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Advocates challenge Verizon's claims that 'fast lanes' help disabled

07/22, 1:48pm

Groups unified, refute Verizon's net neutrality stance allegedly helping them

Verizon's claims that the US Federal Communications Commission's new net neutrality rules would hurt the disabled and blind have come under fire by those Verizon claims to be looking out for. In a filing with the FCC, several disability advocacy organizations clearly disagree that Verizon is looking out for the best interests of the disabled, and request that "in no case should accessibility considerations form a basis for permitting paid prioritization more broadly, and the Commission should reject any overture to the contrary."

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Level 3 blames Verizon for Netflix stream congestion, offers to help

07/18, 10:44am

Verizon congestion fix claimed to be cheap, simple, completed in five minutes

The ongoing feud between Netflix and Verizon has stepped up, with a transit provider weighing in over Verizon's connection congestion claims. Level 3 claims the high utilization of the connection between Verizon and itself is Verizon's fault, as the Internet service provider is actively refusing to upgrade its connections at the point of the apparent congestion.

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FCC net neutrality site crashes, public comment period extended

07/15, 2:46pm

New deadline gives public 72 more hours to comment on proposed changes

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has extended the first deadline for public comment on the controversial "fast lane" net neutrality proposal. The extension, following a major crash of the nearly two-decade old comment system, extends through midnight on June 18. A second "reply comment" period will start after this period ends, however.

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FCC's Tom Wheeler says 647,000 comments filed on net neutrality

07/13, 3:45pm

Chairman takes to Twitter to 'keep your input coming, 'announce comment figures

Those looking to speak up about the potential changes to net neutrality still have some time to speak up before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) closes the commenting period on July 15. Those adding their voices on the direction of the Internet won't be alone, as FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler recently said on Twitter that 647,000 comments were received so far.

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Cable companies astroturfing support against FCC Title II regulation

06/06, 11:35am

One group hired known false grassroots campaign generator to sink measure

Two groups have written letters to the US Federal Communications Commission, opposing the FCC's new net neutrality proposal -- the American Consumer Institute (ACI), and Broadband for America. Both groups claim to be pro-consumer, and purportedly advocate for more choice and lower costs for subscribers. However, both groups are in fact heavily funded by the telecom industry, and are likely "astroturfing" for the cable industries in their fight against FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler's threat of Title II regulation by the FCC, embedded in the net neutrality discussion.

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Netflix warns users of poor streams caused by Internet provider issues

06/04, 11:20am

Warning message blaming Verizon for slow connection being tested by Netflix

Netflix is testing out messages warning users of Internet service providers with poor network connectivity, with the first target being Verizon. The video service has started to offer up an error page advising Verizon subscribers of high levels of congestion on the network, in what appears to be the latest in the net neturality-related spat between Internet services and telecommunications providers.

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FCC comment portal sees crushing load after comedian's call to action

06/03, 3:33pm

John Oliver rallies fans against Internet rules, FCC commenting undergoes load issues

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) experienced a heavy server load on Monday, possibly related to comments made by John Oliver during Sunday's episode of the HBO comedy Last Week Tonight. The comedian gave a report on net neutrality which called for commenters and Internet users to comment at the FCC's website. Oliver used what he considered to be less "boring" language to inspire people to speak up to the FCC about the open Internet.

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FCC to examine Netflix, other peering deals between providers

05/21, 4:05pm

Wheeler says commission will examine peering deals, believes in open Internet

During a House of Representatives hearing on Tuesday, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler said that the commission would be looking into peering deals between content providers and ISPs that have recently been made. The arrangements, such as some high-profile ones between Netflix and providers such as Comcast and Verizon, have been a part of the net neutrality debate since Wheeler's proposal was first speculated on, and are seen by some as legal blackmail even as proponents argue that players such as Netflix abuse existing infrastructure.

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AT&T offers to obey 'open Internet' rules in exchange for DirecTV

05/20, 10:53am

Deal approval would bind carrier to net neutrality, but interpretation possible

In an effort to help its bid to buy satellite TV carrier DirecTV, AT&T has now promised to uphold the FCC's previous 2010-era policy on net neutrality for three years following the approval of the merger, "irrespective of whether the FCC re-establishes such protections for other industry participants following the DC Circuit Court of Appeals vacating those rules." The FCC has recently voted to abolish the 2010 "Open Internet" guidelines following the court ruling.

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US House members lobbying FCC receive double average contributions

05/18, 2:52pm

Signers of three letters to FCC receive 1.2 to 5 times more lobbyist money from telecoms

Members of the United States House of Representatives responsible for sending letters to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) over net neutrality concerns have received more than double the average campaign contributions from telecommunication companies over a two-year window. The contributions, tracked by Maplight, shows the funds that the politicians of both parties have received via political action committees and employees of organizations.

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US ISPs rail against FCC suggestion of Title II regulation of service

05/15, 4:38pm

AT&T, Verizon, Comcast dislike idea of ombudsmen monitoring business

Amidst wide concern about today's US Federal Communications Commission vote on Chairman Tom Wheeler's net neutrality proposal, the three major Internet service providers are apparently not pleased as well. AT&T has penned a missive complaining that the potential regulation of Internet providers as a utility would "place a cloud" over innovation and harm customers. Additionally, Verizon believes that the same utility-like regulation, should the ISPs induce the FCC to enact it, would "jeopardize investment and innovation in broadband."

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FCC adopts controversial 'net neutrality' proposal in 3-2 vote

05/15, 12:34pm

Chairman's vision of 'fast lane' access may be misinterpreted by public

The Federal Communication Commission has voted on Chairman Tom Wheeler's revised net neutrality proposal, and has accepted it. Starting immediately, the US government will begin a long period of debate and public comment on the issue, which has already proven contentious amongst both Capital Hill insiders as well as the public at large.

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House Republicans bash FCC over 'antiquated regulation' of Internet

05/14, 6:35pm

GOP leaders warn that FCC proposal could harm internet economy, innovation

Four Republicans in the United States House of Representatives including Speaker John Boehner sent a letter today to Federal Communications Committee (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler asking that he halt his plan on regulation of the Internet. Government leaders think the plan will be a detriment to the economy and innovation that currently thrives.

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FCC Chair's attorney takes to Twitter, fields net neutrality questions

05/13, 1:52pm

Move intended to assuage Internet fears of 'fast lane' provisos

Starting at 2PM ET, the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Senior Counsel for External Affairs for the Chairman, Gigi B. Sohn, will be monitoring questions regarding Wheeler's pending net neutrality legislation. Using the hashtag #FCCNetNeutrality, users can submit questions, or follow the discussion led by the FCC's chairman's lead attorney.

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FCC Chairman Wheeler revises broadband proposal ahead of vote

05/12, 5:58pm

Changes address public, corporate concerns that rules would end net neutrality

The head of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Chairman Tom Wheeler, is said to be according to the revising his proposal on broadband rules, according to the Wall Street Journal. The uncirculated first version has come under heavy fire recently by a wide variety of parties, from the public, tech companies and government officials to the other FCC commissioners, all of whom have registered objections. Changes to the proposal will include language that would allow for FCC oversight on deals, in order to keep providers from separating traffic into two lanes of speed based on paid agreements.

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US Senators issue FCC's Wheeler letter over new open internet rules

05/11, 5:35pm

Wyden, Boxer, Franken among Senators concerned with net neutrality proposal

In a letter addressed to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler on Friday, 11 United States Senators voiced their concerns over the newly-proposed net neutrality rules by the FCC that may be heading to vote this week. The letter specifically points to the problems and inequality the proposal may promote, including "paid prioritization arrangements."

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Second FCC commissioner concerned about upcoming net neutrality vote

05/08, 10:25pm

Commissioner Pai issues statement on proposal, spectrum auction more important

Another FCC commissioner has stepped forward with concerns over Chairman Tom Wheeler's proposed plans over net neutrality. Commissioner Ajit Pai issued a brief statement, stating that the proposal shouldn't be the topic of the commission's meeting this month.

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FCC's Rosenworcel tries to extend net neutrality public debate, fails

05/08, 10:12am

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.

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Tech companies sign joint letter opposing FCC net neutrality proposals

05/08, 7:06am

Google, Facebook, Amazon among coalition asking for FCC to reconsider net rules

A coalition of technology companies have co-signed a letter to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) over its net neutrality proposals. Signed by over a hundred Internet companies, including Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Twitter, Yahoo, and Amazon, the letter asks the FCC to reconsider what the companies claim "represents a grave threat to the Internet."

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Senator Franken pushes back against FCC 'net neutrality' proposal

05/07, 2:24pm

Senator believes new rules favor established business over startups

As expected, Senator Al Franken (D-MN) is launching a campaign to prevent the Federal Communication Commission's recent proposed changes to net neutrality provisos. Using Google and YouTube's pre-purchase battle as an example, Franken believes that the new plan will cripple innovation and give established business an unfair advantage over startups. Franken said in a video from the Progressive Change Campaign Committee that "we paid for a free and open Internet. We can't let it be taken away."

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Mozilla files petition with FCC for alternative net neutrality route

05/05, 6:25pm

Browser developer wants FCC to better understand the modern internet

The development team behind Firefox has submitted a petition to the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC), outlining a proposal on how net neutrality could be handled going forward. The 17-page document from Mozilla presents a plan to keep the Internet open, but centers on the proviso of the FCC declaring the relationship between internet service providers (ISPs) and edge providers as common carrier.

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Netflix officials meet with FCC, pan chairman's 'net neutrality' rules

05/03, 5:27pm

Meetings intended to try and hammer out differences between FCC, ISPs, Netflix

Netflix was reportedly in discussions with US Federal Communications Commission personnel this week, expressing deep concern to Chairman Tom Wheeler's poorly-received "net neutrality" proposal. Sources familiar with the matter allegedly met with the FCC to discuss the proposal several times over the course of the week, attempting to steer discourse on the matter to something closer to Netflix's idea of an open Internet, with equal treatment for everybody's traffic.

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Grass-roots net neutrality movement may spark again for open Internet

05/01, 10:15pm

Large companies like Google and Netflix may bring back SOPA style protests

The battle between the FCC and consumers over net neutrality may not yet be over, as information provided to corporations later this week regarding the recent FCC proposal may spark future action to retain an open Internet. The Wall Street Journal reports that while some of the larger companies are awaiting briefing information from the FCC over the new proposal issued in late April, they may be readying action on the same scale as the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) protests.

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FCC distributes new 'Open Internet' rules internally ahead of May vote

04/23, 7:10pm

New rules allow for paid faster access, prohibits blocking

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will circulate new "open" Internet regulations internally on Thursday. The new proposal will allow companies to pay Internet providers a fee for "special access" to customers and boosted speed of delivery of the paid content, on a "commercially reasonable" basis, paving the way for more deals like the one Comcast struck with Netflix. The FCC will determine what the terms will be on a case-by-case basis.

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European Parliament votes to end roaming fees, enforce net neutrality

04/03, 11:17am

Connected Continent reforms accepted by European Parliament

The European Parliament has voted in favor of reforms to change the way roaming by European carriers is handled, bringing the continent one step closer to eradicating roaming charges. Forming part of a larger "Connected Continent" collection of changes, the vote by law makers also approves new rules to define and protect net neutrality on European connections.

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AT&T fires back, calls Netflix strong net neutrality desire 'arrogant'

03/21, 5:52pm

Post in response to remarks made by Netflix CEO

The Netflix and large ISP peering arrangement war of words is heating up. After Netflix CEO Reed Hastings' remarks yesterday, AT&T has also penned a missive in which it claims that ISPs who follow strong net neutrality provisions -- giving relatively cost-free data to the streamers -- is nothing less than suggesting "that people who don't subscribe to Netflix should nonetheless pay for Netflix."

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Netflix CEO slams fading net neutrality, interconnect deals with ISPs

03/21, 7:40am

Remarks are first net neutrality comments since January court ruling

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has penned a harshly-worded post on the official Netflix blog, and has blasted the state of US net neutrality, and in part, peering deals that the video streamer has struck with large ISPs. Hastings says that deals are in place, with more coming, but the toll to ISPs is being paid "reluctantly" and only to "ensure a high quality member experience."

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Netflix forges agreement with Comcast to end video speed throttling

02/23, 2:40pm

Content streaming company to have direct access to ISP network

In a report from the Wall Street Journal, Netflix has entered into an agreement with Comcast to end throttling of bandwidth by the provider. Netflix customers have been plagued by declining streams since an appeals court ruled the FCC's net neutrality rules were invalid. The move comes as a surprise as the FCC is currently working on new strategies to keep the companies from treating internet traffic in an unfair manner. Netflix has agreed to pay Comcast an undisclosed sum in order to have a direct link to the ISP.

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FCC outlines plan for new net neutrality rules following court ruling

02/19, 3:57pm

Will not appeal ruling voiding key net neutrality rules

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will not appeal a court ruling that declared key parts of its net neutrality rules invalid. As part of its attempt to rectify the situation left by the Verizon court case, the FCC is working on rewriting the rules, so that they can "meet the court's test for preventing improper blocking of and discrimination among Internet traffic."

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FCC to revisit net neutrality rules, restore blocked policies

02/12, 1:33am

Court challenge cleared way for ISPs to charge for faster access

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has confirmed that the agency is working on a new plan to restore net neutrality provisions overturned by a court case brought by Verizon, reports CNet. In addition, a number of US senators have written to Wheeler directly, asking the FCC to "move quickly" to restore neutrality rules.

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Democrats, opposed by Republicans, attempt to resurrect Net Neutrality

02/03, 11:25pm

No Republican support exists for the bill, unlikely to see the President's desk

In an effort to codify and restore net neutrality, Democrats in the House and Senate floated the Open Internet Preservation Act. The new bill aims to enforce the overturned net neutrality provisions that the DC Circuit Court of Appeals struck down in January. The bill is not likely to make it to a vote -- and even if it does, it will in all probability be defeated by the House Republicans.

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Federal court rules key parts of FCC net neutrality rules invalid

01/14, 12:58pm

FCC traffic management rules voided, transparency sections remain

A number of rules set by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for "net neutrality" have been ruled invalid by an appeals court in Washington. The ruling, a 2-1 decision in a suit between the FCC and Verizon, effectively prevents the FCC from requiring all Internet service providers (ISPs) treat traffic equally, and could lead to providers requesting payments from content providers in order to give better service to subscribers.

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FCC to monitor AT&T 'Sponsored Data' plan for anticompetitive behavior

01/09, 10:31am

Plan for data allowances paid for by content providers to face scrutiny

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) may look into how AT&T conducts the "Sponsored Data" program it introduced earlier this week. The FCC Chairman, Tom Wheeler, reportedly expressed concerns that the plan to allow content providers to pay for data used by customers over the carrier's cellular network could be anticompetitive.

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Verizon, FCC set to spar in federal court over net neutrality

09/09, 3:07pm

Oral arguments to be heard in appeals court

Verizon and the Federal Communications Commission are set to present oral arguments in an ongoing legal dispute that is being heard at the US Court of Appeals in Washington DC. The company has argued that the FCC is overstepping its authority by imposing broad "net neutrality" regulations, which are claimed to violate constitutional rights regarding property and free speech. Both sides are now tasked with defending their position in front of a three-judge panel.

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Google possibly changing net neutrality stance in FCC response

07/31, 2:53pm

Google defends Fiber server complaint with 'industry standard' response

Google has seemingly changed its mind over net neutrality, based on a response to a complaint made to the FCC. The search giant believes that it can ban servers from its Google Fiber service as it is something practiced by other Internet Service Providers, and does not go against the net neutrality rules that it has championed in the past.

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Public Knowledge blasts AT&T over FaceTime network limits

08/20, 11:58pm

FCC talking with AT&T about limiting FaceTime to certain plans

One of the new features in Apple's iOS6 release due this fall is an enhancement to the FaceTime video call feature, allowing it to function on any cellular network. Friday, AT&T announced that the privilege only extends to users on its new "Mobile Share" programs, and not for users grandfathered on the unlimited or tiered data plans. Public Knowledge, a nonprofit Internet law group, believes that preventing other customers from using FaceTime violates net neutrality rules by blocking a service that competes with its own.

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Verizon: net neutrality laws violate free speech protections

07/03, 6:42pm

Carrier blasts FCC over neutrality proposals

Verizon has stepped up its rhetoric against the Federal Communications Commission's net neutrality proposals, arguing that such rules represent a violation of free speech and property rights. In a US Court of Appeals filing, as part of an ongoing lawsuit focusing on net neutrality regulations established in 2010, the carrier further claims that the FCC lacks the authority to impose or enforce the laws.

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DOJ investigates cable providers over Netflix complaints

06/13, 6:59pm

iTunes, Hulu, Netflix traffic allegedly discriminated against

The Justice Department is allegedly in the midst of a large-scale antitrust investigation focusing on potentially anticompetitive practices by cable companies that compete with online video purveyors such as Apple's iTunes store, Hulu, or Netflix. Regulators are said to be attempting to determine if Comcast violated a net-neutrality agreement to not discriminate against competitors that send data through its Internet service to reach customers, though the broad probe is claimed to involve other cable companies.

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Netherlands first EU country to pass net neutrality law

05/09, 7:28pm

Bars deep packet inspection, wiretapping data

The government of the Netherlands has become the first European country to pass a net neutrality law. The legal precedent prevents internet service providers from traffic management except in the cases of congestion and network security, and also includes restrictions on ISPs performing deep packet inspection and other similar wiretapping techniques.

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Verizon cleared to sue FCC, try to stop net neutrality

03/02, 8:00pm

Decision could strip FCC of any regulatory clout

Verizon and MetroPCS will be able to move forward with their lawsuit against the FCC and its net neutrality rules. The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to hear the case. The FCC had argued that the court didn't have jurisdiction in the matter.

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Beastie Boys' Mike D pushes AT&T to embrace net neutrality

02/14, 11:15pm

SEC allows issue to come to shareholder vote

The US Securities and Exchange Commission has reportedly ordered AT&T, Verizon and Sprint to allow net neutrality proposals to be included in annual shareholder votes. The move is said to be partially inspired by pressure from shareholder groups such as Trillium Asset Management, which represents high-profile AT&T investors including Mike D of the Beastie Boys and his wife Tamra Davis, director of "Half Baked" and "Billy Madison."

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Republican spectrum proposal cuts net-neutrality provisions

07/14, 11:35pm

Terms would complicate unlicensed wireless space

A set of proposals drafted by House Commerce Committee Republicans in the US House of Representatives aims to overcome the looming spectrum crisis, however many of the authors' specific strategies have been met with criticism. The discussion draft includes new rules for spectrum auctions, licensed and unlicensed spectrum, and net neutrality for wireless networks.

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FCC to give broadband rollouts failing grade again

04/26, 10:25am

May renew conflict over net neutrality rules

For the second time in as many years, the Federal Communications Commission is expected to issue a report critical of the way broadband service is being extended. Last year's annual "706" report was the first time the commission gave the industry a failing grade for the implementation of broadband service. Those findings were used as part of the rationale for net neutrality regulations proposed by the FCC last year.

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UK ISPs to adopt voluntary net neutrality transparency code

03/10, 9:35pm

Companies to be clear on restrictions

Most Internet providers in the UK are reportedly ready to adopt a set of principles that aims to ensure transparency surrounding throttling and other traffic management systems. The UK government think-tank Broadband Stakeholders Group (BSG) suggests the large majority, if not all, of the country's ISPs will agree to the proposal.

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Al Franken blasts the FCC over net neutrality, Comcast deal

01/19, 6:45pm

FCC accused of creating "two Internets"

Senator Al Franken has publicly bashed the FCC over several recent decisions, including the NBC/Comcast merger and new regulations for net neutrality. In a speech at a Netroots Nation event, Franken declared that the latest net-neutrality rules are "not strong enough" without stricter terms for wireless networks and paid prioritization.

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Steve Wozniak asks the FCC to fight for Internet freedom

12/21, 5:20pm

Apple co-founder argues against monopolization

Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has sent an open letter to the FCC, arguing in support of extensive protections for net neutrality. The plea suggests the Commission is the only agency "still wearing a white hat," as few other government agencies are generally viewed as helping to protect the rights of the population.

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Democrats urge FCC to ignore Google/Verizon deal

08/16, 7:55pm

FCC asked to push its own regulations

Several Democratic members of the US House of Representatives are urging the FCC to ignore the net neutrality proposal drafted by Google and Verizon. The legislators have asked the Commission to create its own regulations to preserve the open Internet, rather than relying on corporations to dictate the terms.

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FCC Chairman warns of upcoming 'spectrum crisis'

10/07, 4:30pm

Commission to bring net neutrality to wireless

FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, speaking to attendees of the CTIA's fall event in San Diego, asserted the Commission's position on the expansion of net neutrality regulations to include mobile devices. Genachowski believes the FCC should maintain openness, "whether a person accesses the Internet from a wireless laptop or a netbook."

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Comcast accused of unfair VoIP practices

01/19, 1:20pm

Comcast VoIP scandal

Comcast is not treating VoIP traffic as fairly as the law demands, the FCC alleges. In a letter issued by general counsel Matthew Berry and wireless competition bureau chief Dana Shaffer, the FCC notes that whereas Comcast's Digital Voice VoIP service is unimpeded, third-party VoIP technologies remain subject to supposedly "protocol agnostic" bandwidth throttling. The cable provider has an obligation to explain why the disparity was omitted in earlier filings, according to the letter.

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Comcast to implement 250GB cap in October?

08/28, 12:40pm

250GB Comcast cap in Oct.?

Cable Internet provider Comcast may be implementing a 250GB transfer cap as soon as October 1st, anonymous sources claim. The company has been moving towards more neutral bandwidth-limiting techniques, following an FCC ruling that sabotaging BitTorrent traffic violates net neutrality policies. Although BitTorrent seeds are frequently used to share pirated material, they are also used for legitimate peer-to-peer distribution, and the FCC has noted that blocking BitTorrent unnecessarily favors some forms of Internet traffic over others.

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