In February the FCC released its 400-page report and orders regarding Internet neutrality, with a vote of 3-2. The report has been met with some resistance as folks struggle to understand what an Open Internet really means.
FCW writer Adam Mazmanian offers a brief, succinct explanation that is worth noting here:
The rules are fairly succinct, but their historical framework and legal basis take some time to explain. Essentially, they boil down to three basic no-nos for Internet service providers:
- No blocking of access to lawful content or applications;
- No throttling of connection speeds on the basis of devices or content; and
- No paid prioritization, or “fast lanes,” for particular content or services.
The order reclassifies broadband Internet access from an information service to a telecommunications service under Title II of the Communications Act, a reversal of a 13-year-old FCC decision. That is because the way consumers view ISPs has changed, according to a senior FCC official.
FCC’s latest action is expected to draw court challenges. There is also the question of FCC’s funding in Congress. The agency is seeking an $84 million funding increase, with 25 percent of that set to go to IT upgrades, including a move to the cloud, and a rewrite of legacy applications.
“The FCC is a child of Congress, and it is high time that we return to the good government practice of having the authorizing committee take a hard look at the agency before Congress hands over another appropriation,” Walden said in a March 9 speech at the American Enterprise Institute.
For more information regarding the fate of Open Internet, see the full FCW article and the FCC’s website.
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