From the "Oh, isn't that precious? department" comes this wonderful story from Ars Technica about how Comcast has stopped blocking HBO Go and Showtime on Roku streaming devices. You didn't know Comcast was doing that? Well anyone who is a Comcast customer and owns a Roku device certainly knew all about it.
Verizon claims it won't sue the FCC over new net neutrality rules if the agency doesn't reclassify broadband as a common carrier under Title II of the Telecommunications Act. At least that is what the broadband and mobile broadband service provider is claiming in a new bog post (as reported on by Ars Technica).
"The biggest regulatory threat to the Internet is 'net neutrality.'" That's what Texas Senator Ted Cruz said today on Facebook. The Libertarian Republican Senator (and a strong voice for the Team Party in the Senate) compared net neutrality rules to Obama Care in a brief statement today.
President Barack Obama has come out with a strong statement explaining why his administration supports the proposed Federal Communication Commission's proposal to reclassify broadband (and possibly mobile) service providers as "common carriers" under Title II of the Telecommunications Act. You may recall that Verizon successfully sued the FCC after it enacted the Open Internet Order of 2010, claiming that the agency had no legal authority under Title II. A D.C.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) officially hit the pause buttons on its review of both the Comcast/Time Warner Cable and AT&T/DirecTV mergers. Normally the FCC operates its review under a "180-day informal time clock," but requests for an extensions from multiple companies has forced the agency to extend the normal approval process period.
The Radio Survivor blog has some anecdotal evidence that Internet radio/podcast hosts from around the country commented during the FCC's public comment period to voice their support for strong open internet rules.
According to a blurb in Politico's Morning Tech, cable operator Comcast has filed a response to dozens of pages of detailed questions the FCC asked it back in August related to its merger with Time Warner Cable.
A filing by Comcast SVP Kathryn Zachem attempts to answer some of those burning questions which includes information on its subscriber base and regional sports networks it owns.
An earlier response sent in by the company was deemed "insufficient" by the FCC.
Netflix has released its Speed Index for September, showing that a paid prioritization deal with Verizon is finally paying off for customers. In September, Verizon FiOS topped all other major ISPs in Netflix performance with an average stream rate of 3.17Mbps. In August, Netflix streamed at an average of 2.41Mbps on Verizon FiOS;in July it was at 1.61Mbps; and in June, 1.58Mbps.
Netflix performance on Verizon DSL has improved slightly, hitting an average speed of 1.68Mbps in September.
President Barack Obama said yesterday that he is still “unequivocally committed to net neutrality” and said that he would like the Federal Communications Commission to ban paid Internet fast lanes. The President made his comments about net neutrality yesterday in response to a question at an event hosted by Cross Campus in Santa Monica, CA.
While they won't say it publicly, broadband and mobile service providers are kind of ticked off with Verizon for suing the FCC in federal court and winning earlier this year. Sure, Verizon got a lot of the Open Internet Order invalidated, but the Federal court actually gave the FCC guidance it needed to move forward: reclassify broadband (and maybe even mobile) as "common carriers" like the telephone under Title II of the Telecommunications Act and get the legal authority they need to enforce the rules.
In an interview with CSPAN, Maureen Ohlhausen, a Republican commissioner with the Federal Trade Commission says that the FCC's plans to reclassify broadband as a "common carrier" under Title II of the Telecommunications Act (as part of a tweak to make net neutrality rules enforceable) would strip the agency of its ability to enforce consumer protection rules.
Comcast, in its ongoing quest to merge with Time Warner Cable, is trying to convince the FCC that becoming one with one of its rivals won't take away any competition from the market because there's still plenty of other competition out there. Comcast submitted the response to the FCC on September 11, but it wasn’t made public until recently by the FCC due to technical problems with the agency's web site.
Verizon has long opposed net neutrality rules and was one of very few companies to sue the FCC in Federal court. Ultimately it prevailed, with the D.C. District court ruling that the FCC did not have the authority to enforce them because broadband and wireless service providers were not classified as common carriers under Title II of the Telecommunications Act. It has also spent - according to San Francisco-based data firm Quid - $100 million to lobby Congress on net neutrality since 2009.
Republican advocacy group American Commitment announced that it has gathered 772,000 American signatures on a petition asking the Federal Communications Commission to avoid "regulating the Internet" ala net neutrality.
It looks like the paid peering agreements video streaming service Netflix signed with AT&T and Verizon earlier this year are finally paying off. According to Netflix's Monthly Speed Index for August, the average Netflix stream on Verizon FiOS was 2.41Mbps during the month, up dramatically from 1.61Mbps in July. AT&T's U-verse service offered average Netflix performance of 2.61Mbps in August, up from 1.44Mbps in July.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) sent a letter to Federal Communications Commission chairman Tom Wheeler (PDF) Monday calling for a ban on "fast lanes" and urging the commission to regulate broadband companies like traditional phone companies (categorize them as "common carriers" under Title II of the Telecommunications Act).
On September 10 rights group Fight for the Future and several prominent technology companies will show the Internet what it might be like if the FCC makes the changes it wants to make to net neutrality.
Earlier this year FCC chairman Tom Wheeler proposed changes to the Open Internet Order (also known as net neutrality) that would make it okay for service providers to charge content providers for faster and better access to their customers. This change, commonly referred to as "fast lanes," has been largely rejected by consumers and embraced by some service providers.
According to this U.S. News report, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler is seriously considering reclassifying broadband internet services in the United States as common carriers under Title II of the Telecommunications Act.
Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the House technology subcommittee, is asking Reddit to "rebrand" net neutrality. The contest, found here, seeks to repackage and rename the concept of equal treatment for online content and to "bring some clarity to an otherwise muddy legal debate before the FCC finalizes its proposed open Internet rules."
Comcast and Time Warner Cable have pulled $132,000 in donations from an event honoring a current FCC commissioner, according to Ars Technica. Earlier this week the news that the donation was being given to the dinner honoring FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn set off a firestorm of accusations that the companies who would like to become one giant ISP were trying to buy Clyburn's vote on the proposed merger.
U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) is urging the FCC to host a series of planned hearings on "net neutrality" rules outside of Washington.
The FCC is seeking further input on several changes to net neutrality including allowing ISPs to charge content providers for faster access to customers (commonly referred to as "fast lanes"). During its public comment period for these changes, more than 1 million comments were submitted, with the majority of them opposing the changes.
TechCrunch reports that the Federal Communications Commission will host four Open Internet Round Tables related to net neutrality in Sept. and Oct. The four roundtables will be broken up into six sessions:
-September 16 (morning): Policy Approaches to Ensure an Open Internet
-September 16 (afternoon): Mobile Broadband and the Open Internet
-September 19 (morning): Effective Enforcement of Open Internet Requirements
President Barack Obama said on Tuesday that he does not support the FCC proposal for fast lanes - allowing service providers to charge content providers for faster access to customers. The last time the President spoke about net neutrality directly was in 2008 during the presidential campaign against Mitt Romney.
President Obama said that making the Internet more accessible to some at the expense of others was against his administration's policy on net neutrality rules: