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.
Net Neutrality gets some much needed love in the September 2014 issue of Game Informer. Game Informer is the number one gaming magazine in the United States, so it's good to see it taking a closer look at how fast lanes, data caps, and general discrimination of traffic by ISPs can affect everyday consumers.
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."
Time Warner Cable is the latest internet service provider to get a fee from streaming video service Netflix, according to GIGA OM. Time Warner Cable has officially signed a paid peering agreement with Netflix, giving it direct access to the ISP's customers.
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:
In a status update on Facebook, Netflix CEO Red Hastings said that Netflix now generates more revenue than premium pay channel Home Box Office (HBO). Reed said in his post that the company managed to pull in $1.146 billion compared to HBO's $1.141 billion.
The Federal Communications Commission this week issued a notice of inquiry seeking public comment on a proposed change to how it measures high-speed Internet and to ask if the agency should change the low end threshold. Currently the FCC defines broadband as 4 Mbps download speed and 1 Mbps upload speed. Under the new proposal it wants to up that number to 10 Mbps or higher for a service to qualify as broadband.
Last week FCC chairman Tom Wheeler sent a letter to Verizon CEO Daniel Mead asking him to explain why he thought his company could throttle unlimited customers in the name of network management. This week Verizon responded by saying that its policy of throttling unlimited data users on congested cell sites is perfectly legal and is a way to give heavy data users an "incentive" to stop using so much data.
The Federal Communications Commission is advancing an investigation (that it formally announced back in June) into how network interconnection problems affect the quality of Internet service. At that time the FCC said that it had obtained the paid peering deals Netflix signed with Comcast and Verizon.
In a recent filing with the FCC, Major League Baseball comes out strongly against allowing for Internet fast lanes. In its statement MLB (through its BAM division) says that fast lanes only serve on singular purpose: to give ISPs a "windfall."
"Fast lanes would serve only one purpose: for Broadband ISPs to receive an economic windfall. American consumers would be worse off as the costs of fast lanes are passed along to them in new fees or charges where there were none, or higher fees or charges where they existed," MLB said.
The Huffington Post has an interesting article attempting to unravel why some rights groups have sided with broadband Internet and mobile service providers in the fight over net neutrality. They specifically point the finger at the NAACP, who has decided that it would be bad to put restrictions on ISPs because it will stymie their efforts to build out broadband networks in urban areas.
I use Time Warner Cable for my broadband internet service. Why? Because I have no choice. TWC is the only provider available in my area. It's either TWC or no wired internet.
You may have noticed that when it comes to broadband internet service in America, you almost certainly have only one option for a service provider - if you have an option at all, that is. There are plenty of rural areas that have no service, period.
The Federal Communications Commission has sent a letter to Verizon asking the company a series of pointed questions concerning its plan to throttle unlimited data plan customers on its 4G LTE networks. The company announced earlier this month that it planned to start prioritizing customers who were not unlimited data plan customers over those who are - all in the name of network management.