U.S. congressional Republicans’ bill aims to head off Obama’s so-called ‘net neutrality’ plan

“U.S. congressional Republicans on Friday proposed legislation that would set ‘net neutrality’ rules for broadband providers, aiming to head off tougher regulations backed by the Obama administration,” Alina Selyukh reports for Reuters. “Lawmakers hope to counter the Federal Communications Commission’s vote on Feb. 26 for rules that are expected to follow the legal path endorsed by President Barack Obama, which Internet service providers (ISPs) and Republicans say would unnecessarily burden the industry with regulation.”

“At stake is what rules should govern how ISPs manage web traffic on their networks to ensure they treat all Internet content fairly. At the heart of the latest phase in the debate over the rules is what legal authority should guide regulations,” Selyukh reports. “Net neutrality activists, now with Obama’s backing, have advocated for regulation of ISPs under a section of communications law known as Title II, which would treat them more like public utilities. The draft legislation from Senate Commerce Chairman John Thune and House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton seeks to set new net neutrality rules, such as bans on data throttling and paid prioritization, but without resorting to the Title II regime.”

“The Republican bill would ban blocking or slowing some downloads, unless required for reasonable network management, but would also restrict the FCC from expanding its authority over ISPs beyond enforcing existing rules,” Selyukh reports. “The House and Senate commerce committees will hold net neutrality hearings on Jan. 21.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews readers too numerous to mention individually for the heads up.]

Related articles:
U.S. Congressional proposal offers Internet rules of the road – January 15, 2015
U.S. FCC says it will vote on so-called ‘net neutrality’ in February – January 3, 2015
FCC hopes its rules for so-called ‘net neutrality’ survive inevitable litigation – November 22, 2014
Obama-appointed FCC chairman distances himself from Obama on so-called ‘net neutrality’ – November 12, 2014
What does so-called ‘net neutrality’ mean for Apple? – November 12, 2014
AT&T to pause fiber investment until net neutrality rules are decided – November 12, 2014
U.S. FCC plays Russian Roulette with so-called ‘net neutrality’ – November 11, 2014
U.S. House Speaker John Boehner: Republicans will continue efforts to stop misguided scheme to regulate the Internet – November 10, 2014
Tech Freedom: Obama cynically exploits confusion over Title II, misses opportunity to lead on legislative deal – November 10, 2014
Obama want FCC to regulate the Internet; Cruz calls it ‘Obamacare for the Internet’ – November 10, 2014

38 Comments

  1. Begs the question: is the internet infrastructure? If so, regulate it as such. If not, keep the keep the monoplists out of court when local governments ( the will of the people ) try to produce solutions to their price gouging and lack of responsiveness. The entrenched providers may think they have a right to provide your town with the equivalent of a two-lane dirt road, but as free American citizens, that isn’t the case.

      1. Sorry Mitt, corporations are not people. We execute people when they murder other people.

        But, the entrenched providers can do as they wish, they just need to stop trying to block citizens from finding other solutions. Cant have it both ways.

        1. Legally, for the purposes of contracts and law suits, corporations have many of the rights and obligations of persons. I know this concept enrages many lefties, but it’s a legal fiction that also allows them to sue EVIL Corporations. So let me rephrase: As legal entities composed of free citizens, internet providers don’t have to do shit for you if there is no profit to be had. Booooh capitalism! But here’s the rub: the only reason you have internet access in the first place is that a group of free citizens got together and provided to you!

          1. Actually in order to provide the service that they sell, internet providers must follow guidelines set up by the government (federal and states). Regulations if you will…

            They are free to make money – Yay Capitalism, however they must adhere to regulations that assure basic services are provided (or expanded) to all.

            In a nutshell, this is what we have now. What they don’t want is the government stepping in further and telling them that they can’t treat traffic differently.

            Sadly if they get regulated like a PUC they’ll probably just find a way to make even more money, like switching to metered usage.

      2. “As free American citizens, the entrenched providers have a right not to provide you with anything.”

        Good! Let the monopolistic asshats get out of the business entirely. Then we could have some reasonable, competition driven alternatives.

  2. “unless required for reasonable network management”

    And therein lies the escape clause. This bill says the ISPs can do what ever they want, they just need to wave this flag while doing it.

    1. This “flag” means endless litigation is in our future if the Thune/Upton bill is enacted. It is no solution to monopoly abuse. It is definitely a wolf-in-sheep’s-clothing bill.

  3. The Quiviran Prayer:

    “O Obama Messiah! O Earth Nanny! Deliver us from the wicked corporations that make things that employ the unwashed! Take all our freedoms, that we may better serve thee, O Omniscient One! O Knower Of All Things Corrupt and Deceitful!”

    AMEN!

      1. Corporations cannot:
        • Tax your labor.
        • Imprison you.
        • Create wars that kill you.
        • Frisk you at airports.
        • Record your every digital conversation.
        • Coerce concocted curricula on your children.
        • Mandate & fine you for what you say or think.

        1. Corporations:
          • Minimize the value of your labor in order to maximize profits
          • Run and profit from many of the prisons that imprison you.
          • Profit from the wars that kill you.
          • Profit from the body scanners and other surveillance equipment installed at airports.
          • Record workers’ every digital conversation, internet activity, email, and keystroke.
          • Subsidize biased “scientific” research and embed advertising and biased educational materials into cash-strapped schools to indoctrinate your children.
          • Limit what you can say and fire you if you exceed those limits.

          Corporations likely have more information on your daily activities than the Feds. And, since the corporations drive both elections and legislation by advertisements, lobbying, payoffs, and outright bribes, there really isn’t that much difference between the government and corporations. If you haven’t noticed, corporations are basically controlling government the past couple of decades.

          1. • Minimize the value of your labor in order to maximize profits>You are free to take your skills elsewhere or create self-employment.
            • Run and profit from many of the prisons that imprison you.>Government has allowed private prisons.
            • Profit from the wars that kill you.>Government creates the wars that purchase the armaments.
            • Profit from the body scanners and other surveillance equipment installed at airports.>Government mandates body scanners through law. Body scanner companies cannot create law.
            • Record workers’ every digital conversation, internet activity, email, and keystroke.>Simply refuse employment at any business that practices those techniques, your choice.
            • Subsidize biased “scientific” research and embed advertising and biased educational materials into cash-strapped schools to indoctrinate your children.>”Cash-strapped” schools are run by the government, not corporations.
            • Limit what you can say and fire you if you exceed those limits.>You have the personal choice of where you wish to be employed.

            further addressing your statist drivel:
            • Corporations do not likely have more information on citizens than the Federal government.
            • Government employees accept graft, they are responsible for their own actions.
            • The difference between government and corporations, or any business, the choice is yours to patronize.
            • If corporations are controlling government for the last decades, that is the result of government graft.
            * You’re a jackass.

            1. further, acceptance of bribes by public servants is a felony. If these pimps who have betrayed the trust of the people were thrown in jail, most of the graft would come to a screaming, fscking halt. But don’t hold your breath. the most-despised official of all the Federal government, Eric Holder, will never do his job. His character is less than nothing, nothing being the vomit that appointed him.

        2. “• Create wars that kill you.”

          They kind of do. Richard Chaney was acting in interest of his corporation when he took over VP office. He has made complete 180 degrees turn on his smart position against invading Iraq he has numerously voiced on tape just few years earlier.

            1. But he has acted on behalf of his corporation, who has “coincidentally” got no-bid contracts from the government and had their value increased five-fold thanks to Cheney’s actions.

        3. Corporations do:
          – tax your labor when they overcharge for their products/services, often unlawfully
          – imprison you in unfair legal traps, as with many financial “services”
          – proliferate wars by selling weapons that armies need to proliferate their brutality
          – who do you think makes the equipment that scans you at airports? The TSA and other security was lobbied for first and foremost by the companies that get rich selling that equipment
          – record your every digital conversation — every ISP, Apple, Google, MSFT, et al already do this daily. Read the fine print of your service agreement, bot
          – who do you think writes textbooks? For-profit corporations. They concoct the curricula as much if not more than the big bad government.
          – your last point is pure paranoia, which need not even be addressed. If you believe you will be fined for what you think, then you are beyond reasonable discussion and need to seek psychiatric help.

      2. The scariest sentence you can tell a corporation:

        “I ain’t buyin’ your crap anymore and I’m tellin’ everyone I know to do the same.”

        Just ask Samsung and Microsoft and Dell and Blackberry how well that works.

      1. Give Apple’s recent track record of offering hardware & software that removes user control and options, and of course its death grip on the iOS ecosystem, some people would see a lot of similarities with Apple acting more and more like an evil corporation. It just takes time to go from User-centric to Ful-On Evilness. But when Cook cowtows to Wall Street’s every demand, while dancing around promoting his personal political issues INSTEAD of fixing the shit that his customers are busy trying to fix and debug, then we can see that Apple is indeed off course.

  4. “So-called” is a propaganda term being applied to actual Net Neutrality, now matter what form it takes. The ISP corporate oligarchy want to screw We The People to the maximum extent possible while screwing over media content providers. That means they stick their hands up the buttholes of ReTardlican congressmen and puppeteer them to KILL any chance for actual Net Neutrality. Feed the corporations; To hell with We The People. It’s the usual routine.

    BUT! Will the DemoCraps make their own mess of Net Neutrality? NO DOUBT! Yet, so far they’re sticking to something closer to the actual source concept. Until such time as we can toss both ReTardlicans and DemoCraps into a vat of acid and destroy them, on this particular issue I tend to favor the DemoCraps.

    Meanwhile, the dark side of the DemoCrap’s version of Net Neutrality is predicted to be idiotic government fees on ISP access. That’s not compelling at all.

    1. Oh and yes, I know full well that hating on ReTardlicans around here is equivalent to nailing one’s self to the cross. But tough. I happily point out that they’re equally as anti-We The People as the DemoCraps in their own special (and I use that word sarcastically) ways.

      Anyone care to help nail my feet? I suppose I should have nailed them before my hands. Darn.

      1. Amazing how so many think that if you criticize one party on one issue you must be in the bag for the other like there are only two possible positions on how our country should be governed.

        Note to trolls of all stripes:
        One can criticize Obamanation without being a Republican or racist and one can criticize the radical NeoCon Cabal running today’s Republican Party without being an Obama shill.

        I am damn sure not a Republican and not a Democrat by any means. The Democrats are largely worthless and the Republicans completely sold out to the whack jobs and corporate interests. Not much of a choice, huh?

        1. We’re consistently trained to think along the 1 dimensional political line. Right, middle, left. And yet, no one actually thinks that way, seeing as we live in a 3D world and human thought is incredibly diverse. It comes down to the usual demand that everything be made ‘Quick And Easy!’ That phrase is on page 1 of Marketing 101. We hear it or a rendition of it every day in advertising, over and over. But we live IRL: In Real Life, where being simple is a great way to get trampled. So I enjoy championing the NOT simple, as a public service. 😉

  5. I was raised in a Republican household. However, as I’ve aged, I’ve moved closer to being and Independent or Libertarian, or closer to the left. Liberals can be right on certain things. In this case they’re closer to being in the right than the other party is. However, Republicans and Democrats are two sides of the same coin, two parties in a corrupt two-party system that’s playing a game of tug-of-war with America and its interests as the rope. For one to win, the other must lose. There can be no compromise and that is just wrong.

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