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AT&T: Title II Regulation Won’t Ban Fast Internet Lanes

By Josh Long
June 10, 2014 - News
Continued from page 1

The same notice asks whether the commission should ban paid prioritization agreements.

In a series of decisions dating back 12 years, the FCC has classified broadband Internet service as an “information service" that cannot be regulated as a common carrier service and is not subject to Title II.

Invoking Title II, AT&T and Verizon argue, would throw a monstrous monkey wrench into an Internet economy famous for innovation, potentially subjecting companies such as Netflix, Google and YouTube to primordial regulations. 

“Title II’s mother-may-I requirements to introduce new services and features or to withdraw experimental additional offerings are anathema to innovation and investment," Glover declared. “Similarly, price regulation, generally through approval of tariffs, has been a central pillar of Title II regulation. But, as the Department of Justice previously told the Commission, such regulation would directly threaten the national goals aimed at encouraging investment in broadband facilities."

Free Press brushed aside those arguments. “The biggest telephone companies invested more under Title II—and less after their broadband services were removed from its jurisdiction in 2005," the organization said. 

Finally, even if the FCC subjected broadband Internet service to Title II regulation, it asked whether it should essentially excuse companies from compliance with all the common carrier provisions “in order to strike the right balance between minimizing the regulatory burdens on providers and ensuring that the public interest is served."

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