Here’s What Comes Next in the Fight to Save Net Neutrality


Source: Wired
Author: Klint Finley
Coverage Type: reporting
Location:
Federal Communications Commission (FCC), 445 12th Street SW, Washington, DC, 20554, United States

Once Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai’s notice of proposed rulemaking is approved, which is likely to happen at the FCC’s open meeting May 18, the public will have 60 days to file comments. Then people will have another 30 days to respond to the comments. The FCC’s staff will then have to turn all that feedback into a final order that commissioners will vote on. That process could take months, but based on Pai’s eagerness to re-reclassify broadband providers, you can expect action on that sooner than later.

Senior FCC officials told reporters during a press call that they won’t necessarily be swayed by public opinion. The call for comments is not, they said, a public opinion poll. Fair enough: Sometimes federal agencies have to make unpopular decisions. And if the FCC does vote to scrap net neutrality, it could be a very unpopular decision indeed. Despite growing polarization, a poll conducted by the University of Delaware found that the majority of both Democratic and Republican voters support some form of net neutrality protections.

Net neutrality advocates may have better luck in court than the FCC. Federal agencies must explain sudden policy reversals. If the courts decide that the FCC has acted in an arbitrary or capricious manner, the Title II reversal could be struck down. FCC staff, however, say they are confident that won’t happen. Pai has offered up data suggesting that companies are spending less money building and maintaining their broadband networks as a result of the Title II reclassification, which they believe should be enough to satisfy any legal challenge. Whether those controversial investment stats will be enough to sway the courts remains to be seen.

Comments

Democracy operates on public opinion polls. The Chairman has already inappropriately influenced these opinion polls by misleading the public about the 2015 order. There will be an attempt by Chairman Pai to rollback the 2015 order regardless of the public comments. This fact does not make these unimportant.

EVERY SUPPORTER OF TITLE II RULES MUST CONTACT THEIR CONGRESSPEOPLE TOO!

CurtisNeeley on May 1, 2017 - 7:30am.

Ratings

Recommendation:
2
Informative:
0
Accuracy:
0

Login to rate this headline.