The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) took a significant step on Thursday towards reinstating net neutrality rules, a move that aims to ensure open access to the internet. The regulations, which were dismantled during the Trump administration, have now been put on a path for potential revival, pending a final vote expected next year, reported The New York Times.
In a closely divided 3 to 2 vote, commissioners at the FCC, led by the Democratic party, initiated a lengthy process to reintroduce net neutrality guidelines. These rules are designed to prevent broadband providers from impeding or slowing down services like Google and Netflix on their networks.
Notably, this decision has drawn strong opposition from telecommunications companies and Republicans, who argue that it places an undue burden on broadband providers. By pressing forward with the proposal to reinstate net neutrality, the FCC is extending its jurisdiction.
This step sets the stage for classifying high-speed internet as a utility, akin to water or electricity, a significant shift in the agency’s role. In a world where internet access has become integral to daily life, the FCC will gain the authority to regulate broadband providers for violations of net neutrality, consumer harm, and security breaches.
Jessica Rosenworcel, the Chair of the FCC, stated, “Now is the time for our rules of the road for internet service providers to reflect the reality that internet access is a necessity for daily life.” This decision underscores the growing importance of maintaining an open and accessible internet for all.
Source: NY Times