The FCC's plans to end net neutrality could be killed in court

midian182

Posts: 6,426   +56
Staff member

Last week saw the Federal Communications Commission’s chairman, Ajit Pai, release a plan to eliminate net neutrality protections. An FCC vote is set for December 14 when the repeal is expected to pass on a 3-2 majority. This may sound depressing, but there may still be some hope: the fact Pai’s proposal is so extreme and lacks evidence supporting the change means it could be shot down in court.

The Supreme Court says a federal agency must “examine the relevant data and articulate a satisfactory explanation for its action.” But Pai’s reasoning for killing off net neutrality is far from satisfactory. He argues that since the 2015 Title II rule was brought in by the Obama administration in 2015, investment in the industry has fallen, though filings and investment calls show an increase in internet investment over the last two years.

As reported by the New York Times, Pai will also have to explain to a court why he wants to remove the bans on blocking and throttling that have been in place since 2005. “A mere change in F.C.C. ideology isn’t enough," writes Tim Wu, the man who came up with the term “Network Neutrality.”

Additionally, as so many Americans are against the FCC’s plans—76 percent of citizens support net neutrality—the courts may be more likely to oppose Pai.

Following news that the FCC intends to tell state and local governments that they cannot impose local laws regulating broadband service, lawsuits challenging the net neutrality repeal order seem inevitable.

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p51d007

Posts: 2,643   +1,943
Why should a business, such as an ISP, which spends the money to build up their "pipe" be required to run it a certain way? It's "their" pipe, not the governments or the public's pipe.
 
Why should a business, such as an ISP, which spends the money to build up their "pipe" be required to run it a certain way? It's "their" pipe, not the governments or the public's pipe.
Let me spell this out for you. Net neutrality means the ISP wouldn't be able to block you because what you believe or say doesn't fit their agenda.
If I'm paying an internet service for access to the internet, I expect to get access for whatever I damn well please. If I'm paying for it, they have no right to tell me what I can and can not do based on their own personal agenda.
 
Why should a business, such as an ISP, which spends the money to build up their "pipe" be required to run it a certain way? It's "their" pipe, not the governments or the public's pipe.
With that line of logic, why should the government regulate electric companies? After all, these private companies built their own electrical lines, why should they be required to run it a certain way? Why not let the electrical companies charge us a premium for using their electricity to charge our phones?
 

Stark

Posts: 167   +148
Why should a business, such as an ISP, which spends the money to build up their "pipe" be required to run it a certain way? It's "their" pipe, not the governments or the public's pipe.
true, but it is your money they are taking and you have certain rights too, just like them, you may renounce yours but cannot do so on behalf of others. Also without your current rights you will be paying a hell lot of more for the same content without ISP's incurring additional cost to deliver it, and they are just that not the creators of content too.
Its like mailman charging you additional as he wishes even after you paid for the service with no guarantee to deliver it.
With Net Neutrality gone Internet landscape would be just like the current cable scenario, with Packages for each type of content/website with additional cost AFTER you paid for the bandwidth already.
ISP's instead of adding in more consumers, are trying to stifle competition (remember Google Fiber?). And there are cheap ways to do so without laying costly cable. In rural UK on the cheap copper wire with double line ISP deliver upto 16Mb/ps. You can set Wifi like network,say Mikrotik like equipment with fiber running upto central node and delivering last mile as point to point Wifi with no real limits on bandwidth/distance and better pings than copper.
Instead of innovating ISP are thinking how can we charge more for the same and reduce user choice? They also sell your data creating additional revenue stream.
So instead of Blindly following ideological arguments think simply from your or consumers point of view. And even if you take the Capitalism/free market route, that has benefit of consumer as the base philosophy and not the businesses.
Just my 2 cents.
 

Cycloid Torus

Posts: 4,689   +1,490
The net neutrality issue would be moot if there were broad competition. However, there isn't. I live in one of the most desirable and wealthy locations in the USA - and there is just ONE ISP (singular - solo) which can provide more than 20 Mbps on a regular and reliable basis. The other services talk the talk, but do not walk the walk ('blazing fast' in fact 6 Mbps; 'superior satellite' in fact 1 Mbps upload and more frequent outages; etc).

Until FCC figures out how to get some real competition into this market, I NEED net neutrality.
 
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jobeard

Posts: 14,051   +1,819
The primary manifesto of the GOP has always been least government. The current administration is obsessed to abolish all things associated with Obama; if there were a free food program with his name, they would go after that too. Sadly, two partisan groups are self-serving and neither of which imo have any desire to protect or benefit their constituents
 

wiyosaya

Posts: 5,619   +3,809
We can only hope the courts will derail the end of net neutrality, but let's not forget the Supreme Court may have the final say.
Well, then we better hope that the liberal justices are in for the long haul, and they very well might be since I am sure that they are aware of the attack on democracy and citizen's rights that the current administration is engaged in.

There is also the fact that NY State is suing the FCC for access to the well-publicized fake responses to the FCC's request for comments on net neutrality. The FCC is not cooperating, and I would not be surprised if somehow NY State finds a way to turn this lack of cooperation into obstruction of justice.

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy...n-of-net-neutrality-comment-fraud-ny-ag-says/

This article is particularly interesting since it states that dead people support the FCC's plan to repeal net neutrality - https://www.techdirt.com/articles/2...le-supported-fccs-attack-net-neutrality.shtml

The GAO is on Pai's case for this, too. Personally, with all this in the works, Pai and company must be insane to try to go through with a repeal of net neutrality at this time - at least as I see it.

Sooner or later, 45 and his administration are going to discover that they cannot just shove things down people's throats and not expect them to gag on it.
 
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Why should a business, such as an ISP, which spends the money to build up their "pipe" be required to run it a certain way? It's "their" pipe, not the governments or the public's pipe.
Because in most parts of the country, these same ISP's do not allow another competing ISP to come up. It is their pipe and they have the right to do what they want to do with it but if I don't like what is on offer I do not have any choice in this matter. They can remove net neutrality but at the same time they should allow anyone to become an ISP. Then you will see how quickly nobody would want to throttle anyone
 
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wiyosaya

Posts: 5,619   +3,809
The primary manifesto of the GOP has always been least government. The current administration is obsessed to abolish all things associated with Obama; if there were a free food program with his name, they would go after that too. Sadly, two partisan groups are self-serving and neither of which imo have any desire to protect or benefit their constituents
To them, constituents are riff-raff.
 
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Puiu

Posts: 4,312   +3,073
TechSpot Elite
Why should a business, such as an ISP, which spends the money to build up their "pipe" be required to run it a certain way? It's "their" pipe, not the governments or the public's pipe.
You logic is faulty from the start. These "pipes" were mostly built with government money to "help" the ISPs expand and offer good prices. Something that never really happened, especially on the pricing front.
The internet in the US is stupidly expensive. I can get 1 Gbps for ~11$ from multiple ISPs in Romania.
 

Wendig0

Posts: 1,156   +146
The idea that Net Neutrality was needed in the first place is ridiculous. We already had it before it passed in 2015. Since the government got involved, my bill has gone up ~130%. The problem is that the FTC isn't enforcing antitrust and anti-monopoly laws. If those laws were being enforced as written, and the ISP's were being held accountable for violating those laws, the FCC wouldn't have needed to get involved to begin with.
 
Why should a business, such as an ISP, which spends the money to build up their "pipe" be required to run it a certain way? It's "their" pipe, not the governments or the public's pipe.
Because that pipe was built off of the government framework and uses government utilities and infrastructure.
 
Why should a business, such as an ISP, which spends the money to build up their "pipe" be required to run it a certain way? It's "their" pipe, not the governments or the public's pipe.
Because a lot of that infrastructure was paid for with grants from the Government, which came from taxpayer dollars. The ISPs also pocketed a lot of the money that was given to them to upgrade the networks.
 
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imdarkbreeze

Posts: 70   +66
I'm not one to promote violence but doesn't Ajit Pai's face look like it needs to be punched?
Yes it does, and in fact perhaps a good deal more than that, as in, jailed. Clearly he is in bed with big business and we all know that content delivery is big business. There needs to be a serious investigation into the financial dealings he and the other hand picked members of his "cabinet" have had with the companies or their lobbyists that stand to gain from erasing net neutrality.

The mere fact that this point gets smothered in the media is due to the unavoidable fact that most media outlets are owned by many of the same companies that own the ISPs who stand to gain from reversing net neutrality. Anybody who claims to not be able to smell the "stink" of this whole situation is almost certainly either in on it or completely clueless as to how the whole thing works in the first place. Consider there are also a good many older folks, folks that are in the upper percentile of wealth in this nation, that couldn't care less about net neutrality because paying more for what they want to get means nothing to them.
 

imdarkbreeze

Posts: 70   +66
The GAO is on Pai's case for this, too. Personally, with all this in the works, Pai and company must be insane to try to go through with a repeal of net neutrality at this time - at least as I see it.

Sooner or later, 45 and his administration are going to discover that they cannot just shove things down people's throats and not expect them to gag on it.
Why not? Trump and the rest of the GOP have already been getting away with FAR worse than this, and nobody is doing anything to stop it. Why should they think they can't get away with it when they are getting away with anything else they want to try whether it makes any sense logically, or financially, at all?

Doing something crazy, and likely illegal, is only crazy and illegal if somebody stops you from doing it. Otherwise, you can whitewash it all as being visionary. Personally, it would not hurt my feelings at all to see every last member of the GOP, senators, representatives, lobbyists and governmental department heads, who have supported these inane agendas the current admistration and the dual branches have been pursuing, to be found rounded up and jailed for refusing to play along with what any free thinking, half decent human being can clearly see to be only beneficial to the top 5% of citizens, with absolutely no regard for the rest of the population. They should all be just as guilty as those dreaming up these schemes and net neutrality is simply another egg in the very, very rotten basket.