Is Genachowski Giving Up on Net Neutrality?

Lora Bentley

At the same time the Open Internet Coalition is calling on the Federal Communications Commission to act quickly to clarify its authority to keep the Internet open, The Washington Post is reporting the agency's chairman is "leaning toward keeping broadband services deregulated. Writer Cecilia Kang says:

The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission has indicated he wants to keep broadband services deregulated....Genachowski thinks "reclassifying" broadband to allow for more regulation would be overly burdensome on carriers and would deter investment.


Net neutrality supporters aren't happy. Josh Silver, the executive director of Free Press said in a statement:

Failing to reclassify broadband means the FCC is abandoning the signature communications and technology issues of the Obama administration. Such a decision would destroy Net Neutrality. It would deeply undermine the FCC's ability to ensure universal Internet access for rural, low-income and disabled Americans. It will undermine the FCC's ability to protect consumers from price-gouging and invasions of privacy.


Free Press is the media reform organization behind the Coalition, formed shortly after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that the FCC did not have authority under Title I of the Communications Act to tell Comcast how to manage traffic on its network.


Genachowski has acknowledged, however, that the current regulatory structure would lead to constant legal challenges of the agency's authority. He realizes that some changes are inevitable, and is expected to decide on the matter soon, according to The Washington Post.


Of course, a story can only be as good as its sources, and in this particular instance, the sources who are sharing Genachowski's "leanings" have refused to be named. Once again, we're left to wait and see what the FCC will do. Observers note the National Broadband Plan is also in question after the court ruling.

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