Net Neutrality, the long-standing government policy to keep the Internet free and open, has been rolled back by the Trump administration, but the fight is far from over. States are banding together to sue in court.
New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman announced today that he will lead a multi-state lawsuit to block the Federal Communications Commission’s rollback.
“The FCC’s vote to rip apart net neutrality is a blow to New York consumers, and to everyone who cares about a free and open internet,” Schneiderman said in a statement.
“The FCC just gave Big Telecom an early Christmas present, by giving internet service providers yet another way to put corporate profits over consumers,” he added.
NYAG Probing FCC Net Neutrality Comment Fraud Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has been investigating the flood of fake comments submitted during the Federal Communications Commission’s net neutrality comment process. Two million comments were made with stolen identities of real Americans. More than 100,000 comments per state came from New York, Florida, Texas, and California, an analysis found. Yet the FCC has repeatedly refused to cooperate with the investigation, despite widespread evidence the public comment process was corrupted. “This is a crime under New York law – and the FCC’s decision to go ahead with the vote makes a mockery of government integrity and rewards the very perpetrators who scammed the system to advance their own agenda,” he said. “We will fight back.”
Big Telecom includes companies known as Internet Service Providers, or ISPs, such as Comcast.
Under the rollback, they will be able to control what consumers “see, what we do, and what we say online,” the NYAG said.
“That’s a threat to the free exchange of ideas that’s made the Internet a valuable asset in our democratic process.”
The ISPs, for example, would be able to charge consumers to access sites like Facebook and Twitter, and control what streaming services are available over their systems.
“Even worse, today’s vote would enable ISPs to favor certain viewpoints over others,” Schneiderman said.
Small businesses are also expected to be penalized by the change in policy.
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