US Senate blocks effort to overturn net neutrality rules

Supporters of the idea of net neutrality got a big victory earlier today. The National Review reports that an effort to overturn the Federal Communication Commission's new rules on the subject was stopped in the US Senate. The effort was led by Texas Republican Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison but in the end the Democrat controlled Senate voted down Senator Hutchison's measure.

The FCC actually approved the rules back in December 2010 but it wasn't until September when the rules were made official. The regulations go in effect on November 20 and prevent Internet service providers from restricting access to web sites based on specific content. Hutchinson and other Republican law makers have opposed the new rules, claiming that ISPs would be subject to new and unnecessary regulations if the rules went forward.

Supporters of the net neutrality rules feel differently, saying that businesses that rely on ISPs will now no longer have to worry about access to their products being restricted with throttling by broadband providers.

While overbearing regulations by a government agency can be a detriment sometimes, it looks like this particular effort doesn't really qualify for that kind of treatment by its opponents. What if you were suddenly unable to access Netflix or Google or YouTube because your ISP restricted access to it? While the new FCC rules say that ISPs have the right to slow down overall speeds on their networks, allowing them to pick which web sites and services can be accessed gets into First Amendment issues.

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29 Comments

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I'm so sock of government getting in the middle of business. Net neutrality is a lie and anyone who supports is either a communist or just plain ignorant. Bunch of stupid, lazy fools. It's time to put government back in its place---subject to the people.

ScubaDog said,
I'm so sock of government getting in the middle of business. Net neutrality is a lie and anyone who supports is either a communist or just plain ignorant. Bunch of stupid, lazy fools. It's time to put government back in its place---subject to the people.

The American people own the physical medium and the wires. They are public infrastructures that are built and paid for by the American tax payers. It's time for the government to stop pandering the big corporations and reclaim the people right to freedom of information.

ScubaDog said,
I'm so sock of government getting in the middle of business. Net neutrality is a lie and anyone who supports is either a communist or just plain ignorant. Bunch of stupid, lazy fools. It's time to put government back in its place---subject to the people.

and corporate interests. Huzzah!

ScubaDog said,
I'm so sock of government getting in the middle of business. Net neutrality is a lie and anyone who supports is either a communist or just plain ignorant. Bunch of stupid, lazy fools. It's time to put government back in its place---subject to the people.

Just so I'm following you here, you think that its a 'gimmick' of sorts and that it shouldnt have even been made up in the first place? that everything should be left unmonitored anyway, right?

"What if you were suddenly unable to access Netflix or Google or YouTube because your ISP restricted access to it?"

then people would/*should* stop using the service and switch to something else.. the markets work, dont need more laws..

madLyfe said,
"What if you were suddenly unable to access Netflix or Google or YouTube because your ISP restricted access to it?"

then people would/*should* stop using the service and switch to something else.. the markets work, dont need more laws..


Do you actually live in America? because in many areas there's no competition in broadband services. Enough with the free market bull****. When monopoly exist, government need to regulate the market.

Soulsiphon said,
More small government please!!

Enjoy your slow connection!

Sorry, but small government just for the heck of it isn't always the best practice.

GS:mac

Edit: Looking at your emoticon makes me think that this might have been sarcasm, so sorry in that case.
Either way, this goes to Derek (too).

Mouettus said,
Isn't the FCC supposed to be there FOR the people, and not against? almost like the CRTC in Canada?
This is for the people... If the FCC didn't enact this rule, ISPs could restrict your access to certain websites or throttle them down to favor websites that they or their sponsors run. Think of it this way, Ultimate tier; have access to all of the websites you love for the low price of $159.99! Basic tier; Access your webmail, major news outlets and shopping outlets for just $49.99! (where they may outright block any site not in their list or throttle them so they load slower). With these rules, they are allowed to throttle but only across the board on your connection, not throttle specific content or sites.

Mouettus said,
Isn't the FCC supposed to be there FOR the people, and not against? almost like the CRTC in Canada?
Yes, and they are.. Even moreso than the CRTC heh.

Without this regulation, Comcast could just block access to any sites they want because they feel like it.. Or block Netflix because it hurts their bottom line, etc.

FuhrerDarqueSyde said,
This is for the people... If the FCC didn't enact this rule, ISPs could restrict your access to certain websites or throttle them down to favor websites that they or their sponsors run. Think of it this way, Ultimate tier; have access to all of the websites you love for the low price of $159.99! Basic tier; Access your webmail, major news outlets and shopping outlets for just $49.99! (where they may outright block any site not in their list or throttle them so they load slower). With these rules, they are allowed to throttle but only across the board on your connection, not throttle specific content or sites.

Ok so this is to STOP them from doing that? Because letting them rule it like that would be downright horrible, and it should be illegal. If this IS to not let them do that, then YAY, glad this is going into effect then, the web should be open to anything...though I 'could' see your view happening in some places...thats awful!

FuhrerDarqueSyde said,
This is for the people... If the FCC didn't enact this rule, ISPs could restrict your access to certain websites or throttle them down to favor websites that they or their sponsors run. Think of it this way, Ultimate tier; have access to all of the websites you love for the low price of $159.99! Basic tier; Access your webmail, major news outlets and shopping outlets for just $49.99! (where they may outright block any site not in their list or throttle them so they load slower). With these rules, they are allowed to throttle but only across the board on your connection, not throttle specific content or sites.

someone call Alex Jones

supersaiyanjericho said,

someone call Alex Jones

Fine, call me that whack-job but some ISPs have or had already throttled certain traffic, i.e. torrents. Despite tons of piracy, the protocol does have legitimate uses (Blizzard's Downloader for patches and full-game installs, Linux ISOs, etc.). Reference: http://forum.utorrent.com/viewtopic.php?pid=614064 http://torrentfreak.com/comcas...traffic-seeding-impossible/ http://www.zeropaid.com/news/9...est_your_connection_online/

nohone said,
Thats OK, just one more thing that will be done the right way Jan 2013

Seems we have an angry Telco exec among us. Since you are here... Maybe you could start uppong our stupid caps?

Frazell Thomas said,

Seems we have an angry Telco exec among us. Since you are here... Maybe you could start uppong our stupid caps?

No, it means that in the United States, we have a Constitution that says that all laws must be given a Yea or Nay in the House of Representatives and Senate. With approval there, then it goes to the president to sign if he approves (or is over ridden with appropriate percentages in the House/Senate).

Instead, this was sent for approval and it was voted down. The Obama Admin, as usual of late, decided to bypass Congress and enact it into law anyway. If it was voted on and approved by the correct means, then that is one thing. But to make it law by fiat is unacceptable, no matter how good/bad the law.

nohone said,

No, it means that in the United States, we have a Constitution that says that all laws must be given a Yea or Nay in the House of Representatives and Senate. With approval there, then it goes to the president to sign if he approves (or is over ridden with appropriate percentages in the House/Senate).

Instead, this was sent for approval and it was voted down. The Obama Admin, as usual of late, decided to bypass Congress and enact it into law anyway. If it was voted on and approved by the correct means, then that is one thing. But to make it law by fiat is unacceptable, no matter how good/bad the law.

It's not a law, it's a regulation which does not require the house or senate to say anything. The only law that matters are the ones that gave the FCC the right to regulate these industries. Now that they do, it's their call.

nohone said,

No, it means that in the United States, we have a Constitution that says that all laws must be given a Yea or Nay in the House of Representatives and Senate. With approval there, then it goes to the president to sign if he approves (or is over ridden with appropriate percentages in the House/Senate).

Instead, this was sent for approval and it was voted down. The Obama Admin, as usual of late, decided to bypass Congress and enact it into law anyway. If it was voted on and approved by the correct means, then that is one thing. But to make it law by fiat is unacceptable, no matter how good/bad the law.

So you want a regulation that is actually intended to ensure that the internet remains open and (more importantly) that it cannot be controlled by ISPs who want to push an internet specifically crafted to maximize their own profits, to go away, simply because of how it came into being?

Did it hurt when you cut off your nose to spite your face?

P.S. I'll actually admit that the FCC really screwed up the NN regulation, but hopefully it's a start. We don't even have that in the UK, think yourself lucky.

Majesticmerc said,

So you want a regulation that is actually intended to ensure that the internet remains open and (more importantly) that it cannot be controlled by ISPs who want to push an internet specifically crafted to maximize their own profits, to go away, simply because of how it came into being?

Did it hurt when you cut off your nose to spite your face?

P.S. I'll actually admit that the FCC really screwed up the NN regulation, but hopefully it's a start. We don't even have that in the UK, think yourself lucky.

I just want the laws and regulations of the country to be decided through the people via their elected representatives, not by a group of people who were given their job by appointment because of political persuasion. Right now we have the NLRB who wants to take away jobs from people in South Carolina, a place that desperately needs jobs (not that the rest of the country doesn't need them), simply because those jobs do not appeal to the NLRB's political philosophy. These groups that have no accountability to the people need to be shut down.

If the FCC was allied with certian groups that did not want NN, would you be saying it is OK for them not to pass NN?

nohone said,

I just want the laws and regulations of the country to be decided through the people via their elected representatives, not by a group of people who were given their job by appointment because of political persuasion. Right now we have the NLRB who wants to take away jobs from people in South Carolina, a place that desperately needs jobs (not that the rest of the country doesn't need them), simply because those jobs do not appeal to the NLRB's political philosophy. These groups that have no accountability to the people need to be shut down.

If the FCC was allied with certian groups that did not want NN, would you be saying it is OK for them not to pass NN?

The FCC is accountable to the people, hence this legislative action to adjust them...

Do you also think that every time a Social Security check is issued to a retiree there should be an act of Congress to authorize it? The FCC, and other agencies, are created to fill a variety of needs that Congress itself wouldn't be able to properly fill (while retaining the accountability we desire).