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CTIA Backs FCC on Net Neutrality Rules

CTIA: The Wireless Association has joined the FCC's side in the legal fight over the commission's new network neutrality rules, which take effect next month.

CTIA filed a motion to intervene with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, signaling to the court that it stands by the FCC's decision last December to codify and expand its network neutrality principles.

The legal battle at issue is not the challenge to the rules by Verizon (Verizon Wireless is a CTIA member) as sweeping and unneeded regulation, but the separate challenge to the rules by Free Press and others who took issue with the FCC's decision not to apply the openness and access requirements on mobile broadband, saying there were differences that justified that disparate treatment, but that it would monitor the space and adjust that decision as necessary.

"For several independent reasons the FCC determined that 'mobile broadband presents special considerations that suggest differences in how and when open Internet protections should apply,' CTIA told the court. "The FCC accordingly imposed fewer regulatory burdens on mobile Internet access services than on their fixed-line counterparts. Petitioners challenge the FCC's determination that 'wireless is different' and its decision to regulate mobile services more lightly. CTIA wishes to defend the FCC against that challenge and any related arguments that the FCC erred in imposing too few regulatory burdens."