All posts tagged: Net neutrality

FCC Closes ‘Fast Lane’ Loophole in Final Net Neutrality Order

FCC Closes ‘Fast Lane’ Loophole in Final Net Neutrality Order

[ad_1] The Federal Communications Commission released its final net neutrality order on Tuesday, and it includes a few edits to the draft version ensuring that internet service providers can’t sneakily violate fast-lane bans. Speaking to WIRED on Tuesday, a senior FCC official said that the final net neutrality order has been updated to ensure that paid fast lanes in consumer-facing products violate the agency’s rules. The official also said that providers couldn’t mask consumer products as enterprise ones to skirt the rules, either. In April, the FCC reinstated net neutrality rules that would reclassify broadband, once again, as a “common carrier” service under Title II of the Telecommunications Act. By reinstating net neutrality, the agency can prevent internet service providers, like AT&T and Verizon, from blocking, throttling, or offering pay to play fast lanes to online services. But many critics feared the draft rules were outdated and didn’t account for new developments in technologies like 5G and, more specifically, “network slicing.” Telecom executives have argued that network slicing, or the act of chopping a network …

Net Neutrality Returns to a Very Different Internet

Net Neutrality Returns to a Very Different Internet

[ad_1] The Federal Communications Commission has voted—once again—to assert its power to oversee and regulate the activities of the broadband industry in the United States. In a 3-2 vote, the agency reinstated net neutrality rules that had been abandoned during the height of the Trump administration’s deregulatory blitz. “Broadband is now an essential service,” FCC chair Jessica Rosenworcel said Thursday in prepared remarks. “Essential services—the ones we count on in every aspect of modern life—have some basic oversight.” The rules approved by the agency on Thursday will reclassify broadband services in the United States once more as “common carriers” under Title II of the Telecommunications Act, subjecting broadband to the same public-utilities-style scrutiny as telephone networks and cable TV. That distinction means that the agency can prevent internet service providers from blocking or throttling legal content, or letting online services pay ISPs to prioritize their content with faster delivery speeds. But it’s difficult, particularly in an election year, to say whether net neutrality is here to stay or whether the FCC’s vote is just another …

Keeping the internet fair

Keeping the internet fair

It’s not often you hear large corporations arguing in favour of government regulations. But a group representing some of the world’s biggest technology companies, including Google and Facebook, is doing just that. They want the US government to abandon its plan to repeal the laws preserving net neutrality, the idea that internet service providers (ISPs) should treat all internet traffic the same and not block, slow down or otherwise discriminate against particular websites or online services. The US Federal Communications Commission recently received 10m comments in its consultation on the subject and they largely opposed the plans. Yet the regulator seems determined to follow through with a repeal of the net neutrality rules. There are undeniably good arguments on both sides and finding a consensus is hard. But the main problem is not that the current rules preserving net neutrality are unbalanced. There’s a more fundamental question about whether we needed such rules in the first place. If not, repealing them won’t spell the disaster that activists fear. In fact, it would mean net neutrality …