Net Neutrality Comments Keep on Coming
The FCC's open internet docket—technically "Restoring Internet Freedom”—is the gift that keeps on giving.
Amid complaints about bogus comments and DDoS attacks, commenters continue to flood the FCC with input even though the official comment period ended Aug. 30.
According to the latest count, the docket contains 22,150,396 comments, with over a thousand new comments posted in the past week alone.
Related: ACA: Title II Is Costly, Harmful, & Unnecessary
The FCC keeps dockets open for comment past the deadline, and continues to post them, but only the ones filed before Aug. 30 have to be considered in the FCC's deliberations on chairman Ajit Pai's proposal to roll back Title II classification of ISPs and reconsider the bright-line rules against blocking, throttling and paid prioritization.
FCC watchers are looking for the chairman to schedule a vote on his proposal before year's end, perhaps as early as the October meeting.
In that Restoring Internet Freedom proposal, Chairman Pai is also proposing to scrap the general conduct standard, which the previous chairman, Tom Wheeler, said was necessary so that the FCC could deal on a case-by-case basis with potential impediments to net neutrality that did not fall within those "bright-line" rules.
Backers of the rollback say it will encourage investment and innovation. Opponents say it will allow ISP gatekeepers to control speech and anticompetitively restrict or ease access.
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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.