An emerging Federal Communications Commission plan to give the agency more authority to regulate traffic on broadband Internet networks is shaping up as the classic Washington compromise. No one loves the idea, and everyone is sure it will wind up in court.
The broadband providers are concerned because the plan would expand the agency’s ability to regulate them by classifying the providers under the part of telecommunications law, Title II, that covers common carriers, or public utilities. They would prefer to keep broadband as a more lightly regulated information service.

The plan being developed by FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler would treat broadband as two distinct services, the retail service, where consumers pay providers for Internet access, and the back end, where the providers pick up content for distribution. The FCC would then classify the back-end service as a telecommunications service, giving the agency the ability to police any deals between content companies and broadband providers.

Instead of a ban on deals with content companies, the FCC’s plan would put the onus on the broadband providers to prove the deals aren’t harmful to competition or consumers. That drew fire from some of the most vocal net-neutrality activists as well as Web companies that have called for the FCC to ban all such deals.

In the New York Times article on this had an interesting phrase: “The retail portion, the transaction that sends data through the Internet service provider to the consumer and which allows the consumer to access any legal content on the Internet, would receive a lighter regulatory touch.”

Who is going to determine that, I wonder?

  1. NewFormatSux says:

    So how does any agency just give itself more authority? Is this like bobbo demanding you post more often?

  2. Tim says:

    *legal content*

    I got mad when Comcast throttled BT traffic… So, I snuck out in the dark of dawn and shoehorned in a giant prism on a trunkline off 231 — now, I just sniff out other people’s downloads and store them. That, and SkyGrabber… lots of military drone spam on that one though…

  3. LibertyLover says:

    You would think that if they couldn’t agree on something, they would just leave it the fuck alone. 90% of our problems today are the result of compromise. “You give me that, and I’ll give you this” when both sides know that what they’re giving away is painted with bad ju-ju.

    Instead of a ban on deals with content companies, the FCC’s plan would put the onus on the broadband providers to prove the deals aren’t harmful to competition or consumers.

    And what kind of BS is that? Sounds awfully close the asset forfeiture laws – guilty because some bureaucrat said so until proven innocent.

    • Tim says:

      *asset forfeiture laws*

      These are not so much ‘because some bureaucrat said so’ as it is the twisting of the law into it’s true intent — The *deodand*, the ‘accursed object.’

      They say that property has no rights so that they may fuck it at will in front of you, wife, and kids. I happen to believe that the internet is and extention of my body and the reason that gov won’t leave it alone is because they are illegitimate imposters composed of mostly hard-core greedy, criminal, and very frightfull minds.

  4. Primitive human tech moronic compared to divnely created "primitive bacteria"so inefficient says:

    Let’s disband the FCC, or roll back its authority to regulate to the basic problems that caused it to come into existence, and leave the WEB alone.

    As Stossel likes to point out, the EPA fixed the problems it was created to address long ago, but instead of disbanding once air and water were cleaned up, they branched out to regulate everything so now they are opponents of prosperity and the American Dream, and property thieves.

    The Calvin Coolidge solution, fire them all, disband the agency, roll back everything they did the last 20 years, and have a skeleton crew keep watch that those regulations, if needed, are followed.

    Let the fired receive an Obama Phone, so they can look for work elsewhere, or give them a ticket to N Korea, where people of like mind and belief can live in their the system of their own little rule making.

    • ± says:

                    One of the most lucid recent posts here.

    • Peppeddu says:

      Nah, the Internet is too important for the nation’s economy to be left in the hand of a few players who are doing absolutely everything they can to create a monopoly and gouge consumers.

      The only solution is to create a national backbone, including the last mile, where every ISP can compete equally nationwide.

      It has been done, it’s working great in all the countries that are doing it, it’s cheaper and faster than what’s available in the US, support response time on premises is measured in hours, customer service horror stories are unheard of, and there’s never been such a thing as throttling.


  5. President Obola Destroyer of US has become death to our children says:

    Another aspect, the statists Obama seeded in every agency have as their mission, the destruction of our freedom and prosperity—its the dream of Obamas Father.

    Nothing they do will be for the good of our community.


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