Most Americans have no appetite for new government regulation of the Internet, according to year-end data released by the conservative-leaning polling firm Rasmussen.
Their survey of “likely voters” found that just one in five were in approval when asked if the government should regulate the Internet as it does television and radio.
“By a 52% to 27% margin, voters believe that more free market competition is better than more regulation for protecting Internet users,” the firm summarized. “Republicans and unaffiliated voters overwhelmingly share this view, but a plurality of Democrats (46%) think more regulation is the better approach.”
Additionally, 56 percent of respondents said they feared the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) would push a political agenda through its regulations.
While the remarkably small number of “Net Neutrality” supporters is striking — with just 21 percent saying they support the regulations — the poll’s question appears to skew the debate’s true nature.
The FCC, which passed so-called “Net Neutrality” regulations recently by a party-line vote of 3-2, is not treating the Internet as it does television or radio. Instead, its new rules explicitly condone the plans of major network operators, which initially opposed neutrality rules until the FCC unveiled the actual policies.
The FCC’s regulations would actually permit bandwidth rationing and the establishment of “super-tiers” where certain traffic is given priority over others. That runs contrary to the principle of “Net Neutrality,” which would require that all types of Internet traffic be treated equally.
The rules authored by FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski would require ISPs to allow their customers access to all legal online content, applications and services over hard-wired networks.
But the plan would also allow for a greater fractioning of the Internet and data rationing on mobile and wired networks, according to analysis of the policies. Major network stakeholders like Verizon and AT&T would be able to place caps on how much users can access the Internet each month, with overage charges for users who download too much information. Certain types of data traffic, like peer-to-peer file sharing, could also be banned outright.
The FCC would additionally require broadband providers to disclose their network management practices, and ISPs will be allowed to charge fees to businesses serving large quantities of data.
As a candidate for the presidency, Senator Barack Obama was adamantly in support of “Net Neutrality.” For supporters, that promise now stings of betrayal.
“The rule is so riddled with loopholes that it’s become clear that this FCC chairman crafted it with the sole purpose of winning the endorsement of AT&T and cable lobbyists, and not defending the interests of the tens of millions of Internet users,” The Nation‘s John Nichols commented.
Activists with the “Save the Internet” coalition accused the FCC of passing “Not Neutrality,” noting that the rules will not prevent telecommunications firms from dividing the Internet into slow and fast lanes.
“The chairman chose to ignore the voices of more than 2 million people who have urged Washington to support real and lasting Net Neutrality protections,” Free Press organizer Tim Karr wrote. “His rule, for the first time in history, allows discrimination over the mobile Internet, paving the way for widespread industry abuses.”
Nearly 2 billion people had access to the Internet in 2010, according to marketing research firm Miniwatts.
Trump responds to China raising tariffs — by raising tariffs on over half a trillion dollars in Chinese goods
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MSNBC anchor John Heilemann said, "we’re hours away for the president taking off to the G7 summit in Bairritz, France, where allies are bracing for the Trump-fueled mayhem that is now 100% certain to ensue, with Trump like a drunken traveler in the departure lounge about to take a trip that he dreads, already sewing global chaos, days-long public meltdown typically moved from words to actions."
"Donald Trump beginning this day with a Twitter tirade that sent the Dow spiraling, closing down more than 600 points today and escalating his trade war with China with these norm-shattering, power-abusing words in this tweet," he said, putting the tweet on-screen.
Ex-Houston cop is charged with murder after his fraudulent search warrant got a couple killed
Former Houston police officer Gerald Goines has been indicted on felony murder charges in relation to a drug raid in January that left a couple dead, the Houston Chronicle reported this Friday.
Questions about the raid, which took place January 28, began to swirl when it was revealed that Goines had lied to obtain the search warrant. The raid resulted in a shootout that killed 58-year-old Rhogena Nicholas and 59-year-old Dennis Tuttle. Goines was also wounded in the shootout as were four other officers.