wnol.info January 19 2018

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai Urges ISPs to Comply With Open Internet Principles

January 19 2018, 05:35 | Alonzo Simpson

But now Pai reportedly wants to ISPs to voluntarily agree to maintain an open internet, three sources briefed on the meeting told Reuters on Thursday. And the former FCC chairman Tom Wheeler, has previously warned commissioners against removing the net neutrality rules. These rules now prevent broadband providers from blocking websites, throttling internet connections for subscribers and engaging in paid prioritization deals. "That would allow the FTC to go after violators for deceptive or unfair trade practices".

Let's get ready to rumble, again, over net neutrality.

This was largely no surprise, given the stance that both the current administration and the newly appointed head of the FCC have adopted.

The FTC argues in its letter to the Ninth Circuit that because "the FCC privacy rules never became effective and are now null and void, they can not mitigate the regulatory gap discussed by the FTC in its petition".

The Federal Communications Commission rules - which were approved past year and had not even gone into effect yet - were meant to restrain what service providers could do with their customers' browsing habits, location data, Social Security numbers, and other data.

The chairs concluded, "Put simply, the Chicken Little-like reaction doesn't make any sense, particularly when compared with the virtual silence when the FCC stripped away existing privacy protections in 2015". "Mine was just this constant, 'Oh my God, what are you going to do to protect us?'"

Pai and Republican commissioner Michael O'Rielly now hold a 2-1 majority at the agency.

"Net neutrality proponents too easily dismiss antitrust", Ohlhausen wrote. "People from across the political spectrum overwhelmingly want a free and open internet and don't want their internet service provider to collect and sell the intimate details of their online activity". A federal appeals court panel upheld the rules previous year, but further appeals continue.

Congressional Republicans invoked the Congressional Review Act to repeal the rules, which passed during the tail end of President Barack Obama's tenure. And the tactics used could become more aggressive and invasive.

Because of this, the rule arbitrarily treated ISPs differently from the rest of the internet. And it will continue to do so until the misguided Title II reclassification decision is rescinded, at which time the FTC will resume regulating consumer broadband privacy, just as it has done since the internet was created decades ago. You can also pay to use a virtual private network, which funnels your Internet traffic through a secure connection that your provider can't see into. Before the rules were implemented, interconnection disputes were harming the quality of video streaming and other Internet services, but those disputes were quickly resolved once the complaint process was in place. But the FCC reversed its zero-rating findings under Pai. The rule was supposed to take effect in 2014, but before it could, the Senate, the House and now Trump repealed it.

The FTC has asked the court to reconsider that ruling; AT&T opposes that request.

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