The net neutrality rules imposed by the Obama administration in 2015 will expire on June 11. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) wants to repeal the Obama-era rules, which made it mandatory for internet service providers (ISPs) to allow free flow of any and all content available on the web.
According to Reuters, reversal of these rules would enable certain entities to block or degrade access to certain websites. Moreover, an internet consumer will also be charged extra to access websites that are restricted by the FCC. According to the advocates of net neutrality, this move will result in a handful of giant corporations to commandeer the internet, squashing innovation and jeopardizing the free exchange of ideas.
The Senate is about to vote on a resolution to overrule the FCC and save the Internet using the Congressional Review Act (CRA).
Most of the Democratic senators are against the repeal of net neutrality. Senator Bernie Sanders took to Twitter to criticize the FCC’s decision. He explained that the end of net neutrality would be a disaster for the people of America, as it would affect small businesses and a free flow of ideas. “My colleagues and I are forcing a vote to overturn the FCC’s decision to repeal net neutrality. This fight is not over,” he said on Twitter.
New York Senator Chuck Schumer said that the Senate is trying to gather votes to save net neutrality. He suggested this effort should be bipartisan as it affects middle-class families. “When the Republican-led FCC voted to repeal net neutrality in December, they handed the large Internet Service Providers all the cards. They said do what you will with the internet,” he said.
BREAKING: The Trump FCC has announced that #NetNeutrality protections will officially end on June 11th. The Senate must act NOW and pass my resolution to save the internet as we know it. #RedAlerthttps://t.co/RMjJPU88ee— Ed Markey (@SenMarkey) May 10, 2018
The future of net neutrality is now in the hands of Congress and the courts. Companies like Facebook, Twitter, Google, and Netflix have vowed to join legal fights to preserve net neutrality.
FCC, however, states that net neutrality will eventually benefit consumers abolishing regulation could lead to encouraging investment in network infrastructure. “
“We are helping consumers and promoting competition. Broadband providers will have more incentive to build networks, especially to underserved areas,” said FCC chairman, Ajit Pai.