Net Neutrality Is Alive and Well in Washington State

Net neutrality dead in US Top gloomy predictions of internet’s near future

After months of debate and public backlash, the Federal Communications Commission has officially repealed Obama-era net neutrality rules that required Internet providers to offer equal access to all web content.

The 2015 order subjected internet providers to strict regulations by the FCC, arguing consumers needed protection from internet provider practices and said internet providers could engage in "just and reasonable conduct".

Black says he's nervous the repeal of net neutrality could curb the flow of internet traffic to his website and hurt business. "We were hopeful that that type of the light regulatory approach we're taking will lead to. better, faster, cheaper Internet access for consumers and more competition particularly". We still don't and won't block, throttle or discriminate against lawful content. Businesses like Netflix, with large audiences and bank accounts, will likely be able to adapt - but smaller companies may struggle to strike deals with providers and pay up to have their content delivered faster.

"Americans across the country are raising their voices against the Trump assault on the free Internet, yet House Republicans inexplicably refuse to listen to the will of the people and save net neutrality", she continued. Instead, the agency will only require providers to publicly disclose how they treat internet traffic, and will leave it up to the Federal Trade Commission to make sure they are doing what they said and aren't being anticompetitive. "Hold the obituaries. Net neutrality is not dead", Fight for the Future Deputy Director Evan Greer said in a statement.

"Those "fast lanes" will put those who won't or can not pay in the slow lane, making the internet look a lot like cable TV", Gigi Sohn, a counselor to former FCC chairman Tom Wheeler and a staunch supporter of net neutrality, told CNNMoney.

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Washington and OR now have their own net neutrality laws, and a bill is pending in California's legislature. Additionally, 22 states' and Washington DC's attorneys general have filed a lawsuit alongside almost a dozen other groups, challenging the FCC decision.

In May, congress overturned the repeal with a bipartisan vote in the Senate.

For instance, both the ISPs and the FCC have claimed that net neutrality has hurt investment. Supporters of net neutrality have also said that without regulation, a greater socio-economic digital divide could develop, creating a class of information "haves" and "have nots".

Most now have service terms that specify they won't give preferential treatment to certain websites and services, including their own. And three other states, California, New York and IL, plan to pass their own versions soon.

So net neutrality's path through Congress is an uphill battle, but some are still optimistic that net neutrality will win out in the end.

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