The US House of Representatives on Tuesday voted to overturn a ruling that would have forced Internet service providers to obtain consent before selling your web browsing history to third parties for the purpose of targeted advertising.
Much like the Senate last week, the House this week narrowly voted along partisan lines (215 to 205) to scrap the proposed FCC rules.
The bill is now destined for President Trump’s desk where the White House has already said he strongly supports repealing the FCC rules which haven’t yet gone into effect. In other words, there’s absolutely no reason to think Trump won’t sign it and effectively kill what Deadline describes as one of former FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler’s most hard-fought initiatives.
Current FCC boss Ajit Pai said in a statement that Congress has appropriately passed a resolution to reject privacy regulations designed to benefit one group of favored companies over another group of disfavored companies.
Those against the FCC ruling argue that it would have placed an unfair burden on ISPs while leaving sites like Google and Facebook free to collect and sell user data. Those that supported the ruling, like policy fellow Dallas Harris from privacy advocacy group Public Knowledge, say that without them, there will be no strong federal protection for consumers when it comes to how their ISP can use their information.
Pai said that moving forward, he wants the American people to know that the FCC will work with the FTC to ensure that consumers’ online privacy is protected though a consistent and comprehensive framework. In his opinion, the best way to achieve that result would be to return jurisdiction over broadband providers’ privacy practices to the FTC.
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