Net Neutrality Rules Officially End Today as Democrats 'Less Than 50 Votes' From Advancing Petition in the House

Net neutrality regulations officially expired in the United States earlier this morning, making today the first day of a post-net neutrality internet (via The New York Times). The expiration of the laws comes six months after the Federal Communications Commission voted 3-2 in favor of repealing net neutrality, a vote that has since faced intense backlash including multi-state lawsuits and a recent move by Democrats to block the repeal.

Although supporters and opponents of net neutrality greatly disagree on how the internet will look following the repeal, without the rules internet service providers like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T now have the legal ability to throttle any traffic on their networks, and block access to sites and services completely, as long as they inform their customers of their actions. In essence, many have theorized that this could lead to ISPs bundling "packages" of internet sites and selling them like cable companies, as well as putting high-paying customers in "fast lanes" and everyone else in "slow lanes."

chrome safari firefox
Of course, all of these changes won't happen at once, and some states won't see any affect from the disappearance of net neutrality today due to local legislation. Washington state governor Jay Inslee signed a law in March that effectively reinstated the federal net neutrality rules for its residents, and other state governors in Montana and New York are said to have used executive orders "to force net neutrality." A total of 29 state legislatures had introduced bills to ensure net neutrality as of May, but many failed or are still pending today as the national repeal takes place.

Democrats took to the Senate last month and won a vote to restore net neutrality rules across the country, which is now facing a major hurdle in the House of Representatives. According to Bloomberg, Democrats are now "less than 50 votes" from advancing their resolution in the House that would reinstate net neutrality protections, with a petition to force a vote at 170 of 218 signatures needed. If the measure ultimately makes it to President Trump's desk, it's believed that it would likely still be struck down as the President wouldn't go against a regulation created by his own FCC chairman Ajit Pai.

The pro-net neutrality petition's sponsor, Representative Mike Doyle, noted that many see the measure gaining momentum as customers become aware of how things could change in the future.

“If certain services are blocked or throttled, they get it,” Doyle said. "People start to understand, these are protections for consumers that no longer exist.”

In contrast, USTelecom president Jonathan Spalter said the outcry is unfounded and pointed out that "it's business as usual on the internet today."

“It’s business as usual on the internet today -- movies are streaming, e-commerce is thriving, and advocates are using the internet to make their voices heard,” said Jonathan Spalter, president of broadband trade group USTelecom with members including AT&T and Verizon. “These positive and profound benefits of a free and open internet -- among many others -- are here to stay.”

FCC chairman Ajit Pai said in a press conference on Friday that today's repeal will lead to "better, faster, cheaper internet access for consumers, and more competition." Supporters of the repeal cite the return to an "open" and less regulated internet, seen prior to the 2015 induction of net neutrality. Multiple groups taking the FCC's side in the debate and in numerous legal battles include wireless communications trade association CTIA, which represents AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile, and NCTA, an association representing cable carriers like Comcast and Charter.

As Democrats gather votes in the House, many of the big technology companies have voiced support of net neutrality, including Netflix, Google, Amazon, and Apple. Although the company and its executives have not discussed the topic in a few months, Apple's comment last year stated that the net neutrality repeal could "fundamentally alter the internet as we know it," and if it passed it would be put in place to the detriment of consumers, competition, and innovation.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Top Rated Comments

ThunderSkunk Avatar
38 months ago
Oh well. The country clearly needs to destroy itself to learn the value of what it had.
Put both hands on the stove, USA.
Score: 60 Votes (Like | Disagree)
512ke Avatar
38 months ago
I actually think it might not be a bad idea to try it out for a few years.
You can’t try out losing freedoms. Once you forfeit a right you generally have to fight to get it back.

This is true whatever the right: right to open and free internet; right to have unpolluted air, water and food; right to a stable banking system; right to serve in the military regardless of gender identity, etc.
Score: 45 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ravenstar Avatar
38 months ago
('https://www.macrumors.com/2018/06/11/net-neutrality-rules-end/')
FCC chairman Ajit Pai said in a press conference on Friday that today's repeal will lead to "better, faster, cheaper internet access for consumers, and more competition."
Proponents of Net Neutrality have made a plausible argument with examples that show how this is not true. Can the opponents do the same? The "trust us" argument doesn't hold much water with the current political climate.
Score: 43 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tzm41 Avatar
38 months ago
Change won't happen overnight, but big corporations will slowly charge us more for the same things... Especially for those who have no choice but one ISP in their area.

So I really don't wanna see the "NN ended where's the doomsday? Liberals are playing with FUD" comment.
Score: 39 Votes (Like | Disagree)
aka777 Avatar
38 months ago
This is all part of the GOP / Freedom Caucus (i.e. Teaparty) / Trump's plan to "make American great again".

The problem is that the people who vote for this guy have no idea whatsoever what anything like this means let alone for them.
[doublepost=1528727200][/doublepost]
It worked fine back when AT&T blocked Skype from 2007-2009...
Wait until the cable companies start throttling competing video services.
Score: 39 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mirice99 Avatar
38 months ago
We have tried it out before and it worked fine. It's back to the way it was for decades prior to when "net neutrality" was passed in 2015.
It worked fine back when AT&T blocked Skype from 2007-2009...
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

tracking disabled ios 14 5

Analytics Suggest 96% of Users Leave App Tracking Disabled in iOS 14.5

Friday May 7, 2021 1:51 am PDT by
An early look at an ongoing analysis of Apple's App Tracking Transparency suggests that the vast majority of iPhone users are leaving app tracking disabled since the feature went live on April 26 with the release of iOS 14.5. According to the latest data from analytics firm Flurry, just 4% of iPhone users in the U.S. have actively chosen to opt into app tracking after updating their device...
macbook colors 3d black bezels

Prosser: Next MacBook Air Could Come in Colors Similar to iMac

Friday May 7, 2021 6:55 am PDT by
According to Apple leaker Jon Prosser, Apple's upcoming release of the MacBook Air will feature various colors, similar to the colors in the newly released 24-inch iMac. In the latest video of his YouTube channel Front Page Tech, Prosser says the same source who accurately provided him information on the first Apple silicon iMac coming in colors has told him that he recently saw a prototype...
snapchat dark mode

Snapchat Rolls Out Dark Mode on iOS

Wednesday May 5, 2021 1:17 am PDT by
Nearly two years following the release of iOS and iPadOS 13, which included native, built-in, and systemwide dark mode, Snapchat, one of the world's most prominent social media networks, has finally rolled out a dark mode theme for iOS users. Snapchat began testing a dark mode theme of its app design late last year with a small group of iOS users. Now, Snapchat says that as of this week, it...
tile amazon sidewalk integration

Tile to Leverage Amazon Echo and Ring Devices to Better Compete With AirTags

Friday May 7, 2021 2:07 pm PDT by
Amazon today announced that it is teaming up with Tile to add Amazon Sidewalk integration to Tile's Bluetooth trackers. Amazon Sidewalk, for those unfamiliar, is a network of Amazon Bluetooth devices that's designed to improve the connectivity of devices like the Ring and Amazon Echo. Tile will now be joining Amazon Sidewalk, and through this integration, Amazon Echo and Ring devices will be ...
tile sticker e1570533758981

Tile CEO: 'We Welcome Competition From Apple, But We Think It Needs to Be Fair'

Tuesday May 4, 2021 9:51 am PDT by
Just after Apple announced its AirTags, Tile CEO CJ Prober relayed his concerns about competing with Apple in the tracking space, and said that Tile would ask Congress to investigate Apple's business practices specific to Find My and item trackers. Prober this week did an interview with Bloomberg, where he further expanded on Tile's complaints about Apple and why he feels that Tile is...
airtag 1

AirTag Anti-Stalking Measures 'Just Aren't Sufficient' Says Washington Post Report

Wednesday May 5, 2021 6:03 pm PDT by
The safeguards that Apple built into AirTags to prevent them from being used to track someone "just aren't sufficient," The Washington Post's Geoffrey Fowler said today in a report investigating how AirTags can be used for covert stalking. Fowler planted an AirTag on himself and teamed up with a colleague to be pretend stalked, and he came to the conclusion that the AirTags are a "new means...
signal instagram ads3

Signal Shares the Instagram Ads Facebook Doesn't Want You to See

Wednesday May 5, 2021 1:29 am PDT by
Encrypted messaging app Signal has had a series of Instagram ads blocked from the social media platform, after it attempted to show users how much data the Facebook-owned company collects about them and how it's used to push targeted ads. In a blog post, Signal described how it generated the ads to show users why they were seeing them, simply by declaring upfront the information that the...
fortnite apple logo 2

Epic CEO Tim Sweeney Admits App Store's 30% Cut Is Similar to Consoles, Would Have Accepted Special Deal With Apple

Tuesday May 4, 2021 1:54 pm PDT by
Apple's legal battle with Epic Games is continuing on, and during the second day of the trial, Epic Games' CEO Tim Sweeney continued his testimony against Apple. Sweeney was grilled by Apple's lawyers, and made several points seemingly favorable to Apple. In addition to mentioning how he prefers Apple's iPhone and values Apple's privacy policies that he's aiming to dismantle, Sweeney...
iphone 12 preorder purple

Apple Begins Transition to Randomized Serial Numbers With Purple iPhone 12

Wednesday May 5, 2021 9:17 am PDT by
MacRumors previously reported about Apple's plan to switch to randomized serial numbers for future products starting in early 2021, and this transition has now started with the new purple iPhone 12 model in multiple countries. With assistance from Aaron Zollo, host of the YouTube channel ZolloTech, we can confirm that the purple iPhone 12 released last month has a new 10-character serial...
precision finding developer mode

AirTag Precision Finding Interface Includes Hidden 'Developer Mode'

Thursday May 6, 2021 1:32 am PDT by
A frustrated AirTag owner has inadvertently discovered the existence of a hidden "developer mode" in the on-screen interface that Find My displays when the Precision Finding feature is activated to help locate one of Apple's item trackers. Precision Finding is a feature that provides users with specific on-screen directions for finding a nearby AirTag. iPhones with a U1 chip, which includes ...