The United States aims for a completely neutral internet, at least within its territory. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the independent government agency that regulates radio, television, phone, satellite, and cable communications in the United States, intends to reinstate net neutrality regulations that were established during the Obama era and removed during Trump’s presidency.
Net neutrality regulations would prevent internet service providers from blocking or prioritizing any content, ensuring they can’t limit access to certain websites or charge streaming platforms for faster service.
These regulations, established during the Barack Obama administration, were very popular among users as they guaranteed equal access to all websites, apps, and content under the same speed and conditions. However, former President Donald Trump repealed them in 2018, midway through his term.
“This afternoon, I am sharing with my colleagues a proposal to restore net neutrality,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. “We will need to develop an updated record to identify the best path to restoring these policies and to have a uniform national framework for open internet.”
The agency’s goal is to “largely return to the successful framework” adopted by the FCC in 2015 and reclassify both fixed and mobile broadband as an essential communications service under Title II of the U.S. Communications Act, similar to water, electricity, and telephone services.
“The Chairwoman is proposing that the FCC take the first steps in the rulemaking process to re-establish rules that would designate broadband internet service as an essential service to the lives of Americans,” the FCC expressed. “As work, healthcare, education, commerce, and much more have moved online, no American home or business should have to go without reliable broadband service.”
The proposal to reinstate these regulations will be voted on at the upcoming monthly FCC meeting on October 19th.