Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Internet Court Fight Coming in 2013

A case involving Internet traffic rules, the "Open Interest" FCC order is being prepared for court.  This case is Verizon v. FCC, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, case No. 11-1355 (and consolidated cases). Final briefs will be filed by November 21, with oral arguments likely to be heard in 2013. The dispute involves several issues.
  • The 2010 "net neutrality" rules do not allow the internet provider to block material that the provider opposes for political or other reasons.
  • The neutrality rules affect restrictions on content as well as site, platforms and the types of equipment that can be attached. These limits caused Verizon Communications to file the suit in September of 2011. Verizon called the regulation "arbitrary" as well as "capricious" in addition to acting beyond its statutory authority.
  • Public interest groups have criticize the rules as too week. Separately, Free Press, a public interest group from Boston, filed suit in the federal circuit court of appeals in Boston in a challenge to provisions granting wireless broadband providers more discretion in managing their networks.
Tuesday, the FCC named the members of an oversight panel to monitor the net neutrality rules and make recommendations on preserving the openness of the Internet. The FCC has expressed confidence in the legal foundation of the "Open Interest" order several times. The rule took effect on November 20, 2011.

Summarized from a Jasmin Melvin Reuters story online at:

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