repeal of net neutrality rules became official Monday
despite their popularity with the majority of Americans,
opposition from the U.S. Senate and numerous court
challenges already underway against the FCC’s
controversial decision to end the Obama-era regulations.
May, the Senate voted to overturn the Federal
Communications Commission’s repeal. Last week, Senate
Democrats urged House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wisconsin, to
bring the issue to a vote on the House floor.
is incumbent on the House of Representatives to listen
to the voices of consumers, including the millions of
Americans who supported the FCC’s 2015 net neutrality
order, and keep the internet free and open for
all," they said in a letter Thursday. More than 80
percent of Americans support net neutrality, according
to a University of Maryland poll released in December.
House has not held a vote on the bill.
repeal of rules governing net neutrality — the
principle that all internet traffic should be treated
equally — will free internet providers to create slow
and fast lanes, or to prefer certain online traffic over
and simple, thanks to the FCC’s rollback of net
neutrality, internet providers have the legal green
light, the technical ability, and business incentive to
discriminate and manipulate what we see, read, and learn
online," said Jessica Rosenworcel, FCC
commissioner, in a statement Monday. She is now the only
Democratic commissioner left on the FCC, which has been
reshaped under President Trump. Rosenworcel voted
against the FCC’s repeal of the 2015 Open Internet
Rules in December with another Democratic commissioner,
Mignon Clyburn, who has since left the agency.
big ISPs have said they have no plans to throttle
business as usual on the internet today — movies are
streaming, e-commerce is thriving, and advocates are
using the internet to make their voices heard,"
said Jonathan Spalter, president of broadband trade
group USTelecom, which counts AT&T and Verizon as
members, in a statement Monday. "These positive and
profound benefits of a free and open internet — among
many others — are here to stay."
Gigi Sohn, former counselor for former FCC Chairman Tom
Wheeler, said in a statement Monday that consumers will
have little recourse against ISPs if they have a
complaint about internet providers’ behavior:
"For the first time since the creation of
broadband, the (FCC) will not take responsibility for
protecting consumers or competition."
FCC’s new rules require ISPs to publicly disclose how
they manage traffic, but they charge the Federal Trade
Commission with handling complaints should they arise.
Chairman Ajit Pai, who was appointed to his position by
President Trump, drafted the repeal of net neutrality
rules for the sake of innovation and increased broadband
investment, he said. He insisted during an interview
Monday on "CBS This Morning" that
"consumers are going to be protected.
at the FCC, we have a transparency rule where every
company in the U.S. has to disclose their business
practices, and the Federal Trade Commission is empowered
to take action against any company who engages in any
anti-competitive conducts," Pai said.
say the FTC is backward-looking and there will be no
rules to keep ISPs from hurting consumers in the first
states are enacting their own rules, or are in the
process of adopting net neutrality rules. In California,
SB 822 is scheduled for Assembly committee hearings this
week after the state senate approved it at the end of
advocacy groups continue to fight.
gutting of net neutrality is a symbol of our broken
democracy," said Evan Greer, deputy director of
Fight For the Future, in a statement Monday. "It’s
the worst of the worst that the D.C. swamp has to offer.
But it has sparked an unprecedented backlash from across
the political spectrum, and internet users are coming
out of the woodwork to fight tooth and nail in Congress,
in the courts, and at the local and state level."