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SMALL BUSINESS NEWS

Dec 2017

 

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FCC Restores Internet Freedom

On 14 December 2017 the FCC voted to restore Internet freedom by revoking the 2015 order.

In 2015, the FCC enacted net neutrality rules to classify Internet Service Providers (ISP) as utilities and deter them from developing discriminatory practices that would block or slow down certain content, or from receiving payment to favor other content.  This was known as “Bright Line Rules”. 

In order to protect consumers and achieve growth in the industry the current FCC ruling decided on the following:

 

-In order to prevent Internet Service Providers from throttling bandwidth the new order requires that ISPs disclose information about their practices to consumers, entrepreneurs, and the Commission, including any blocking, throttling, paid prioritization, or affiliated prioritization.

 

-In going back to the pre 2015 rules the FCC finds that transparency, combined with market forces as well as antitrust and consumer protection laws, achieve benefits comparable to those of the 2015 “bright line” rules at lower cost.

 

-This ruling also moves ISPs back to being as “Information Service Providers” rather than “Telecommunication Service Providers” where they could be managed as utilities.  Under this new rule it means that the FCC will be getting out of the business of micromanaging ISPs.

The item takes effect upon approval by the Office of Management and Budget of the new transparency rule that requires the collection of additional information from industry.

 

Sources:
FCC Restores Internet Freedom 
2015 Net Nutrality Order
1996 Telecommunications Act

By Bill Williams

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

 

  
 

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