|Weekly News Digest
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FCC Proposes Rules for Free and Open Internet
Posted Dec. 1, 2010 by Julius Genachowski, chairman, Federal Communications Commission
After months of hard work we have reached an important milestone in the fight to protect a free and open Internet for all Americans.
Today, the FCC proposed basic rules of the road to preserve the open Internet as a platform for innovation, investment, job creation, competition, and free expression. If adopted later this month, these basic rules will mean several things for consumers, namely:
1. Americans have the freedom to access lawful content on the Internet, without discrimination. No one should be able to tell you what you can or can’t do on the Internet, as long as it’s lawful. Our rules will ensure that no central authority—either corporations or government—have the right to decide what you can access on the Internet.
2. You have a right to basic information about your broadband service. Our proposed framework will ensure that consumers have information they need to make informed choices about subscribing or using broadband networks.
3. The Internet will remain a level playing field. The ability for consumers to speak their mind, engage in commerce and innovate without permission from a corporation has enabled the Internet’s unparalled [sic] success. Our rules will protect against corporate gatekeepers prioritizing access to one person’s content over another’s.
The openness of the Internet has enabled unparalleled innovation and job growth, yet we continue to find examples of this freedom being attacked. We have found instances when broadband providers position themselves as gatekeepers to the Internet, and have prevented consumers from using applications of their choice without disclosing what they were doing.
We must take action to protect consumers against price hikes and closed access to the Internet—and our proposed framework is designed to do just that: to guard against these risks while recognizing the legitimate needs and interests of broadband providers.
I look forward to the very important work ahead as we strive for free and open communications for all Americans.
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