In response to this morning's FCC hearing on preserving an open Internet, we offer the following statement:
We are again encouraged by Chairman Wheeler’s commitment to protecting the open and free exchange of information on the Internet, and to inviting comment on various paths to preserve an open Internet. We agree that network neutrality is essential for consumers, startups, and economic growth, and that “squeezing out smaller voices [and new ideas] is unacceptable”.
While we can echo the Chairman’s sentiments, he has not explained how the authority of Section 706 will achieve the lofty goals as outlined. Based on the Verizon v FCC decision, we believe that the Chairman’s proposal to rely on the Commission’s secondary authority cannot lead to rules that can both be upheld in Court and preserve the open Internet to give startups the certainty they need.
We look forward to discussing specific approaches to reaching the goal of an open Internet, and will continue to advise that Title II reclassification is the only route to preventing paid prioritization and an Internet of haves and have-nots.