Economy

FCC votes to start net neutrality rollback

FCC votes to start net neutrality rollback

In 2015, the FCC said basically if the Internet was a highway, that everyone deserved the same sized lane.

With net neutrality supporters, including senator Edward Markey (Democrat-Massachusetts), protesting outside the agency's building, the Republican-controlled FCC voted 2-1 on party lines to start a formal, months-long process of dismantling the existing rules.

In a widely expected move, the Federal Communications Commission has voted to propose rolling back the net neutrality rules passed during the Obama administration. These rules essentially ban any unequal treatment of data being sent on the web. The idea was that providers should not be able to block access or slow down access to "smaller" customers and play favorites to "big" customers who were willing to pay a lot more.

Making it worse, the ambiguity of the rules mean that providers end up going to the FCC for permission each time their service changes. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai argued the current rules represented a "bureaucratic straitjacket" on the industry.

It is not unusual for dockets to contain duplicate filings, form letters, and not bot-driven floods on one-side or another, but the FCC also said last week it was the subject of a DDoS attack that affected the filing of comments-activist groups are skeptical.

Francis Ford Coppola, director of classic films such as "The Godfather" and "Apocalypse Now", has sent a letter to the top USA telecommunications regulator to urge support for "net neutrality", which prevents internet companies from blocking, throttling or giving "fast lanes" to particular websites.

Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., supports the deregulation.

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, approved of the move by the FCC.

Comments for the public comment period will be accepted until August 16, Gattuso said, with the final rule change likely to come in the fall.


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