At its core, net neutrality regulations prohibit internet service providers from engaging in “unfair” practices, including blocking websites, throttling traffic and engaging in paid prioritization, or when an internet provider favors one of site over a competitor’s or offers better access to companies that pay for it.
After Thursday’s announcement, Senator Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and congressional supporters took to Twitter to call for the Senate and the public to support his discharge petition. And in order to encourage one more Senator to join every Democrat and the one Republican who have committed to vote for net neutrality, BattleForTheNet.com launched its Red Alert campaign today.
Under net neutrality regulations, ISPs are not allowed to block or throttle – meaning slow down – websites or applications. Its expedited process and low bar to entry – only 30 senators are needed to bring a vote, and the vote generally happens quite quickly – have made it an ideal tool for Congress to undo Obama-era regulations, but the shoe is on the other foot now. When Republicans found themselves in control of the House, Senate, and White House at the start of 2017, they leveraged these favorable circumstances and adopted 15 CRA resolutions that were signed by President Trump. The FCC formally repealed the rules – which were imposed by the federal agency of a different makeup in 2015 – in December of previous year, after months of wild protests.
Even if the vote succeeds in the Senate, gaining the necessary votes or even floor time in the more ISP-cash compromised House could prove problematic.
Rather than voting for 21 Century rules to protect the internet, we’ll be taking a show vote on whether to look backwards and re-apply rules meant for the old Ma’ Bell phone system to the modern internet.
I’ve always been a supporter of a free and open internet, and in the Senate, I’ve fought to increase broadband access for our rural communities.
“The FCC thinks it can close the book on net neutrality on June 11”, wrote Free Press on Twitter after the date of net neutrality’s formal death was revealed.
Q: How does the Senate vote come into play? Bernie Sanders, of Vermont, and Angus King, of ME, and U.S. Sen.
Almost six months after the Trump FCC voted to kill net neutrality protections, we finally have an official date for the formal elimination of the rules. “This upcoming Senate vote will be our opportunity to save net neutrality and deliver the digital future that Americans deserve”. The move was pretty widely regarded as being bad, with FCC chairman Ajit Pai being singled out in particular for vitriol. President Trump would then need to sign it – unlikely, given his views on the issue. We can but dream that net neutrality isn’t dead just yet.