In a 3-2 vote, the Federal Communications Commission rescinded Obama-era net neutrality rules designed to maintain a free and open internet.
Those rules prevented internet providers from blocking and throttling traffic and offering paid fast lanes. They also classified internet providers as Title II common carriers in order to give the measure strong legal backing.
It removes the Title II designation, preventing the FCC from putting tough net neutrality rules in place even if it wanted to. And, it turns out, the Republicans now in charge of the FCC really don’t want to. The new rules largely don’t prevent internet providers from doing anything. They can block, throttle, and prioritize content if they wish to. The only real rule is that they have to publicly state that they’re going to do it.
Democratic Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, who has called more than once for the vote to be delayed in light of fraudulent public comment submissions, said today's vote put the FCC on "the wrong side of history."
“This is not good,” Rosenworcel says. “Not good for consumers. Not good for businesses. Not good for anyone who connects and creates online.”