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A U.S. Appeals Court just invalidated the FCC's net neutrality rules that would've made it illegal for telecom companies to favor certain types of traffic over others. This basically opens the door for companies like Verizon and Time Warner to cut special deals with websites to serve up their content faster.
Of course, the idea of giving preferential treatment to websites willing to pay for it means that smaller websites stand to lose out. Imagine the worst case scenario, where you literally have to pay an extra fee to get access to the websites you like. It's possible! At least the Appeals Court ruling on Verizon v. FCC states that telecom companies have to tell subscribers which sites they're favoring.
This is really bad. Why would Federal Court do this? Are their backs being scratched somehow??
This is a dark day for our freedom on the internet.
The D.C. Circuit has correctly held that 'Section 706 . . . vests [the Commission] with affirmative authority to enact measures encouraging the deployment of broadband infrastructure' and therefore may 'promulgate rules governing broadband providers' treatment of Internet traffic.' I am committed to maintaining our networks as engines for economic growth, test beds for innovative services and products, and channels for all forms of speech protected by the First Amendment. We will consider all available
options, including those for appeal, to ensure that these networks on which the Internet depends continue to provide a free and open platform for innovation and expression, and operate in the interest of all Americans.
Given that the Commission has chosen to classify broadband providers in a manner that exempts them from treatment as common carriers, the Communications Act expressly prohibits the Commission from nonetheless regulating them as such. Because the Commission has failed to establish that the anti-discrimination and anti-blocking rules do not impose per se common carrier obligations, we vacate those portions of the Open Internet Order.