Remember in 2014 when we all got upset about Net Neutrality and Verizon? Well after months of collecting comments from citizens and corporations pretending to be citizens, there might a decision on the horizon.
Earlier rules established by the FCC were struck down in a ruling by a Federal Appeals Court. Mobile carrier Verizon brought the suit against the commission saying the FCC didn’t have the authority to establish those rules because the Internet is not considered a utility.
In May 2013, the FCC floated the possibility of classifying ISPs as Title II common carriers. That would put ISPs under the jurisdiction of the FCC and make any Net Neutrality rules it comes up with enforceable.
The May proposal also brought up the idea of Internet fast lanes and if those should be banned. That would allow ISPs to charge companies for quicker broadband speeds while potential competitors would be forced to use whatever constitutes a slower lane. In other words, if you have the money, you can get better access to customers.
As you can imagine, many ISPs (including Verizon) love the idea of being able to charge companies for quicker broadband access to their customers that are already paying for broadband. It’s double dipping from both sides of the business.
In February we will reportedly see what the FCC has decided, which will determine the future of how we get online. Fingers crossed.
➤ Get ready: The FCC says it’ll vote on net neutrality in February [Washington Post]