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Sir Tim Berners-Lee responds to US net neutrality threat

Web Foundation · April 26, 2017

Today Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman Ajit Pai made clear he intends to dismantle strong net neutrality protections in the US.

If approved, his plan would reverse a 2015 FCC ruling to reclassify internet service providers (ISPs) as common carriers under Title II of the Communications Act. The 2015 regulation was key for the roll-out of effective and enforceable net neutrality rules that would prevent ISPs from arbitrarily slowing down, or even blocking, internet traffic.

Our founder, Sir Tim Berners-Lee said:

“When I invented the web, I didn’t have to ask anyone for permission, and neither did America’s successful internet entrepreneurs when they started their businesses. To reach its full potential, the internet must remain a permissionless space for creativity, innovation and free expression. In today’s world companies can’t operate without internet, and access to it is controlled by just a few providers. The FCC’s announcements today suggest they want to step back and allow concentrated market players to pick winners and losers online. Their talk is all about getting more people connected, but what is the point if your ISP only lets you watch the movies they choose, just like the old days of cable?”

Chairman Pai will release a document outlining his proposal tomorrow, April 27, which the FCC will vote on at its opening meeting on May 18.

We will continue to fight for strong net neutrality protections to ensure that all internet traffic is treated equally, and the web remains an innovative, creative space for everyone.

 

For updates on net neutrality and other issues, follow us on Twitter at @webfoundation and sign up to receive our newsletter

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  1. Gary O Grimm

    April 27, 2017

    Because of the gross commercialization and politicization of the world wide web it is much harder to find or produce factual information about quality of life and environmental/ecosystem issues.

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    1. Robin

      May 7, 2017

      Please don't do this

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      1. Rahman vace

        May 7, 2017

        Keep tittle 2, is good for the nation

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        1. chip ruckgaber

          May 7, 2017

          Please do not get rid of net neutrality. It is VERY important that that Title 1and 2 stay intact. The people will be watching that this does NOT happen.Thank you,Chip Ruckgaber

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          1. Mary Orr

            May 9, 2017

            Go to the FCCs website to tell them you support net neutrality, they vote May 18. Here's a shortcut url: gofccyourself.com -- on that page, click on "Express" which takes you to a page where you complete your name, email, & mailing address. In the comment section, indicate you support strong net neutrality backed by Title II oversight of ISPs.

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          2. Steve dir

            May 7, 2017

            Leave the internet alone!

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            1. Mary Orr

              May 9, 2017

              Go to the FCCs website to tell them you support net neutrality, they vote May 18. Here's a shortcut url: gofccyourself.com -- on that page, click on "Express" which takes you to a page where you complete your name, email, & mailing address. In the comment section, indicate you support strong net neutrality backed by Title II oversight of ISPs.

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            2. Norman King

              May 7, 2017

              Please maintain net neutrality. By maintaining title II.

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              1. John Walker

                May 8, 2017

                I agree with your characterization of the internet.

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                1. Kenneth Sulinski

                  May 8, 2017

                  We need to keep net neutrality to keep all companies on the up and up.

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                  1. Himansu Pandya

                    May 8, 2017

                    keep net open for everybody

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                    1. Joan

                      May 10, 2017

                      To quote Sir Tim Berners-Lee : openness = innovation Net neutrality must be maintained forever for everyone in the world WorldWideWeb

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                      1. Stephen Satchell

                        May 11, 2017

                        Net neutrality is not an either/or thing. There are middle grounds. To that end, I submitted two comments to the FCC on the initial draft NRPM. The first, https://ecfsapi.fcc.gov/file/10502189541850/Satchell.WC-17-108-1.pdf, is fairly long and VERY gray, but the take-away is that many of the questions make assumptions that are false to fact. This means that the answers the FCC receive will be of dubious value in making rulings. The second filing, https://ecfsapi.fcc.gov/file/10504057744543/Applying.Title.II.selectively.pdf, is a proposal for limiting Title II to those ISPs (1) providing access services (2) over public wire and fiber already covered by Title II.I believe this proposal gets to the heart of the problem: large companies with business interests at odds with an open Internet experience, and the technical capabilities to put up roadblocks or "speed bumps". Look at the stories, then look at the companies involved in distortions of their, and others, service.My proposal will free competitive ISPs, particular ISPs offering just switching services, or just applications service, of the burdens of Title II. That's because those companies have NOTHING TO GAIN by throttling or blocking traffic, plus there is quite a bit of competition in the applications (mail, chat, database search, VoIP, &c) space already.Is Title II across the board over-broad? Yes. Should Title II be abandoned? No. Today's Internet is in almost exactly the same place as the telephone companies were in a century ago. So when someone says "we need to eliminate outmoded 'stone age' regulations", remember that all the aggregation, buy-outs, and market failures in the ISP access marketplace are just like the aggregations, buy-outs, and market failures of the phone companies 80 years ago...and Title II was an outgrowth of that marketplace change.

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                        1. Dominick Grillas

                          May 11, 2017

                          Please preserve the integrity of Title 1 and 2. Do not sell out public internet access to a few companies in a quasi monopole.

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                          1. Jackie Sylvander-Sodano

                            May 12, 2017

                            Keep the Internet opened to everyone! Maintain Title II.

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                            1. cj farrell

                              May 13, 2017

                              Please maintain net neutrality by leaving the regulations intact under title II

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                              1. MJ BAUGHMAN

                                May 15, 2017

                                KEEP INTERNET ACCESS FREE TO ALL...NOT JUST FOR SPECIFIC ENTITIES TO CONTROL..

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