Some believe that an open Internet was safely secured by the FCC’s net neutrality rules that now treat broadband Internet access service as a public utility under Title II of the 1934 Communications Act.
Yet, in choosing the impose rules designed to regulate the original telephone monopolies on the nation’s dynamic Internet economy, the FCC now faces the real threat that its monopoly-era approach will be reverse either by a court or through the election of a Republican President that would alter the Commission’s leadership in 2017.
While Democrats and Republicans have fought for the past decade over the adoption of rules that assure network neutrality, Republicans now appear ready to engage in a real and thoughtful discussion about preserving an open Internet. They have moved a great distance from their traditional approach. If Democrats are willing, Congress can once and for all create legal permanence for the network neutrality principles Democrats have long sought with “rules of the road” that preserve Internet openness and restore the light-touch regulatory approach that has promoted the exponential growth of the Internet.
You can also listen to a teleconference discussing how Congress can permanently secure net neutrality featuring our Honorary Chairman Rick Boucher and constitutional law expert Kathleen M. Sullivan: