FCC to revive net-neutrality rules, hold providers to transparency vow

Feb. 19, 2014 at 1:06 PM
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WASHINGTON, Feb. 19 (UPI) -- The U.S. communications watchdog said Wednesday it would try to revive its net-neutrality rules overturned in court.

The Federal Communications Commission said its chairman, Tom Wheeler, is taking steps designed to ensure Internet providers treat all traffic the same, the Hill reported.

The future of the FCC's "open Internet" rules was clouded last month after an appeals court overturned them, determining the agency overreached its authority. In its ruling, the court said the FCC's net-neutrality rules treated Internet providers in nearly the same manner as it does the more heavily regulated traditional phone companies.

An FCC official said Wheeler won't try to reclassify Internet providers or appeal the court decision. Rather, the official said, Wheeler will begin a new process, soliciting public comment to develop rules that would prevent providers from blocking and slowing access to websites, the Hill reported.

Among other things, the FCC will enhance the net-neutrality rules' transparency provision that require Internet providers to be transparent about their network traffic management -- and which the federal court upheld in the same decision -- the Hill said.

In the interim, the official said Wheeler would hold Internet providers to their commitments of following the principles of an open Internet.

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