Archive for Wednesday, December 22, 2010

FCC adopts net neutrality rules to protect Web traffic

December 22, 2010


— Federal regulators adopted new rules Tuesday to keep the companies that control the Internet’s pipelines from restricting what their customers do online or blocking competing services, including online calling applications and Web video.

The vote by the Federal Communications Commission was 3-2 and quickly came under attack from the commission’s two Republicans, who said the rules would discourage investments in broadband. Prominent Republicans in Congress vowed to work to overturn them.

Meanwhile, critics at the other end of the political spectrum were disappointed that the new regulations don’t do enough to safeguard the fastest-growing way that people access the Internet today — through wireless devices like smart phones and tablets.

The new rules have the backing of the White House and capped a year of efforts by FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski to find a compromise. They are intended to ensure that broadband providers cannot use their control of the Internet’s on-ramps to dictate where their subscribers can go.

They will prohibit phone and cable companies from favoring or discriminating against Internet content and services that travel over their networks — including online calling services such as Skype, Internet video services such as Netflix and other applications that compete with their core businesses.

The prohibitions, known as “net neutrality,” have been at the center of a Washington policy dispute for at least five years. The issue hit home with many Internet users in 2007, when Comcast Corp. slowed traffic from an Internet file-sharing service called BitTorrent. The cable giant argued that the service, which was used to trade movies and other big files over the Internet, was clogging its network.

The new FCC rules are intended to prevent that type of behavior.

They require broadband providers to let subscribers access all legal online content, applications and services over their wired networks. They do give providers flexibility to manage data on their systems to deal with network congestion and unwanted traffic, including spam, as long as they publicly disclose how they manage the network.


bearded_gnome 3 years, 3 months ago

oh yeah, LJWorld: the headline is deceptive. this decision doesn't protect any traffic or content at all. it only empowers big government.


bearded_gnome 3 years, 3 months ago

The vote by the Federal Communications Commission was 3-2 and quickly came under attack from the commission’s two Republicans, who said the rules would discourage investments in broadband. Prominent Republicans in Congress vowed to work to overturn them.

---this has to be overturned.

first, what even gives the FCC jurisdiction here?
then, what is the problem with corporations controling what happens on the networks they operate. afterall, it is their private property. and do we really want government bureaucrats deciding what is and is not approved use on the web? do we want the whitehouse able to entirely shut down the internet at a whim?

if ABC ISP does this, the only thing they should be required to do is to publicize their bandwidth management policies. so, if you're choosing your own ISP you can select what you want. it's only called free enterprise.
if ABC ISP says that they will go-slow on Bit-torent or rapidshare or whatever, you can choose as a potential consumer. you have a choice and they make a business decision that involves their equipment.

most of all: no government involvement is best! if you own a carwash, and you decide that the deluxe A1 line gets 21gallons per sec of water, the regular line gets 15 gals/persec, and the economy line gets 10, it's your choice. you pay for the water and the cost for sewage/drainage.

if an ISP wants to restrict a particular use in its bandwidth, it may well cut its number of potential customers. that works much better than bureaucratic supervision by an eratically managed agency with variable motivations.

the FCC's decision, if left to stand, could lead to our internet being managed like it is in mainland China. ... no thanks!


Cai 3 years, 3 months ago


this ruling, in its intent, will prevent corporations from controlling the speed of the internet at any given site.

yes, the republicans in congress have said for a long time that they'd work to overturn this vote. But that vow doesn't mean that they've won anything yet.

In this case - net neutrality won. This is a good step towards corporations NOT having that kind of control.

@the person going to argue with me I didn't say america or this ruling was perfect. I said this step went in a better direction than it could have.


imastinker 3 years, 3 months ago

Did we just read different articles?


just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 3 years, 3 months ago

And the Republicans continue their scorched earth policies towards nearly everything. Even though this ruling will likely mean that corporations will determine what you can do with and see on the internet, they continue their whiny refrain about "regulations," even though they are largely non-existent or without effect.


uncleandyt 3 years, 4 months ago

Up is Down, but in language confusing enough to make most Americans indifferent. The FCC adopts loop-holey rules to protect the consolidating media giants from competition.


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