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U.S. Democrats Propose Legislation To Ban Internet Fast Lanes 190

Posted by Soulskill
from the good-luck-with-that dept.
An anonymous reader writes: A proposal from Democrats in the U.S. House and Senate would require the FCC to stop ISPs from creating "internet fast lanes." Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) said, "Americans are speaking loud and clear. They want an Internet that is a platform for free expression and innovation, where the best ideas and services can reach consumers based on merit rather than based on a financial relationship with a broadband provider." Representative Doris Matsui (D-CA) added, "A free and open Internet is essential for consumers. Our country cannot afford 'pay-for-play' schemes that divide our Internet into tiers based on who has the deepest pockets." Unfortunately, this is only half a solution — the bill doesn't actually add to the FCC's authority. It only requires them to use the authority they currently have, which is questionable at best.
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U.S. Democrats Propose Legislation To Ban Internet Fast Lanes

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  • Just do SOMETHING (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Brennan Pratt (3614719) on Tuesday June 17, 2014 @02:35PM (#47257057)
    The Republican bill that would remove ISPs from FCC regulation would allow states to regulate. It would make rent seeking a lot more difficult for ISPs. This bill would do the obvious thing that the Fourth Branch has failed to do. It's a sign that the FCC is entirely pointless if Congress has to order it to do every little thing. This wouldn't address the paid prioritization problem, but seems like it would give consumers more rights against ISPs in re traffic shaping, etc.
  • Re:Just do SOMETHING (Score:4, Interesting)

    by arth1 (260657) on Tuesday June 17, 2014 @03:00PM (#47257317) Homepage Journal

    The Republican bill that would remove ISPs from FCC regulation would allow states to regulate.

    That would be useless, given that most internet traffic is interstate or international. It's enough that one hop is in a state that hasn't forbidden slow lanes, and it's defeated.

  • Re:Just do SOMETHING (Score:5, Interesting)

    by thule (9041) on Tuesday June 17, 2014 @03:36PM (#47257715) Homepage

    Did I say I didn't want *any* oversight? I'm not an anarchist. I just want it easier. End exclusive franchises. Open things up. This has to happen at the local level. So, yes, let the *local* voters decide.

    BTW, many people already have microwave transmitters in their house. It's called a cell phone. Also, WiFi is microwave. The FCC allows license free use of some frequencies. For all you know, you may already have a dish pointed at your house.

  • Re:Just do SOMETHING (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rahvin112 (446269) on Tuesday June 17, 2014 @05:47PM (#47258619)

    If you think handing regulation to state government will result in less corruption and a fairer playing field you have no experience with or understanding of state government. Local government is better for some things but state governments are historically and currently the easiest for those with deep pockets to buy regulations and laws they want. I've got dozens of examples in my own state and you could undoubtedly find dozens in your own. Such things do occasionally make the national press such as the Texas car dealers association getting the state of Texas to ban the direct sale of Tesla cars. A key example of an entrenched interest with deep pockets being able to directly control the state government into passing patently anti-competition laws.

    Although I don't like the new FCC run by lobbyists and prefer the version from the 50's that was run by engineers. They are at least less corruptible than local politics. If FCC duties are handed to the states we'll have state legislatures writing laws that favor local large businesses in a heart beat. We already have dozens of incumbent written state laws around the nation baring local governments from wiring themselves when the incumbent refuses. I can't even imagine the horror state governments would cause.

  • Re:Just do SOMETHING (Score:5, Interesting)

    by visualight (468005) on Tuesday June 17, 2014 @08:18PM (#47259589) Homepage

    For a moment, let go of the myth that inefficient government is some kind of natural law and not propaganda, and read this:
    http://www.muninetworks.org/co... [muninetworks.org]

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