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Net Neutrality Gets Boost From Key Congressman

Efforts to prevent network operators from blocking or slowing Internet traffic got a boost Thursday morning from Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.), chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, who said he would co-sign a bill that would codify net neutrality.

During a subcommitee oversight hearing on the Federal Communications Commission, Waxman said:

"Industry will benefit from clarity, consistency, and predictability with regard to Net neutrality," Waxman said at the hearing. "I think that the time is right to formally establish, through legislation if required, the rules of the road with respect to Net neutrality."

Waxman said he would sign onto a bill cosponsored by Rep. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Anna G. Eshoo (D-Calif.) that would prevent telecom and cable operators from blocking, slowing or charging more for certain traffic to run on their networks.

Public interest groups blasted off press releases minutes after his remarks hailing Waxman for his supportive comments during the otherwise tame hearing.

Still, telecom and cable industry watchers say any action on net neutrality would likely come in the form of new rules from the Federal Communications Commission. There has been talk of an additional rule to its four principles on how network operators can manage their networks. With a wireless competition review underway, industry insiders are also speculating whether the FCC may introduce new net neutrality rules for the wireless industry.

By Cecilia Kang  |  September 17, 2009; 2:14 PM ET  | Category:  Cecilia Kang
Previous: FCC Oversight Hearing Underway | Next: Looking for Your Ideas, Questions for Upcoming Panel Discussion On Broadband and Mobile

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Please email us to report offensive comments.

"Net-Neutrality" is like someone milking your cow and keeping the milk, without your permission, while you keep feeding it. Having "Whackey" Waxman get involved is a REAL dangerous joke.

I pay for speed and for bandwidth. With people downloading movies and not paying for it under the guise of "Net-Neutrality" will allow degradation of services for those whose service provider chooses not to invest in the infrastructure, but offer cheap rates instead.

Sorry "Wackey" Waxman, but I'm not buying it.

Posted by: Computer_Forensics_Expert_Computer_Expert_Witness | September 17, 2009 9:49 PM

Henry Waxman is absolutely correct it IS overdue. All rational fair minded Americans are outraged by the outright theft and greed of these cable companies. As if 40-80 dollars a month for high speed Internet is NOT enough for an infrastructure that is already built and performing.

While your at it Waxman why dont you pass a bill outlawing phone companies from forcing Americans to contract for TWO YEARS and or pay a penalty if you switch carriers. Who came up with that idea? Probably the same clown who thought up charging different rates for different speed usage. Muppets.

Posted by: Homunculus | September 17, 2009 10:10 PM

Posted by: Computer_Forensics_Expert_Computer_Expert_Witness

"Net-Neutrality" is like someone milking your cow and keeping the milk, without your permission...
I pay for speed and for bandwidth.

If you pay for speed and bandwidth but then are penalized for using it, that doesn't make much sense. If a company is overselling their network, selectively choosing to slow/block content for their users to free up resources, it is cheating its customers. It gets even worse when 'cable companies' are owned by larger companies that are trying to make money by getting their proprietary content out on the web.

Posted by: jayjordan | September 18, 2009 10:13 AM

Anyone against Net Neutrality either:

A: has no real grasp of what it is and why Consumers are fighting for it... and thus should educate themselves before spouting off at the mouth

B: Works for the other side

C: can barely use a computer, has contracted hundreds of trojans and virii, and blames their slow speeds on "downloaders" instead of a lack of due diligence on their part, as well demanding a more robust infrastructure at the ISP.

Have you seen what internet ISPs pay their senior level sales, technical and executive teams? Do you think they are re-investing in the business to give us what we are paying for?

I dont think so, and most other Americans agree. All their whining about not having enough money to pay for the downloaders is all BS. They are just looking to make more money while offering less and less..

Posted by: indep2 | September 18, 2009 10:37 AM

Guaranteed continued net neutrality will require legislation. The FCC is run by political appointments and if Republicans again gain the White House, they will most assuredly pick commissioners who will do the bidding of the telecom/cable companies. To prevent that unhappy occurrence Congress must act to lock in net neutrality regardless of what party controls the White House.

Posted by: ctenwith | September 18, 2009 11:53 AM

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