ND Senate discuss net neutrality, plan moving forward

Cornelia Mascio
Mag 17, 2018

Shortly after today's council action, three Republicans in the U.S. Senate joined with Democrats in a vote to repeal the FCC's anti-net neutrality ruling.

Senators passed a resolution Wednesday to keep the Obama-era internet protections with a 52-47 vote.

Net neutrality supporters are using a legislative tactic, the Congressional Review Act, that allows lawmakers to block an action taken by a federal agency with a simple majority vote in the House and Senate and the president's approval. A consortium of tech companies from Etsy to IAC, which operates Tinder and OKCupid, have banded together to create a campaign called "Red Alert", which supports the congressional vote and other efforts to preserve net neutrality.

Net neutrality rules, enacted under fomer President Barack Obama, prevented internet service providers like Comcast and Verizon from forcing customers to pay extra to access certain websites, or slowing down traffic speeds to certain websites. The Senate vote is just the first step though, as the vote now goes to the House of Representatives, which has until January 2019 to conduct its own vote. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, D-New York, said, "This is our chance - our best chance - to make sure the internet stays accessible and affordable for all Americans".

"A free and open internet is a building block for the 21st Century and we must pursue ways to help it flourish", Sen. This time, however, it was Democrats who led the effort to kill a rule supported by the Trump administration. Congressman Mike Doyle said he would start a discharge petition, a measure that if signed by the majority of House members, requires a piece of legislation to be put to a vote. Murkowski spent about 30 minutes on the Senate floor discussing that procedural vote with key Republicans and Democrats before making her decision.

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai said it was "disappointing" that Senate Democrats forced the resolution through by a narrow margin. Now, equal access means equal access to the tools of economic opportunity.

He said the internet thrived long before the Obama administration stepped in, and he predicted that when the Trump administration's rule scrapping net neutrality goes into effect in June, consumers won't notice a change in service. The FCC said in repealing it last December that it was simply restoring the "light-touch framework" that has governed the internet for most of its existence. But the new rules are opposed by internet firms like Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc. Tech companies have been signaling that the repeal of net neutrality could lead to significant financial consequences. A group of 22 states has sued the FCC over the repeal. Another risk of throwing out net neutrality protections is that consumers could face the Death of Nickels and Dimes as charge add-ons to stream video, game or access social media, experts warn.

The FCC decided in 2015 to reclassify internet service providers as common carriers under a 1996 law.

Altre relazioniGrafFiotech

Discuti questo articolo

Segui i nostri GIORNALE