On Feb. 4, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler released a fact sheet setting out his proposal for new Open Internet rules. The open Internet order, the F.C.C. said, will give the commission strong legal authority to ensure that no content is blocked and that the Internet is not divided into pay-to-play fast lanes for Internet and media companies that can afford it and slow lanes for everyone else.
The FCC also plans to place mobile data service under the open Internet order and its Title II powers. Since the 1990s, mobile voice service has been regulated under Title II, using the light-touch model Mr. Wheeler intends to apply to broadband Internet service.
The proposal is subject to a vote by the full commission on Feb. 26. The commission typically decides major decisions by 3-2 votes, with the two other Democrats joining Mr. Wheeler. If the proposal is approved, as expected, the cable and telecommunications companies have vowed to fight it in court.
NAR has supported the FCC’s move towards strong Open Internet rules. We will continue to monitor the rulemaking as it proceeds as well as work with members of Congress interested in this issue.