Dear Aunt Sadie, Please Step Back From The Net Neutrality Ledge

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[Commentary]  Once again, the [open Internet] rules are being rewritten.  Once again, the pitchforks and torches are in hand.  And once again, the only real and effective solution is being ignored:  legislation from Congress, versions of which have been floating around Capitol Hill for almost a decade. 

It should be clear to everyone by now that leaving the specifics of that remedy to the discretion of successive chairmen of the Federal Communications Commission is an untenable solution. The courts have now ruled that Congress left the classification of ISPs to the discretion of the Commission, meaning that whatever you think of the 2010, 2015, or 2017 Open Internet orders, the next FCC Chairman will have her or his own view, and this cycle of chaos will start anew, perhaps indefinitely. Chairman Pai’s proposal is, notably, the sixth reversal of policy in the last decade. Whatever outcome you are hoping for, in other words, won’t last long even if you get it. That’s why I continue to urge Aunt Sadie and everyone else who will listen to bring an end to this wasteful debate by demanding that Congress decide once and for all how broadband Internet should be regulated, and by whom.

[Larry Downes is the Project Director at Georgetown Center for Business and Public Policy.]


Dear Aunt Sadie, Please Step Back From The Net Neutrality Ledge