Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

September 30, 2010 -

Net Neutrality is stalled until further notice in the House of Representatives. A bill sponsored by House Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Ca.) was shelved late last night after Democrats realized that the bill would not have enough bipartisan support to pass. With this bill now off the table, and not likely to be brought up in the lame duck session following mid-term elections, the onus to implement net neutrality rules falls back on the FCC.

But time may not be on the side of proponents of net neutrality - especially if power shifts back to Republicans in the House and Senate. It is possible that Republicans would propose a bill that implicitly forbids the FCC from reclassifying broadband service providers under Title II of the Telecommunications Act.

Oddly enough, Waxman put the responsibility back on the FCC - even after Congress told them to back off a few months ago.

"If Congress can't act, the FCC must," Waxman said in a statement. He added that "this development is a loss for consumers."

Of course, sink or swim, Waxman should have brought the bill up for a discussion and a vote on the floor, but many pols just want to get the hell out of Washington and back on the campaign trail.

Interest group Public Knowledge issued the following statement, which sums up the feelings of ardent net neutrality supporters across the country:

"The FCC must act now to protect consumers by reinstating its authority over broadband," Gigi Sohn, president of the public interest group Public Knowledge said. "We expect the FCC to do so to carry out one of the fundamental promises of the Obama administration."

Source: Associated Press


Comments

Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

Congress and the FCC are way too busy working on the Commercial Advertisement Loudness Mitigation Act (which passed the Senate yesterday and will require broadcasters to turn down those annoyingly loud commercials) to spend time working on something as trivial as net neutrality. They do have to prioritize their work.

Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

In fairness, that sounds like a pretty effing great bill.

Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

Agreed, pisses me the hell off when I turn my TV up to hear a movie, only to get raped in the ear by how loud the commercials are.

Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

Hear hear! I would seriously love to meet the sound engineers and their bosses that do this crap and teach them how to use their equalization equipment properly with a clue-by-four present.

Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

They know exactly how to use the equipment they have.  They use it to get the loudest apparent volume they can without breaking the laws already in place.  And they use it very effectively towards that end.

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Chris Kimberley

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Chris Kimberley

Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

Not to quibble, but an equalizer adjusts frequencies. Compressor/limiters adjust relative volume.

Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

Of course they do as they can wait and sneak in something more industry friendly later....


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Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

Even if it made it ot the floor abusing the filibuster has bee na favorite tactic lately.

I'd love for it to go away with how much it's been abused lately.

Re: Democrats Give Up on Net Neutrality Bill

Remember back in '05 when the Republicans wanted to declare the filibuster unconstitutional?  I commented at the time that the Democrats should let them, because it would be in their best interest in the long term -- the filibuster is, after all, inherently conservative, as it allows a minority to preserve the status quo.

Of course, politicians aren't really known for thinking past the next election.

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