CIO Q&A: What is Net Neutrality?

2 min. readlast update: 02.12.2024

Net Neutrality allows people equal access to content at uniform speeds. It means that all online content, regardless of its source, remain unrestricted by service providers, and that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) cannot favor or block particular websites or services. With Net Neutrality, people can access any website they wish, knowing their Internet Service Provider (ISP) won't interfere with their browsing habits or compile a profile on their online activities. Currently, United States Federal law restricts Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in how they may collect and use customer data. However, the US Congress and Federal Communications Commission (FCC) are considering removing these restrictions and deregulating the industry. To find out more about Net Neutrality and how to make your voice heard, check out the following resources: ISTE Statement on Net Neutrality. Digital Life in the Slow Lane. UPDATE 12/14/2017 - Net Neutrality Rules Reversed. On December 14, 2017, the Federal Communications Commission voted to restore the previous regulatory framework (prior to 2015) that had been in place for governing broadband internet access. Following detailed legal and economic analysis, as well as extensive examination of comments from consumers and stakeholders, the Commission reversed the FCC’s 2015 utility-style regulation of broadband Internet access service. The FCC's approach has been to adopt robust transparency requirements that they hope will empower consumers as well as facilitate effective government oversight of broadband providers’ conduct. In particular, the FCC’s action restored the jurisdiction of the Federal Trade Commission to act when broadband providers engage in anticompetitive, unfair, or deceptive acts or practices.

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