Advanced Television

FCC restores net neutrality

April 26, 2024

By Colin Mann

The US Federal Communications Commission has voted to restore a national standard which it suggests will ensure the Internet is fast, open, and fair. The decision to reclassify broadband service as a Title II telecommunications service allows the FCC to protect consumers, defend national security, and advance public safety.

Through its actions, the Commission says it creates a national standard by which it can ensure that broadband Internet service is treated as an essential service. The vote also makes clear that the Commission will exercise its authority over broadband in a narrowly tailored fashion—without rate regulation, tariffing, or unbundling—to foster continued innovation and investment.

The Commission says the vote restores fundamental authority to provide effective oversight over broadband service providers, giving the Commission essential tools to:

  • Protect the Open Internet – Internet service providers will again be prohibited from blocking, throttling, or engaging in paid prioritisation of lawful content, restoring the rules that were upheld by the DC Circuit in 2016.
  • Safeguard National Security – The Commission will have the ability to revoke the authorisations of foreign-owned entities who pose a threat to national security to operate broadband networks in the US. The Commission has previously exercised this authority under section 214 of the Communications Act to revoke the operating authorities of four Chinese state-owned carriers to provide voice services in the US. Any provider without section 214 authorisation for voice services must now also cease any fixed or mobile broadband service operations in the United States.
  • Monitor Internet Service Outages – When workers cannot telework, students cannot study, or businesses cannot market their products because their internet service is out, the FCC can now play an active role.

Categories: Articles, Broadband, Business, ISP, Policy, Regulation, Telco

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