Tags: net neutrality | rules | repealed | fcc

Net Neutrality Rules Set to Be Repealed

Image: Net Neutrality Rules Set to Be Repealed

Demonstrators protest a plan by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to repeal net neutrality outside a Verizon store on Dec. 7, 2017, in Chicago, Illinois. (Patrick Gorski/NurPhoto/Sipa USA via AP)

By    |   Monday, 11 December 2017 12:47 PM

So-called net neutrality rules put in place during the Obama administration will be on the Federal Communications Commission docket Thursday, and their elimination could change the way the internet operates.

FCC chairman Ajit Pai has resisted calls from Democrats to delay the vote, and the outcome in the Republican-leaning panel appears to be a forgone conclusion to get rid of the regulations, The Hill newspaper said.

Pai's repeal proposal would scrap the Obama-era internet rules and turnover authority for broadband providers to the Federal Trade Commission, The Hill said. Opponents said the move would leave customers unprotected.

Net neutrality supporters have long argued that repealing the rules could allow large broadband providers to block access to sites like Google, or slow down streaming services like Netflix unless they pay a toll, which likely would be passed along to customers, noted the Business Insider.

While those companies and internet giants like Amazon and Facebook would be able to pay such hypothetical fares, smaller internet companies will be left out of the loop, limiting choices on the web, the Business Insider said.

The current rules, put in place in 2015, prevent broadband companies from treating websites differently as far as loading speed or charging websites or apps more for faster speeds, National Public Radio said.

"President (Bill) Clinton got it right in 1996 when he established a free market-based approach to this new thing called the internet, and the internet economy we have is a result of his light-touch regulatory vision," Pai told NPR last month.

"We saw companies like Facebook and Amazon and Google become global powerhouses precisely because we had light-touch rules that apply to this internet. And the internet wasn't broken in 2015 when these heavy-handed regulations were adopted," he continued.

A group of internet pioneers, though, including Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, has signed a letter addressed to the U.S. Senate FCC oversight committee asking them to censure this week's vote, according to the tech website The Verge.

"The current technically-incorrect order discards decades of careful work by FCC chairs from both parties, who understood the threats that internet access providers could pose to open markets on the internet," the letter said, according to The Verge.

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So-called net neutrality rules put in place during the Obama administration will be on the Federal Communications Commission docket Thursday, and their elimination could change the way the Internet operates.
net neutrality, rules, repealed, fcc
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2017-47-11
Monday, 11 December 2017 12:47 PM
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