Sen. Frankens Statement on FCC Chair Comments on Net Neutrality
Today, U.S. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) released the following response to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Tom Wheeler saying that the Commission will propose new rules on net neutrality:
"It is vitally important to American consumers and small businesses that the Internet remain an open platform on which everyone can compete equally. I am pleased that FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler indicated that he's committed to preserving net neutrality. But it's critically important that the approach the FCC takes achieves that goal, and there are some real questions about whether the path they've chosen will actually accomplish that. With that in mind, over the next several months I will be working to make sure that the FCC's action to protect net neutrality is enduring and effective."
Sen. Franken has said net neutrality is the principle that the Internet belongs to the people, not huge corporations. That means Internet Service Providers can't pick and choose what content-such as a show on Netflix, or a Minnesota small business website-will reach consumers. Net neutrality also prevents those corporations from charging more for faster speeds to access that content. Sen. Franken has also said that net neutrality is the free speech issue of our time, calling the Internet the public square of the 21st century and a marketplace for new businesses and new ideas.
On December 21, 2010, the FCC issued the new set of rules on net neutrality that were struck down last month. Last week, Sen. Franken sent a letter to FCC Chairman Wheeler saying the court's ruling threatens the freedom of innovators to compete on an open, neutral platform and called on the FCC to establish new net neutrality rules.