The debate over the degree of regulation of broadband Internet providers in the U.S. has been going on almost as long as broadband Internet service has been available. In 2004, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) first described a set of non-discrimination principles to ensure that users had access to content on an equal basis.
In 2008, the FCC issued its first net neutrality enforcement decision, upholding a complaint against Comcast for selectively interfering with peer-to-peer protocols used to share files online. It found that Comcast’s practices were discriminatory and arbitrary beyond the scope of reasonable network management.
The FCC’s efforts to strengthen net neutrality enforcement were stymied by several 2010 rulings of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, which held that the FCC had impermissibly applied common carrier regulations on Internet providers without determining that Internet providers were common carriers. (The FCC had previously classified fixed broadband Internet service as an information service, not a regulated telecommunications service.)
In response, the FCC issued an order in February 2015 that reclassified broadband Internet service as a telecommunications service. The order also imposed a set of rules to prohibit broadband providers from:
- Blocking access to legal content, applications services or non-harmful devices;
- Impairing or degrading Internet traffic on the basis of content, applications, services or non-harmful devices; and
- Prioritizing some lawful Internet traffic over other lawful traffic in exchange for consideration of any kind.
The Death of Federal Net Neutrality Regulation?
In December 2017, under a new administration and new FCC chairman, the FCC voted to adopt a new order repealing the 2015 net neutrality rules and re-classifying Internet services as information services. The new order took effect on June 11, 2018.
*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from The State of Security authored by Amy Grant. Read the original post at: https://www.tripwire.com/state-of-security/featured/net-neutrality-regulation-does-the-past-predict-the-future/