Providing Consumers a Vibrant Online Experience
Internet service providers (ISPs) have always been committed to and offered American consumers a powerful, open internet experience so they can enjoy the web content, services and applications of their choosing. The broadband industry has embraced and fostered the development of an open internet where companies do not block, throttle or otherwise interfere with the customer’s desire to go wherever they want on the internet.
Internet Regulation Timeline
A timeline of internet regulations from the late 1990s until today.
July 20, 1999
FCC Chairman Kennard, appointed by President Clinton, establishes a policy of a light regulatory touch for the Internet’s early days.
March 14, 2002
FCC Chairman Michael Powell classifies broadband internet access as a Title I interstate information service.
June 5, 2003
Law professor Tim Wu coins the term “net neutrality” in his paper “Network Neutrality, Broadband Discrimination.”
February 28, 2004
FCC Chairman Powell introduces “Four Internet Freedoms,” Freedom to (1) access content; (2) run applications; (3) attach devices; (4) obtain service plan information.
March 3, 2005
The FCC negotiates an agreement with Madison River Communication where Madison River agrees to “refrain from blocking” phone calls.
June 27, 2005
In FCC vs. Brand X, the Supreme Court upholds FCC’s authority to define the classification of broadband as an information service under Title I.
September 23, 2005
FCC reclassifies internet access across the phone network, including DSL, as a Title I information service.
August 1, 2008
Comcast vs. BitTorrent decision by FCC Chairman Martin – FCC hands Comcast a cease-and-desist order.
April 6, 2010
U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit dismisses the FCC’s cease and desist order against Comcast.
December 21, 2010
FCC Open Internet Order makes net neutrality rules official FCC regulation for the first time.
January 14, 2014
In Verizon vs. FCC, DC Circuit rules that as a Title I information service, FCC has no authority to adopt net neutrality regulations.
November 10, 2014
President Obama calls on the FCC to reclassify broadband as Title II.
February 26, 2015
FCC votes to 3-2 to classify the internet as a public utility under Title II of The Communications Act.
October 1, 2019
In Mozilla Corp. v. FCC, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit upholds the FCC’s decision to restore Title I classification of broadband and remands some minor issues back to the agency.