The Next Steps for Preserving an Open Internet

The Next Steps

After today’s FCC vote on the Notice of Proposed Rule Making – kicking off a several month process of public comment – NCTA has published a statement that again declares a strong commitment to providing consumers with an open and robust Internet experience.

The FCC’s 2010 Open Internet rules (which NCTA supported) were struck down earlier this year in the Verizon case and the FCC has now embarked upon a new process to write new rules. NCTA will continue to play a constructive role in developing a balanced approach that both serves consumers and promotes innovation and investment. But we reiterate our unwavering opposition to reclassifying broadband under Title II.

The full statement is copied below:

The cable industry remains fully committed to giving American consumers the open Internet experience they expect and deserve.  Maintaining an open Internet is not only the right thing to do, it’s vital to our ability to attract and keep our customers.  Nevertheless, we stand ready to work constructively with the FCC and other stakeholders – as we did in 2010 – to develop a balanced approach that protects the open Internet while fostering continued investment and innovation in America’s broadband networks.  But as we do so, we will continue to reiterate our unwavering opposition to any proposals that attempt to reclassify broadband services under the heavy-handed regulatory yoke of Title II. Treating broadband as a utility-like Title II service would reverse years of settled precedent, dry up investment in broadband deployment and network upgrades, and result in protracted litigation and marketplace uncertainty.  The Internet is a feat of human ingenuity that has thrived under a light regulatory touch that has attracted more than $1.3 trillion of private investment since 1996. We urge the FCC to continue on a responsible path that will continue to fuel the private network investment that is essential to the continued growth and health of the Internet."

he commentary surrounding today’s meeting and the statements from Chairman Wheeler and the four Commissioners show that these issues are complex and not easily solved. In the coming months, we will continue to produce content on this blog that we hope will shed light on the meaning of Net Neutrality and the needs of the industries and users who depend on broadband. In doing so, we hope to advance the conversation and encourage discourse on how to create Internet rules that benefit everyone.