FCC's net neutrality repeal published, opening door to opposition efforts

FCC chair Pai receives NRA gun award for courage

Greg Nash

It failed to listen to their concerns and gave short shrift to their deeply held belief that internet openness should remain the law of the land.

On December 14, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to repeal Obama-era net neutrality regulations.

Recording the FCC's repeal of net neutrality in the Federal Register doesn't put the new laws - or, more accurately, lack of laws - into effect.

The state governments "are doing what the FCC chose not to do - listening to consumers who overwhelmingly support net neutrality rules - and sending a strong message to internet service providers looking to do business in their states", says Schwantes.

The FCC officially published its repeal on Thursday meaning net neutrality, the rules prohibiting internet providers from playing favorites, is slated to end in just 60 days. A spokesman for FCC Chairman Ajit Pai did not immediately comment.

"As a result of the mess the agency created, broadband systems will now have the power to block websites, throttle services and censor online content".

In addition to NY, attorneys general from California, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and Washington joined Thursday's petition.

The final draft of the rules sets April 23 as the day the repeal goes into effect, but portions of the order are still pending approval from the Office of Management and Budget, which could delay its implementation.

The Democrats have so far secured 50 votes in the Senate, and need one more. Assuming it somehow did pass in the House, the next stop would be the desk of President Donald Trump - who would more than likely veto the resolution.

Large internet providers like Verizon, AT&T and Comcast hailed the decision as a win, but smaller providers and content-producing companies like Netflix criticized the ruling when it passed in December.

On the other side, technology firms including Google's parent company Alphabet Inc and Facebook have thrown their weight behind the congressional bid to reverse the net neutrality repeal. That happened today, and barring any intervention from Congress, net neutrality rules are kaput in two months.

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