Published: Wed, June 13, 2018
Technology | By Lionel Gonzales

FCC Has Repealed Net Neutrality Rules, But Congress Can Reverse The Decision

FCC Has Repealed Net Neutrality Rules, But Congress Can Reverse The Decision

But as the Federal Communications Commission's repeal of the rules takes effect, states are pushing their own laws to protect their version of a free and open Internet. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has little reason to celebrate as critics are closely monitoring ISPs and other internet companies to see if they pull any stunts and abuse the laws for corporate benefits.

"The gutting of net neutrality is a symbol of our broken democracy", Fight for the Future Deputy Director Evan Greer said in a statement. "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".

An FCC spokesperson confirmed to CNN this week that the timetable is proceeding as previously announced. More than 80 percent of Americans support net neutrality, according to a University of Maryland poll released in December.

Happening today: Rules that prevented internet providers (like Comcast) from slowing or speeding up service to some sites (like Netflix) are no longer in effect.

No Throttling: broadband providers may not impair or degrade lawful Internet traffic on the basis of content, applications, services, or non-harmful devices. In 2015, the FCC stripped the FTC - the nation's premier consumer protection agency - of its authority over internet service providers.

But even those who oppose the repeal say very little is likely to change right away given pending litigation and possible legislation to settle the issue.

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But, experts say not to worry, changes won't come overnight, and might not at come all. Many Democrats say the issue will help motivate younger people to vote in congressional elections this November, when all 435 seats in the House and a third of the 100-member Senate will be up for grabs. Almost 50 more House lawmakers must sign a discharge petition introduced by Congressman Mike Doyle in order to force a vote.

Pai's primary defense of the FCC's new lax rules on ISPs is the "transparency rule", which requires ISPs to notify consumers of any policies that violate previous Net Neutrality guidelines.

To restore the net neutrality rules, the House would have to vote in line with the Senate, and President Donald Trump would also have to sign the measure.

The repeal effectively narrows what the federal government would consider a net neutrality violation.

Net neutrality looks set to live on in piecemeal form as some USA states are enacting legislation that will require telecoms companies operating in their territories to abide by similar laws.

However James Mayer, who owns an IT company, agrees with Black. Numerous commenters urged the FCC to preserve the government's net neutrality protections, which had treated ISPs similar to utilities. But far more realistically, we're probably going to see some gradual shifts in our service over time, especially since Comcast backed down on its good-faith promise the day the repeal passed and has previously limited access to peer-to-peer applications.

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