FCC Set to Vote on Net Neutrality Rules
As an Arvig internet customer, here's what you need to know
Written by Mark Birkholz in Business Home
The Federal Communications Commission has released a plan to roll back rules adopted in 2015 that set up the framework for net neutrality, or a “free and open” internet.
The rules were intended to prevent Internet Service Providers (ISPs) from slowing broadband speeds, blocking access or offering paid prioritization for content.
Net neutrality is the concept that all internet content and traffic should receive equal priority, and everyone should have free, fair and open access to the legal sites and content they choose, without it being slowed, blocked or manipulated.
It’s widely expected the five-member commission will vote in favor of the proposal—the Restoring Internet Freedom Order—when it meets Dec. 14.
Supporters of the rules say losing the regulations threatens the free and open internet. The FCC, and chairman Ajit Pai, argue the rules are “heavy handed” and stifle development or investment in improving internet services.
The FCC proposal includes a “transparency rule” that requires ISPs to disclose whether they allow throttling or blocking of content, and the circumstances under which they would take such action. Pai has said he hopes providers will include “no blocking” or “no throttling” agreements in their service terms.
Here’s where Arvig stands on the issue, and what you need to know as our internet customers.
+ Your internet experience will not change if net neutrality rules are rolled back. You’ll still have access to the same sites and content you always have. Arvig believes in an open internet. We do not block content from our customers, nor do we choke—slow down—the connection on high-bandwidth content, such as streaming.
+ Currently, Internet Service Providers are regulated under Title II of the Communications Act, which classifies them as common carriers. Under this classification, ISPs are subject to several regulations, including the rules governing net neutrality. The FCCs proposed reversal would mean ISPs would be regulated instead as an information service, which generally comes with fewer regulations.
+ People are concerned the reclassification will give ISPs the freedom to favor their own sites, services and content, create internet “fast lanes” for preferred services or offer paid prioritization to certain content providers. The fact is, the proposal will bring back the same rules that governed the internet for most of its existence. As our customer, you’re not going to see changes to your service from Arvig.
+ Arvig believes a free and open internet provides a level playing field for all users. It enables smaller companies to have the same online presence and exposure as larger ones. This also means you, as an internet consumer, have full access to all information available on the web.
+ This report from CNET offers answers to questions about the proposal.
+ More than 200 companies—including Twitter and Pinterest—recently signed a letter urging the FCC not to roll back net neutrality rules.