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Tom Wheeler’s Proposed Net Neutrality Rules

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Lawmakers wrote to the FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler,” At a time when technology businesses need certainty to innovate; this is not the time for the FCC to engage in a counterproductive effort to even further regulate the Internet.” The Federal Communications Commission or the FCC is an independent agency of the United States government, created to regulate interstate and international communications by radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories.

Last month FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler proposed rules that would replace the FCC’s open Internet order from 2010, According to Fox News, this is a measure which was struck down by a federal appeals court in January.

  
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According to The Wall Street Journal, the net neutrality rules would prohibit Internet providers from blocking or slowing down websites but allow them to make deals with content companies for preferential treatment.

According to Fox News, House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio; Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va.; Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and Conference Chair Cathy Mc Morris Rodgers, R-Wash., urged the FCC to reconsider the rules. The FCC is reported to be considering a new rule that will permit internet service providers to offer content providers a faster track to send content, reversing their earlier net neutrality position.

The FCC official said in a statement that, “The new draft clearly reflects public input the commission has received,” and that “The draft is explicit that the goal is to find the best approach to ensure the Internet remains open and prevent any practices that threaten it.”

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A possible solution to net neutrality concerns may be municipal broadband, according to Dr. Susan Crawford, a legal and technology expert at Harvard Law School.  Net neutrality is the principal that internet service providers and governments should treat all data on the  internet equally, not by discriminating or charging deferentially by user, content, site, platform, application, type of attached equipment, and modes of communication.

Tom Wheeler has faced a lot of criticism after the earlier proposal had made it appear as if he was overhauling the principle of “network neutrality,” which says Internet service providers should not be allowed to discriminate against Web traffic depending on its source.



Image credit: www.pando.com

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