FCC Has Repealed Net Neutrality Rules, But Congress Can Reverse The Decision

Net neutrality ends this Monday June 11th motion to keep it alive could die in the House

fccdotgov/FlickrToday, the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) repeal of Obama-era "net neutrality" regulations goes into effect. But what's more likely to occur are subtle changes to your Internet experience that you may or may not notice. Under Chairman Tom Wheeler, the FCC classified broadband internet as a Title II service, putting it in line with utilities like telephone service and electricity. "They are not concerned that Internet service providers are going to block access to lawful content". The rollback took effect officially on Monday.

Last month, FCC chairman Ajit Pai said the retraction of net neutrality rules was needed to remove needless and onerous regulations.

Pai says Internet service will become cheaper and faster with the rules now gone.

There is also 5G internet being rolled out later this year that will bring new wireless home internet options.

As of late May, 29 state legislatures had introduced bills meant to ensure net neutrality, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

In an opinion piece published on CNET, Mr Pai in the many years of net growth before the neutrality rules "Facebook, Amazon, and Google went from small start-ups to global tech giants". Now Comcast Cable president Dave Watson posted a blog post today to reconfirm Comcast's "committed to an open internet". Such arrangements, known as online "fast lanes" in the eyes of critics, threatened hefty tolls that only the largest businesses could afford to pay, net neutrality advocates warned.

The Federal Trade Commission will be able to investigate if internet providers engage in anticompetitive behavior.

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Washington and OR now have their own net neutrality laws, and a bill is pending in California's legislature. "And in the medium- to long-term, I think we're going to see more investment in high-speed networks, particularly in rural areas that are hard to serve".

Comcast Corp (CMCSA.O), Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N) and AT&T Inc (T.N) have pledged to not block or discriminate against legal content after the rules expire.

"Not only is the FCC eliminating basic net neutrality rules, but it's joining forces with the FTC to say it will only act when a broadband provider is deceiving the public", Chris Lewis, VP at Public Knowledge, a nonprofit that focuses on the open internet, said in an earlier statement.

Several states are rushing to pass new net neutrality laws to replace the FCC rules.

In May, congress overturned the repeal with a bipartisan vote in the Senate.

Jessica Rosenworcel, a Democrat on the FCC, said in prepared remarks Saturday that the FCC had puts itself "on the wrong side of history, the wrong side of the law, and the wrong side of the American public". What's more, five Democratic governors have issued executive orders barring their states from doing business with a broadband firm that violates the principals of net neutrality.

The reality is that what no one knows exactly what the internet will look like moving forward without net neutrality in place.

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