FCC Net Neutrality Vote Commented on by Verizon, Steve Wozniak, and More

Dec 21, 2010
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FCC Net Neutrality Vote Commented on by Verizon, Steve Wozniak, and More

As you might already know, the FCC Federal Communications Commission has adopted the "Open Internet Order," what some are saying is Net Neutrality - and others are saying is no such thing. The regulations adopted an Order that bans content blocking, requires transparency from ISPs, requires that network management and packet discrimination be "reasonable." Wireless broadband is exempt from all but the transparency and blocking rules. "Managed services" that are delivered over a last-mile broadband pipe will be allowed but monitored for "anti-competitive behavior." This move has been commented on by a slew of voices from all bits and pieces of life, check out a few of the more pertinent ones below. *Watch out for the Woz!

*Image from ArsTechnica.

First lets hear from Media Access Project, aka MAP:

"MAP respects and admires the work of Commissioners Michael J. Copps and Mignon Clyburn on this important issue, but MAP cannot support the watered-down, loophole-ridden option that the FCC appears to have chosen. The inadequate protections for wireless technologies are especially troublesome, as wireless services provide an onramp to the Internet for many of the nation's poor and minority citizens."

Next up is Verizon, who sent out a press release today:

Although we share with the FCC the overarching goals of an open Internet, we are deeply concerned by today's 3-2 decision.  The FCC's majority breaks with years of bipartisan communications policies that recognized that Internet innovation and investment – and the jobs they create – thrive without government intervention. There is no doubt that the policies put in place by the Clinton Administration and the Bush Administration to jumpstart innovation and the spread of broadband worked.  As a result, America's broadband and Internet marketplace is intensely competitive and an engine of economic growth, job creation and multibillion-dollar investment. Today's decision, however, unnecessarily departs from these successful policies.

After that, Timothy Karr who is a Campaign Director at Free Press and SaveTheInternet.com:

The rule is so riddled with loopholes that it's become clear that this FCC chairman crafted it with the sole purpose of winning the endorsement of AT&T and cable lobbyists, and not defending the interests of the tens of millions of Internet users. ... For the first time in history of telecommunications law the FCC has given its stamp of approval to online discrimination.

Finally, the wise wizard, your friend and mine, co-founder of Apple and the coolest Santa-looking technology voice in the world, Steve Wozniak:

I was also taught that space, and the moon, were free and open. Nobody owned them. No country owned them. I loved this concept of the purest things in the universe being unowned.

The early Internet was so accidental, it also was free and open in this sense. The Internet has become as important as anything man has ever created. But those freedoms are being chipped away. Please, I beg you, open your senses to the will of the people to keep the Internet as free as possible. Local ISP's should provide connection to the Internet but then it should be treated as though you own those wires and can choose what to do with them when and how you want to, as long as you don't destruct them. I don't want to feel that whichever content supplier had the best government connections or paid the most money determined what I can watch and for how much. This is the monopolistic approach and not representative of a truly free market in the case of today's Internet.

...

We have very few government agencies that the populace views as looking out for them, the people. The FCC is one of these agencies that is still wearing a white hat. Not only is current action on Net Neutrality one of the most important times ever for the FCC, it's probably the most momentous and watched action of any government agency in memorable times in terms of setting our perception of whether the government represents the wealthy powers or the average citizen, of whether the government is good or is bad. This decision is important far beyond the domain of the FCC itself.

Feel free to leave your own comment below with fire or ice OR contact FCC to get wild or congratulate them on their work. The internet belong to us!


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