just those topics.

He won’t be a greeter out front of the Las Vegas Convention Center but he will provide the opening keynote at 8:30 a.m. on Jan. 6 at the nearby Hilton Center. The International CES takes place Jan. 6–9 in Las Vegas.

Consumer Electronics Association President and CEO Gary Shapiro called him “is a terrific leader who has positioned Verizon as a top global provider of communications, information and entertainment across a wide variety of platforms.”

(Maybe by then we’ll know if Verizon really has a deal that would involve Internet companies like Google paying a fee for faster delivery speeds on certain services, setting up the possibility of consumers being offered “premium packages.” Critics say this undercuts the concept of new neutrality, in which all Internet traffic is treated the same.)

CES already has Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer set to give a preshow keynote.