“A Democrat on the Federal Communications Commission wants to narrow the scope of new net neutrality rules that are set for a vote on Thursday, The Hill has learned,” Julian Hattem reports for The Hill. “Mignon Clyburn, one of three Democrats on the FCC, has asked Chairman Tom Wheeler to roll back some of the restrictions before the full commission votes on them, FCC officials said.”

“The request — which Wheeler has yet to respond to — puts the chairman in the awkward position of having to either roll back his proposals, or defend the tough rules and convince Clyburn to back down,” Hattem reports. “It’s an ironic spot for Wheeler, who for months was considered to be favoring weaker rules than those pushed for by his fellow Democrats, before he reversed himself about backing tougher restrictions on Internet service providers.”

“Wheeler will need the votes of both Clyburn and Democratic Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel to pass the rules since the two Republicans on the commission are expected to vote against,” Hattem reports. “Clyburn’s changes would leave in place the central and most controversial component of Wheeler’s rules — the notion that broadband Internet service should be reclassified so that it can be treated as a ‘telecommunications’ service under Title II of the Communications Act, similar to utilities like phone lines… However, she wants to eliminate a new legal category of ‘broadband subscriber access services,’ which was created as an additional point of legal authority for the FCC to monitor the ways that companies hand off traffic on the back end of the Internet.”

“The full text of the rules will not be revealed to the public until after the FCC’s vote on Thursday morning,” Hattem reports. “In keeping with FCC procedural rules, the four other commissioners outside of Wheeler’s office got their first look at the rules just two and a half weeks ago. Now they are scrambling to make edits ahead of the vote on Thursday morning.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote over eight years ago:

We don’t presume to know the best way to get there, but we support the concept of “Net Neutrality” especially as it pertains to preventing the idea of ISP’s blocking or otherwise impeding sites that don’t pay the ISP to ensure equal access. That said, we usually prefer the government to be hands-off wherever possible, Laissez-faire, except in cases where the free market obviously cannot adequately self-regulate (antitrust, for just one example). Regulations are static and the marketplace is fluid, so extensive regulations can have unintended, unforeseen results down the road. We sincerely hope that there are enough forces in place and/or that the balances adjust in such a manner as to keep the ‘Net neutral.MacDailyNews Take, June 9, 2006

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