FCC Chairman Ajit Pai reveals Net Neutrality repeal plan, vote on Dec. 14

Posted:
in General Discussion edited November 2017
As predicted, the Federal Communications Commission has submitted its plan to return power to internet service providers over the terms of what content will be served to users, and to repeal previous net neutrality protections applied to customers and businesses.




FCC Chairman Ajit Pai says that his proposal cuts back on government regulation, and will regulation mostly up to the providers. The proposal basically strips away requirements applied to the carriers by the government, and will only hold them responsible for what promises companies like AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Comcast and others make to customers, rather than provide any best -- or required -- practices.

"For almost twenty years, the Internet thrived under the light-touch regulatory approach established by President Clinton and a Republican Congress," said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. "This bipartisan framework led the private sector to invest $1.5 trillion building communications networks throughout the United States. And it gave us an Internet economy that became the envy of the world"

"But in 2015, the prior FCC bowed to pressure from President Obama. On a party-line vote, it imposed heavy-handed, utility-style regulations upon the Internet," added Pai. "That decision was a mistake. It's depressed investment in building and expanding broadband networks and deterred innovation."

The new proposal suggests that the FCC remove the classification of internet service providers as a common carrier, stripping the legal authority of the agency to regulate provider's behavior beyond breaking promises to customers.

"Under my proposal, the federal government will stop micromanaging the internet," Pai said in a statement. "Instead, the FCC would simply require internet service providers to be transparent about their practices so that consumers can buy the service plan that's best for them and entrepreneurs and other small businesses can have the technical information they need to innovate."

Beyond the stripping of the common carrier classification, the proposal also removes most of the supervisory element from the FCC. Instead, the Federal Trade Commission will have the power to sue companies that do not conform to statements that the carriers themselves have made to the public.

In making the proposal, Chairman Pai rejected wide calls from fellow commissioners, the public, and companies that do not provide internet service to maintain net neutrality regulations. While the majority of the 22 million comments received by the FCC during a public comment period were form letter and spam, one analysis found that over 98 percent of the comments actually written independently were in favor of net neutrality as executed in 2015.

"In just two days, many of us will join friends and family in celebrating the spirit of Thanksgiving. But as we learned today, the FCC majority is about to deliver a cornucopia full of rotten fruit, stale grains, and wilted flowers topped off with a plate full of burnt turkey," said Commissioner Mignon Clyburn. "Their Destroying Internet Freedom Order would dismantle net neutrality as we know it by giving the green light to our nation's largest broadband providers to engage in anti-consumer practices, including blocking, slowing down traffic, and paid prioritization of online applications and services."

The draft order entitled "Restoring Internet Freedom" was submitted to the FCC commissioners on Tuesday. The text will be made publicly available on Wednesday.

The proposal will likely get the green light on Dec. 14, with a 3-2 vote along expected party lines.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 42
    hattighattig Posts: 832member
    Bad luck America.

    Services are going to be tiered to hell and back as soon as they can do that.

    Oh, I'm sure the dross will still be available for all to see, and 'approved content' will be on the cheaper tiers as well.

    But most service providers exist in localised monopolies, so without competition they will gauge you if you want streaming services they don't provide themselves, or news sources that aren't favoured, and so on. Oh, you want to do online gaming? That's only available on the $100pm tier.
    lostkiwiclemynx
  • Reply 2 of 42
    Goodbye internet as we’ve come to know it and Hello to pay-as-you-go (or as your speed noticeably decreases to get it back). No two ways about it.  :(
    clemynx
  • Reply 3 of 42
    It is not too late to stop this and even if it goes through it will be possible to reverse it. We need to fight for this.

    Contact your congressman immediately.

    And, if you are able to drop your terrestrial land lines in favor of cellular Internet hot spots, those are indeed regulated as common carriers and will continue to be.

    That is not a perfect fix, of course.  Even if you can guarantee net neutrality for  yourself,  competitive services may be rendered nonviable by the market if the neutrality isn’t available to all.  But it’s better than the alternative of doing nothing. 
    bshankdhawkins541iqatedo
  • Reply 4 of 42
    hattig said:
    Bad luck America.

    Services are going to be tiered to hell and back as soon as they can do that.

    Oh, I'm sure the dross will still be available for all to see, and 'approved content' will be on the cheaper tiers as well.

    But most service providers exist in localised monopolies, so without competition they will gauge you if you want streaming services they don't provide themselves, or news sources that aren't favoured, and so on. Oh, you want to do online gaming? That's only available on the $100pm tier.
    Services are already tiered. I pay extra for faster connectivity. If I want to lower my monthly bill, I can choose a lower plan. 

    Let's be clear: Prior to this decision, ISPs were allowed to do exactly what you describe, but they didn't. If an ISP does, you just switch ISPs. 
  • Reply 5 of 42
    While I agree with the concept of net neutrality, the prior FCC board took their authority too far when they declared that Internet access is a right and people should pay extra taxes on their Internet service to pay for those who can't afford Internet service. 
    macseeker
  • Reply 6 of 42
    Good. We don't need the government involved in managing the Internet. Everyone worried about this wrecking the Internet are seeing imaginary monsters in the dark. 
    swaldmail
  • Reply 7 of 42
    Time for local governments to provide their own inexpensive ISP that follows net neutrality rules. Private ISPs can either choose to innovate and compete or go out of business. 
    bshanktoddzrxanantksundaram
  • Reply 8 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,035member
    "But in 2015, the prior FCC bowed to pressure from President Obama. On a party-line vote, it imposed heavy-handed, utility-style regulations upon the Internet," added Pai. "That decision was a mistake. It's depressed investment in building and expanding broadband networks and deterred innovation."
    What a joke!  The internet was built on government (military) investment and the service providers have reaped the rewards of the government selling off the fruits of that investment at a fraction of the cost.  And it's the tech companies + academia, not the ISPs, who do the innovating.  The only thing they've done is help build out the infrastructure, and even then, with heavy incentives and funding from the government in many cases.

    Deeming internet access as an essential service/utility, like electricity, clean water, etc, without prioritization of service, is the right thing to do for society.  Otherwise you're just setting things up to have a large portion of the population which is left behind.  But I guess seeing what Trump has done with Puerto Rico, I shouldn't be surprised that he's willing to leave people behind.  Just please stop the rhetoric about trying to make things better and admit that it's all about lining the pockets of your business partners.
    YoSamCapsFanbshankanantksundaramLordeHawklostkiwiOferclemynx
  • Reply 9 of 42
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,967administrator
    kerpow said:
    Good. We don't need the government involved in managing the Internet. Everyone worried about this wrecking the Internet are seeing imaginary monsters in the dark. 
    Apple itself disagrees with you. So does every other business that serves its content on the internet.

    Here's a scenario for you. News Channel X, that panders to blind, left-handed dentists, covers AT&T favoritism for one-eyed phlebotomists. AT&T doesn't like it.

    So, it decides to strangle the bandwidth for News Channel X, just because it can. No more video from News Channel X if you're an AT&T customer, because there just aren't enough bits available. So much for getting the news out equitably.

    Or, say, AT&T doesn't want Skype on the iPhone -- so it blocks it. Wait -- this actually happened with the iPhone. For two years.

    Or, Verizon doesn't want a contactless payment service on phones it provides access to because it's working on its own system, so it blocks them -- this happened too.
    edited November 2017 boogerman2000stompyboltsfan17newtonrjauxiorepressthisfrankiebshankfastasleepdhawkins541
  • Reply 10 of 42
    tylersdad said:
    hattig said:
    Bad luck America.

    Services are going to be tiered to hell and back as soon as they can do that.

    Oh, I'm sure the dross will still be available for all to see, and 'approved content' will be on the cheaper tiers as well.

    But most service providers exist in localised monopolies, so without competition they will gauge you if you want streaming services they don't provide themselves, or news sources that aren't favoured, and so on. Oh, you want to do online gaming? That's only available on the $100pm tier.
    Services are already tiered. I pay extra for faster connectivity. If I want to lower my monthly bill, I can choose a lower plan. 

    Let's be clear: Prior to this decision, ISPs were allowed to do exactly what you describe, but they didn't. If an ISP does, you just switch ISPs. 
    From you're comment, it's pretty clear you don't understand the subject matter.  Your speed may be tiered but your traffic is not.  That's what you're missing. 
    Example: Tylersdad has a 25 Mbps (Tier 1) connection and pays $50/month.  For $10 more per month, he can get a 50 Mbps (Tier 2) connection. For $20 more than Tier 2 he can get 75 Mbps for $80 per month.  That's tiered service.  That has nothing to do with net neutrality.  
    Here's what the repeal of net neutrality can get you:
    Tylersdad likes to stream movies to his Apple TV,  likes to watch Netflix on his iPad, and game through his Steam account on his iMac.  Under net neutrality, no matter what he's doing he gets the same speed at the same cost.  Without net neutrality, ISP can charge for tiered access to traffic -different from tiered service- based on sites, type of traffic, or any other parameter they decide.  So in this new paradigm, if Tylersdad wants to stream movies on his Apple TV he has to pay $50 bucks for basic internet package (BIP) + $15 for Tier 1 streaming.  Tier 1 covers streaming to ATV, Roku, Fire Sticks, etc.  but does not include Netflix or Amazon Prime streaming.  For that you need to move up to Tier 2 streaming which is $25 extra.  Tylersdad likes Steam.  Can't stream things like Steam or Youtube on rinky dink Tier 2 though.  You gotta step up to Tier 3 Popular Traffic for an extra $50 per month.  Oh, and certain sites can only be accessed from Tier 3 traffic.  Sites like Apple.com or Appleinsider.com.  Mind you that's on top of your basic internet charge.

    To be fair, my example is a bit of hyperbole but nothing in it is out of the realm of possibility without net neutrality. Again, net neutrality is about your traffic, not your overall speed.
    Here's a visual representation.

    edited November 2017 repressthisfrankiebshankanantksundaramfastasleepdhawkins541LordeHawkjony0lostkiwispace2001
  • Reply 11 of 42
    kerpow said:
    Good. We don't need the government involved in managing the Internet. Everyone worried about this wrecking the Internet are seeing imaginary monsters in the dark. 
    Apple itself disagrees with you. So does every other business that serves its content on the internet.

    Here's a scenario for you. News Channel X, that panders to blind, left-handed dentists, covers AT&T favoritism for one-eyed phlebotomists. AT&T doesn't like it.

    So, it decides to strangle the bandwidth for News Channel X, just because it can. No more video from News Channel X if you're an AT&T customer, because there just aren't enough bits available. So much for getting the news out equitably.

    Or, say, AT&T doesn't want Skype on the iPhone -- so it blocks it. Wait -- this actually happened with the iPhone. For two years.

    Or, Verizon doesn't want a contactless payment service on phones it provides access too, so it blocks them -- this happened too.
    I think its going to be fine and look forward to watching the companies who try the things you've described fail.
  • Reply 12 of 42
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,967administrator
    kerpow said:
    kerpow said:
    Good. We don't need the government involved in managing the Internet. Everyone worried about this wrecking the Internet are seeing imaginary monsters in the dark. 
    Apple itself disagrees with you. So does every other business that serves its content on the internet.

    Here's a scenario for you. News Channel X, that panders to blind, left-handed dentists, covers AT&T favoritism for one-eyed phlebotomists. AT&T doesn't like it.

    So, it decides to strangle the bandwidth for News Channel X, just because it can. No more video from News Channel X if you're an AT&T customer, because there just aren't enough bits available. So much for getting the news out equitably.

    Or, say, AT&T doesn't want Skype on the iPhone -- so it blocks it. Wait -- this actually happened with the iPhone. For two years.

    Or, Verizon doesn't want a contactless payment service on phones it provides access too, so it blocks them -- this happened too.
    I think its going to be fine and look forward to watching the companies who try the things you've described fail.
    Why would they? There's nothing to stop them.
    repressthisbshanklostkiwiOferclemynx
  • Reply 13 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,035member
    kerpow said:
    kerpow said:
    Good. We don't need the government involved in managing the Internet. Everyone worried about this wrecking the Internet are seeing imaginary monsters in the dark. 
    Apple itself disagrees with you. So does every other business that serves its content on the internet.

    Here's a scenario for you. News Channel X, that panders to blind, left-handed dentists, covers AT&T favoritism for one-eyed phlebotomists. AT&T doesn't like it.

    So, it decides to strangle the bandwidth for News Channel X, just because it can. No more video from News Channel X if you're an AT&T customer, because there just aren't enough bits available. So much for getting the news out equitably.

    Or, say, AT&T doesn't want Skype on the iPhone -- so it blocks it. Wait -- this actually happened with the iPhone. For two years.

    Or, Verizon doesn't want a contactless payment service on phones it provides access too, so it blocks them -- this happened too.
    I think its going to be fine and look forward to watching the companies who try the things you've described fail.
    That's assuming the vast majority of customers even know it's happening to them or have the power to do much about it if they do since the information source or service could be squeezed out of business by such practices.  There's a reason why the government often needs to get involved with monopolistic business practices.
    edited November 2017 lostkiwiOfer
  • Reply 14 of 42
    It is not too late to stop this and even if it goes through it will be possible to reverse it. We need to fight for this.

    Contact your congressman immediately.

    And, if you are able to drop your terrestrial land lines in favor of cellular Internet hot spots, those are indeed regulated as common carriers and will continue to be.

    That is not a perfect fix, of course.  Even if you can guarantee net neutrality for  yourself,  competitive services may be rendered nonviable by the market if the neutrality isn’t available to all.  But it’s better than the alternative of doing nothing. 
    LOL. Ridiculous. “Net Neutrality” amounts to subsidizing Internet providers. That’s not the function of the Federal government and that kind of corporatist policy distorts the value of consumer Internet services and is flat out anti-competitive. Every industry currently receiving protectionist treatment needs to face up to market based pressures and succeed or fail based on what they can provide for customers, not because of whose pocket is being lined in Washington. This kind of corruption needs to be burned to the ground.
    edited November 2017
  • Reply 15 of 42
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,967administrator
    It is not too late to stop this and even if it goes through it will be possible to reverse it. We need to fight for this.

    Contact your congressman immediately.

    And, if you are able to drop your terrestrial land lines in favor of cellular Internet hot spots, those are indeed regulated as common carriers and will continue to be.

    That is not a perfect fix, of course.  Even if you can guarantee net neutrality for  yourself,  competitive services may be rendered nonviable by the market if the neutrality isn’t available to all.  But it’s better than the alternative of doing nothing. 
    LOL. Ridiculous. “Net Neutrality” amounts to subsidizing Internet providers. That’s not the function of the Federal government and that kind of corporatist policy distorts the value of consumer Internet services and is flat out anti-competitive. Every industry currently receiving protectionist treatment needs to face up to market based pressures and succeed or fail based on what they can provide for customers, not because of whose pocket is being lined in Washington. This kind of corruption needs to be burned to the ground.
    For: The carriers, the FCC.

    Against: Apple, eBay, Netflix, Amazon, nearly every major news network including CNN and Fox.

    Revoking net neutrality protections subsidizes internet providers. It just changes who pays the bill, though, from tax revenue to us directly in larger measure.
    edited November 2017 frankiefastasleeplostkiwiOfer
  • Reply 16 of 42
    kerpow said:

    I think its going to be fine and look forward to watching the companies who try the things you've described fail.
    I’m all for small and limited government, and there are elements of net neutrality I don’t like, but in the absence of a replacement it needs to stay. We cannot have content in the hands of ISPs unless we also want the content to become profit driven.

    Changes to the Internet, based on profit motivation, will likely be brought about in small doses, things that don’t seem too bad, or are at least tolerably bad. Then there will be another step. Rinse and repeat. And like any clever business tactic, by the time the changes have reached a level of ‘Oh wait, this sucks’, things will have already reached a level of near irreversibility. And the average person won’t really care anyway because they’ve become accustomed to it.

    This approach happens endlessly in business, and government, and politics, and it happens because people are selfish and most people do things for themselves and will happily exploit others if they can. Very few people are there to serve others and do what’s best for them when it means a pay check is at stake.

    So for something that is a national and even global service, to have decisions in hands of people who will take advantage of customers at every opportunity is a disastrous idea. The internet will change, guaranteed. If you’re saying you want these changes then fine, but it’s naive to think everything’s going to stay the same.
    frankiebshankapple jockeylostkiwiOfer
  • Reply 17 of 42
    tylersdad said:

    .... you just switch ISPs. 
    Ha ha ha...

    That's really funny.
    edited November 2017 fastasleepLordeHawklostkiwimuthuk_vanalingamOferclemynx
  • Reply 18 of 42
    I can’t believe anyone (except the isp’s) would favour this. Here is a definition of Net Neutrality from wikipedia:

    Net neutrality is the principle that Internet service providers and governments regulating most of the Internet must treat all data on the Internet the same, and not discriminate or charge differently by user, content, website, platform, application, type of attached equipment, or method of communication. For instance, under these principles, internet service providers are unable to intentionally block, slow down or charge money for specific websites and online content.

    Why would you ever want your ISP to be able to intentionally block, slow down or charge money for specific websites and online content?

    Are some people against goverment management for the sake of the principle?
    muthuk_vanalingamOfer
  • Reply 19 of 42
    kerpow said:
    Good. We don't need the government involved in managing the Internet. Everyone worried about this wrecking the Internet are seeing imaginary monsters in the dark. 
    But we do! If the government doesn't manage it, some big companies will. The difference is that the first option is (hopefully) for the benefit of the people living in the country, whereas the latter will benefit only the ISP's themselves.

    tylersdad said:
    Let's be clear: Prior to this decision, ISPs were allowed to do exactly what you describe, but they didn't.
    If the ISP's didn't violate Net Neutrality prior to this regulation, why does it need removal now?

    tylersdad said:
    If an ISP does, you just switch ISPs.
    And if all the ISP's do?
    muthuk_vanalingamOferclemynx
  • Reply 20 of 42
    Yes, let me switch from charter internet to oh that's right no one cause their isn't another option yet. Still waiting for a local company that's trying to lay fiber around my town to hopefully give us a 2nd viable option but will probably not be until this nut job and his big f ING cup are out of office at this rate. 
    LordeHawkSpamSandwichOfer
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