May 22, 2024

Brighton Journal

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FCC reinstates net neutrality in blow to ISPs

FCC reinstates net neutrality in blow to ISPs

Major ISPs will once again have to adhere to a set of strict rules of the road, which prevent them from blocking or throttling traffic, as the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) today reinstated net neutrality regulations.

The commission voted 3-2 along party lines to adopt the rules, which broadly prohibit Comcast, AT&T, Verizon and other providers from favoring some types of Internet traffic over others.

The latest net neutrality rules are similar to those adopted in 2015, when the FCC voted to reclassify internet service as common carrier, or the same regulatory classification given to telephone service. The commission, with a majority of Democratic members, sought the reclassification as a way to give the FCC regulatory authority to set important net neutrality rules.

But less than three years later, after Donald Trump became president, the Republican-controlled Federal Communications Commission reversed net neutrality, to protest online and outside the FCC's offices.

Opponents of net neutrality argue that even without such regulation, great fears that the Internet would turn into a tiered system of fast lanes have not materialized.

However, proponents note that a host of new state regulations have relaxed the behavior of major ISPs.

Congress has been unable to pass legislation that would codify net neutrality, although there have been numerous attempts over the past fifteen years to reach a legislative compromise.

“Four years ago, the pandemic changed life as we know it. We were told to stay home, hunker down, and live online,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel, who led the campaign to reinstate the rules. “A lot of work, school and health care have moved To the Internet. “If we want to engage with the world, we have to do it all through broadband connectivity,” she said at the hearing.

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“It has become clear that no matter who you are or where you live, you need broadband to have a fair chance at success in the digital age. It has gone from a nice-to-have to a necessity for everyone, everywhere. Broadband is now an essential service Basic services – those we depend on for every aspect of modern life – are subject to some basic oversight.