Pro-Title II activists Fight for the Future are asking the FCC and state attorneys general to investigate what it says is potential fraud related to the filing of comments in the FCC's network neutrality docket.
Fight for the Future campaign director Evan Greer said the group has been collecting evidence that "a large number of anti-net neutrality comments have been submitted to the FCC using real people's names and addresses without their knowledge or permission."
Greer argues that the FCC needs to investigate that potential fraud before it votes on its plan to roll back Title II classification of ISPs, which is scheduled for the May 18 public meeting.
There have been duplicate and form-letter comments on both sides in the docket, which now totals over 1.6 million comments—not unusual for high-profile issues—but Fight for the Future suggests this could be a case of "mass identify fraud."
Greer cited reports of people confirming that they knew nothing about the anti-net neutrality comments filed under their names and said Fight for the Future had interviewed a dozen people itself who said that was the case.
The FCC also said last week it had suffered a DDoS attack that impeded the filing of comments and Fight for the Future is calling for it to provide documentation.
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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.