Big Internet Service Providers Fear Rate Regulation

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Now that Democrats are back in charge of the White House, the issue of net neutrality and the threat of rate regulation has surfaced again. The big internet service providers (ISPs) have been trying to derail or delay confirmation of Gigi Sohn [Senior Fellow and Public Advocate at the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society] as the fifth Federal Communications Commissioner because they know that one of the first actions of the FCC under Chairman Jessica Rosenworcel will be to reintroduce Title II regulation. The lack of a threat of rate regulation has allowed big ISPs to raise rates with impunity. The public is currently complaining about inflation due to supply chain issues, but the cable companies have been busy raising broadband rates at a pace that far outstrips inflation. In the recent confirmation hearing, Gigi Sohn said she was not in favor of rate regulation. I’m positive we’ll never hear the big ISPs publicly ask that question again because it will remind people about the impact of broadband on their pocketbooks. But I think we need to brace for another gigantic lobbying effort against rate regulation – disguised as arguments against net neutrality again.

[Doug Dawson is President of CCG Consulting.]

Big ISP Fear of Rate Regulation