Washington, D.C. — Today U.S. Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler confirmed that the agency will move to pass strong Net Neutrality protections later this month. The move comes after millions of internet users, companies, and organizations filed comments to the commission last year, urging it to use Title II of the Communications Act to protect Net Neutrality.
This decision enacts recommendations that Access and millions of others submitted to the FCC last summer.
“This is a historic moment in the history of the internet,” said Access Advocacy Director Josh Levy. “It’s the result of nearly a decade of work raising the alarm about the dangers of online discrimination and ongoing attacks on the open internet. Chairman Wheeler deserves high praise for doing what his predecessors wouldn’t — taking a bold stand in favor of internet users,” Levy continued.
The movement to protect Net Neutrality has reached a critical moment in the U.S., and we await the FCC’s formal vote later this month. Meanwhile, Wheeler’s statement will reverberate around the world.
“The FCC’s move will be felt far beyond U.S. borders,” said Senior Policy Counsel Peter Micek. “Advocates around the world — from Argentina to Turkey to South Korea to the European Union — are fighting for many of the same protections as those being proposed by Wheeler. Global policymakers can now look to the U.S. for clues as to what will help protect all internet users — whether on fixed or mobile connections — from online discrimination.”
To underscore the world’s support for Net Neutrality, nearly 60 organizations from every continent have joined the Global Net Neutrality coalition, endorsing a simple definition of the term and vowing to work together to protect the open net. The full coalition list can be viewed here: https://www.thisisnetneutrality.org
Some members of the U.S. Congress are pushing a bill that claims to protect internet users, but would in fact weaken the FCC and its enforcement power. Others will react to the FCC’s decision with hearings, resolutions, and other activities designed to undermine — and ultimately destroy — Net Neutrality in the U.S.
“The coming weeks will be full of vicious attacks on Wheeler’s decision,” continued Levy. “It’s imperative that open internet advocates around the world stand up for the FCC and for Title II reclassification.”