FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler plans to announce a new plan on February 5 and put it to a commission vote on February 26 but Republicans in Congress make plan to preempt FCC on net neutrality. House and Senate hearings are scheduled before FCC’s Title II vote.
Legislation by John Thune (R-SD), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce will enforce these 11 “bipartisan rules in the Internet Age”:
- Prohibit blocking
- Prohibit throttling
- Prohibit paid prioritization
- Require transparency
- Apply rules to both wireline and wireless
- Allow for reasonable network management
- Allow for specialized services
- Protect consumer choice
- Classify broadband Internet access as an information service under the Communications Act
- Clarify that Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act may not be used as a grant of regulatory authority
- Direct the FCC to enforce and abide by these principles
Thune’s hearing, scheduled for January 21, at 2:30pm, is titled “Protecting the Internet and Consumers through Congressional Action.”
Even Verizon stock holders seem put off by Verizon’s stance on Net Neutrality. Ars Technica reports that the Nathan Cummings Foundation and Trillium Asset Management LLC, both Verizon shareholders, are not pleased with how Verizon has been responding to the net neutrality controversy.
Apparently, both investment entities see Verizon’s hardline stance against net neutrality as damaging to its long-term reputation, especially since most Internet users seem to like the idea that carriers shouldn’t be allowed to charge tech companies more money to ensure their traffic gets delivered more quickly than their competitors.
Our Senator Sanders is a huge advocate of Net Neutrality and has lobbied resolutely to keep the internet free for all.
The time for open public comments to the FCC has come and gone, it’s now up to the politicians to protect the infrastructure that we have ALL come to rely on. Without any doubt, if fast and slow lanes are created it will be the consumers that will pay and the internet, as we know and rely on it today, will cease to exist. Please encourage your representative in Congress to fight for an internet that is equal for everyone.