FCC approves plan to require broadband 'nutrition labels'

Posted:
in General Discussion
The Federal Communications Commission has voted to move forward with a plan to require broadband providers to offer "nutrition labels" containing critical information for consumers as soon as 2022.

FCC building
FCC building


On Thursday, the FCC unanimously approved the proposal, which would create new rules requiring broadband providers to offer labels disclosing an internet plan's pricing, data allowances, and throttling practices, as well as information on introductory prices and future price hikes.

The aim of the proposal is to increase transparency for consumers and boost competition in the marketplace.

"Access to accurate, simple-to-understand information about broadband internet access services helps consumers make informed choices and is central to a well-functioning marketplace that encourages competition, innovation, low prices, and high-quality service," the FCC wrote in a press release.

The proposal is one part of the FCC's plan to act on an executive order signed by President Joe Biden in July 2021. That order required the FCC to implement new regulations aimed at increasing consumer choice and bolstering broadband service quality.

The "nutrition labels" in question are based on voluntary disclosures approved by the FCC in 2016. Under the new rules, which could go into effect as soon as the latter half of 2022, broadband providers would be required to offer the information.

As part of the action on Thursday, the FCC is seeking comments on how consumers evaluate broadband plans, whether the labels will help consumers with the broadband shopping process, whether the 2016 labels should be updated, and where the labels should be displayed.

The NCTA, a trade group representing broadband providers, said it looks forward to working with the FCC on implementing the new labels. In a statement, the NCTA said that "cable operators are committed to providing consumers with relevant information about broadband services."

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 4

    The NCTA, a trade group representing broadband providers, said it looks forward to working with the FCC on implementing the new labels. In a statement, the NCTA said that "cable operators are committed to providing consumers with relevant information about broadband services."

    Read on AppleInsider
    Hogwash. Baloney. Lying through their teeth.

    How about the FCC require on the nutrition label the cost of the plan without any promotional or bundling discounts, and the length of those discounts.
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 2 of 4
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 3,647member

    The NCTA, a trade group representing broadband providers, said it looks forward to working with the FCC on implementing the new labels. In a statement, the NCTA said that "cable operators are committed to providing consumers with relevant information about broadband services."

    Read on AppleInsider
    Hogwash. Baloney. Lying through their teeth.

    How about the FCC require on the nutrition label the cost of the plan without any promotional or bundling discounts, and the length of those discounts.
    Exactly. If the NCTA really wanted to do this they would have done it already without the FCC forcing them to.

    We have Comcast (the only service available to us.) When I last tried to check on plan options it was impossible to determine what was available to current subscribers vs new subscribers, what required a bundle, what was an introductory rate and what the true plan rate was. Is it too much to ask for clear information?
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 3 of 4
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    MplsP said:

    The NCTA, a trade group representing broadband providers, said it looks forward to working with the FCC on implementing the new labels. In a statement, the NCTA said that "cable operators are committed to providing consumers with relevant information about broadband services."

    Read on AppleInsider
    Hogwash. Baloney. Lying through their teeth.

    How about the FCC require on the nutrition label the cost of the plan without any promotional or bundling discounts, and the length of those discounts.
    Exactly. If the NCTA really wanted to do this they would have done it already without the FCC forcing them to.

    We have Comcast (the only service available to us.) When I last tried to check on plan options it was impossible to determine what was available to current subscribers vs new subscribers, what required a bundle, what was an introductory rate and what the true plan rate was. Is it too much to ask for clear information?

    With Comcast those prices are well hidden.  The magic word to release them is "Verizon".  But, unfortunately, not everybody has the option of switching.

    When my one-year introductory rate at Comcast was about to expire I called them and was told my cost would nearly double the next month on a regular rate.  They swore up an down that there was no alternative -- until I mentioned Verizon.  Then they switched me to another department who renewed that $39.99 introductory rate for another year.  Right now I'm well into the third year of that one-year introductory rate.

    I'm set up so that switching carriers involves a phone call (well, two calls:  One to order service and one to cancel the old service) and then plugging 'the other' ethernet cable into my modem.
  • Reply 4 of 4
    omasouomasou Posts: 324member
    MplsP said:

    The NCTA, a trade group representing broadband providers, said it looks forward to working with the FCC on implementing the new labels. In a statement, the NCTA said that "cable operators are committed to providing consumers with relevant information about broadband services."

    Read on AppleInsider
    Hogwash. Baloney. Lying through their teeth.

    How about the FCC require on the nutrition label the cost of the plan without any promotional or bundling discounts, and the length of those discounts.
    Exactly. If the NCTA really wanted to do this they would have done it already without the FCC forcing them to.

    We have Comcast (the only service available to us.) When I last tried to check on plan options it was impossible to determine what was available to current subscribers vs new subscribers, what required a bundle, what was an introductory rate and what the true plan rate was. Is it too much to ask for clear information?

    With Comcast those prices are well hidden.  The magic word to release them is "Verizon".  But, unfortunately, not everybody has the option of switching.

    When my one-year introductory rate at Comcast was about to expire I called them and was told my cost would nearly double the next month on a regular rate.  They swore up an down that there was no alternative -- until I mentioned Verizon.  Then they switched me to another department who renewed that $39.99 introductory rate for another year.  Right now I'm well into the third year of that one-year introductory rate.

    I'm set up so that switching carriers involves a phone call (well, two calls:  One to order service and one to cancel the old service) and then plugging 'the other' ethernet cable into my modem.
     Verizon obfuscates pricing in a very similar manner.
    edited February 19
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