date icon September 10, 2014 category icon Press Releases

Response to Net Neutrality Opponents in FCC Filing

Beckerman: “The Internet industry is proud to stand with more than 1 million Americans fighting to protect the innovation and freedom of the Internet.”

Washington, D.C. – The Internet Association, today, urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to stand with the public and take decisive action to guarantee an open Internet. The Internet Association’s comments filed at the FCC today took aim at the flawed arguments of broadband gatekeepers that seek to control speech on the Internet, censor content, and segregate the Internet into fast and slow lanes. The comments represent the consensus views of more than two dozen of the world’s most-recognizable and successful Internet companies on the issue of net neutrality.

“The American people have spoken in record numbers – The FCC must take strong action to protect an open Internet. The Internet industry is proud to stand with more than 1 million Americans fighting to protect the innovation and freedom of the Internet,” said Michael Beckerman, President and CEO of The Internet Association.

The Internet Association reiterated its support for strong non-discrimination and no-blocking rules to protect consumers, startups, and innovation. The comments urged the FCC to adopt net neutrality rules that:

  • Protect an open Internet, free from discriminatory or anticompetitive actions by broadband gatekeepers. This principle should be the cornerstone of the FCC’s network neutrality policy.
  • Recognize there is only one Internet and apply open Internet rules equally to both wired and wireless networks.
  • Prevent broadband gatekeepers from making unilateral decisions about speech and access on the Internet.
  • Make clear that broadband gatekeepers do not have the right to create slow lanes and fast lanes on the Internet that discriminate against speech and harm users.

The Internet Association refuted the specious arguments advanced by broadband gatekeepers who argued that transparency rules alone were enough to protect consumers, and that the FCC should limit its regulatory options. Pointing out the lack of competition and choice in the broadband space, The Internet Association wrote that “robust transparency rules are necessary but not sufficient.” The Internet Association urged the FCC to “leave all of its legal tools on the table.”

The reply comments also highlighted the dangers of treating mobile and wireline networks differently. Wireless providers argued that mobile broadband should be exempt from no-blocking and non-discrimination rules, essentially arguing for the right to block or discriminate against any mobile app or website.

“There is only one Internet and the FCC’s open Internet rules should recognize that. No matter how users choose to connect to the Internet, net neutrality rules should apply universally on both wireless and wireline networks,” said Beckerman.

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About The Internet Association
The Internet Association, represents the interests of the leading Internet companies including Airbnb, Amazon, AOL, Auction.com, eBay, Etsy, Expedia, Facebook, Gilt, Google, Groupon, IAC, LinkedIn, Lyft, Monster Worldwide, Netflix, Practice Fusion, Rackspace, reddit, Salesforce.com, SurveyMonkey, TripAdvisor, Twitter, Uber Technologies, Inc., Yelp, Yahoo!, and Zynga. We are dedicated to advancing public policy solutions to strengthen and protect Internet freedom, foster innovation and economic growth, and empower users. The Internet Association is headquartered in Washington, D.C. www.Internetassociation.org

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