AT&T, Comcast win as Trump FCC urges end of Obama web rules

Federal Communication Commission Commissioner Ajit Pai speaks during an open hearing and vote on

AT&T, Comcast win as Trump FCC urges end of Obama web rules

Under the proposal, the FCC's rules would pre-empt state or local regulations that impose net neutrality requirements on broadband providers, a senior FCC official said. He distributed his alternative plan to other FCC commissioners Tuesday in preparation for a December 14 vote on the proposal, and promised to release his entire proposal Wednesday.

"Pai admitted in April, even before he launched this process, that he'd already made up his mind to unravel these popular protections and abandon the legally sound definition that makes Net Neutrality enforceable".

"Under my proposal, the federal government will stop micromanaging the internet", said Pai in a statement.

"Businesses large and small will have a clearer path to invest more in our nation's broadband infrastructure under Chairman Pai's leadership", the post continued. Regulations that created net neutrality prohibited this behavior.

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Tom Wheeler, who headed the FCC under Obama and advocated for the net neutrality rules, called the planned repeal "a shameful sham and sellout". If the repeal is enacted, internet service providers (ISP's), such as AT&T, Comcast and Verizon, would be free to decide which content and which companies could get faster speeds, including their own.

With three Republican and two Democratic commissioners, the move to end net neutrality is all but certain to be approved.

Matt Wood of the consumer group Free Press said the new initiative was a "massive giveaway to the handful of media conglomerates" which control broadband.

Federal regulators unveiled a plan Tuesday that would give Internet providers broad powers to determine what websites and online services their customers can see and use.

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"The removal of antiquated, restrictive regulations will pave the way for broadband network investment, expansion and upgrades", Spalter said in a statement.

Google condemned the move, saying, "The FCC's net neutrality rules are working well for consumers and we're disappointed in the proposal released today". The FCC granted initial approval to Pai's plan in May, but had left open many key questions including whether to retain any legal requirements limiting internet providers conduct. Pai's administration announced its initial review of net neutrality practices over the summer, prompting tech companies like reddit and Netflix to simulate a slower Internet. In the same way, numerous signature companies in Silicon Valley think the internet should be open to all on an equal basis.

Critics of the FCC's plan say the rollback may mean higher prices and drastic service changes as providers adjust their business practices. "If Internet access providers can block some services and cut special deals that prioritize some companies' content over others, that would threaten the innovation that makes the Internet awesome".

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