Former FCC Commissioner Harold Furchtgott-Roth, now a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute, sees little good coming out of the agency's new rules to guarantee Internet neutrality.
The FCC will treat the Internet as a utility and forbid Internet service providers from charging content providers to speed up transmission of their content.
Legal challenges are likely. But, "those looking to the courts to protect the American consumer and Silicon Valley from the excesses of the FCC are likely to be disappointed," Furchtgott-Roth writes on MarketWatch.
And the results won't be pretty, he says.
"The power of the FCC under network neutrality to regulate the Internet, if not constrained by judges, will be neither light nor lenient. Friends can be helped and enemies punished, but the discretion to use the power will reside in Washington, not Silicon Valley."
Before, Internet companies competed against each other for business with "better products, better services and better ideas," Furchtgott-Roth says.
"Under the new Internet, one seeks to have a Washington bureaucracy hobble a rival. . . . Consumers are the collateral damage."
Not surprisingly, Internet companies themselves had a split reaction to the FCC's new regulations. Service providers oppose the rules, while content companies support them.
"On one hand, you have the Internet companies like Netflix and Facebook who are trying to ensure they have unfettered access to the consumer and that the consumer has unfettered access to them," star media analyst Craig Moffett of Moffett Research told CNBC.
"And on the other hand, you have companies like Verizon, AT&T and Comcast who are saying they don't oppose any of the net neutrality-related rules, but the legal framework in order to get there imposes all these burdensome regulations and the risk of government overreach."
The latter companies fear price regulation, he notes.
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