updated 10:12 am EDT, Thu May 8, 2014
Sunshine period cutting off public input starts today
Federal Communications Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel has failed in her bid to postpone a vote on the new net neutrality rules posed by the FCC chairman, former cell industry lobbyist Tom Wheeler. Speaking about strong feedback from citizens protesting the proposals, Commissioner Rosenworcel believes that the FCC should pause to consider what it is doing, and how it wishes to do it.
"I have real concerns about FCC Chairman Wheeler's proposal on network neutrality -- which is before the agency right now," said Rosenworcel before a Chief Officers of State Library Agencies meeting. She said of the public's response so far that "[Wheeler's] proposal has unleashed a torrent of public response. Tens of thousands of emails, hundreds of calls, commentary all across the Internet.
"We need to respect that input, and we need time for that input. So while I recognize the urgency to move ahead and develop rules with dispatch, I think the greater urgency comes in giving the American public opportunity to speak right now, before we head down this road," she added
Rosenworcel wanted today's expiry of acceptance of public comments to be extended by at least a month, but was unable to convince the chairman that it was necessary. The chairman believes that the vote by the commission will give the proposal enough visibility before the citizens of the US. Rosenworcel believed that ending today's "Sunshine Period" commentary period is "a mistake to cut off public debate right now, as we head into consideration of the Chairman's proposal."