March 22, 2018 | News, Press Releases

Internet Association Files Motion To Intervene In Net Neutrality Repeal Case

BECKERMAN: “The internet industry will continue to fight for net neutrality protections that help consumers, foster innovation, and promote competition for the entire online ecosystem.”

 

Washington, DC – Internet Association today filed a motion for leave to intervene in the federal court case against the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) challenging the repeal of strong net neutrality protections. The filing is another step in a long line of legal, policy, and advocacy steps that IA and its member companies have taken to preserve net neutrality protections.

“The internet industry will continue to fight for net neutrality protections that help consumers, foster innovation, and promote competition for the entire online ecosystem,” said Internet Association President and CEO Michael Beckerman. “The entire sector is committed to preserving an open internet and will continue to defend these protections in every venue available. This is also an issue that unites Republicans and Democrats in all 50 states.”

The motion filed today focuses on why IA and its member companies have a justification to participate in the case as an intervenor and does not cover the underlying merits of the case against the FCC. IA’s motion focuses on three key areas:

  • The removal of rules against blocking, throttling, and paid prioritization distort competition and makes it harder for consumers to reach content – especially when so many Americans lack any choice for their ISP. From the filing:
    • “Without these legal protections, internet companies and consumers will have no effective legal recourse against broadband providers that distort competition and impede communication by preventing or discouraging consumers from reaching the online content of their choice. This is particularly problematic given that nearly half of Americans have no choice of wireline provider for high-speed broadband service.”
  • The removal of well-established, bright line net neutrality rules harms internet companies’ ability to reach customers across the country. From the filing:
    • “To attract investment and growth, online content providers (such as many of the Internet Association’s members) need assurance of a baseline level of nondiscriminatory treatment by all internet service providers, so they can develop, market, and offer content and services across the country regardless of a potential customer’s choice of broadband provider. The Commission’s Order has eliminated the clear and predictable ex ante rules that supported such investment and innovation.”
  • The FCC’s new rules harm future growth and investment in the internet ecosystem. From the filing:
    • “Today, the internet contributes more than 6 percent of U.S. GDP, over 3 million direct American jobs, and nearly 24 million additional online income opportunities in every state. By eliminating the net neutrality protections against harmful broadband provider conduct, the Commission’s Order breaks the cycle of innovation and investment that has allowed the Internet Association’s members to bring innovation and choice to consumers.”

To read IA’s full filing, click here.

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