CNET is reporting that the Federal Communications Commission officially adopted controversial net neutrality rules today, but the fight is far from over, since the FCC’s authority to create and enforce these rules may still be in question. With the support of Democratic FCC chairman Julius Genachowski and two other Democratic commissioners, Michael Copps and Mignon Clyburn, the agency passed the rules in a 3-to-2 vote. The two Republican commissioners, Robert McDowell and Meredith Attwell Baker, voted against the rules. While Democrats and Republicans on the commission differ on the need for these rules, all four seem to agree that the commission’s legal authority for enforcing them is still uncertain. The FCC lost an earlier court case to Comcast over net neutrality issues. It is being reported that Verizon plans to sue the FCC over today’s findings, saying the agency does not have the authority to impose net neutrality rules. If the rules are made official and legally upheld, then that may prevent companies like Comcast and Verizon from charging different rates for different Internet speeds and access.
Those in favor of net neutrality believe that all information and access should be equal for all, not tied to who can pay more. It will be interesting to see how this issue, which has been swirling about for years, plays out. Will Verizon and other companies sue, or will they adopt a self-regulatory model?
Read more at CNET.