Net Neutrality, the FCC, and Title II: What Lawyers are Saying

[Updated January, 24, 2011:]

Copy: FCC’s Report & Order on Net Neutrality (194 pages; posted by Gerry Elman):

“On Dec. 23, 2010, the FCC released this controversial order on
broadband industry policies. Whether the FCC has jurisdiction and power
to govern this subject matter, and whether this achieves the objective
of net neutrality, is hotly debated.” See report>>

Net Neutrality at the FCC: A Critique of the Legal Reasoning of its Net Neutrality Order (by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP):

“The rules are based on the FCC’s determination that regulation is
necessary to assure the continued growth and development of the
Internet. That is a departure from previous FCC administrations, for
whom, with a few exceptions, “Hands off the Internet” was not just a
slogan, but a policy.

Among those deregulatory programs, most relevant for present
purposes are those classifying broadband Internet access as an
“information service,” rather than a “telecommunications service.” The
“classification orders” reflected the FCC’s view that broadband should
be exempt from traditional common carrier / public utility regulation
(e.g., the obligation to provide just, reasonable, and
nondiscriminatory service upon request, transfer of control oversight,
and possible regulation of rates, among others). The FCC viewed such
regulation as a deterrent to broadband investment…” Read more>>

FCC Approves Controversial Net Neutrality Rules (by Sheppard Mullin):

“According to the Order, the rules can be summarized as achieving three
main objectives: (i) transparency; (ii) no blocking; and (iii) no
unreasonable discrimination. More specifically, ‘fixed and mobile
broadband providers must disclose network management practices,
performance characteristics, and terms and conditions of their
broadband services.’…” Read more>>

FCC Net Neutrality Announcement-December 1, 2010 (by Owen Kurtin):

“Yesterdayʼs announcement by Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski that the Commission will pursue enactment of rules to ensure unblocked, non-discriminatory access to the Internet without attempting to re-classify broadband from its existing classification as Communications Act of 1934 Title I ‘Information Service’ to Title II ‘Telecommunications Service’ is a victory for net neutrality proponents and common sense, as well as a vindication of the position we took in May. The rules may be adopted at a full Commission meeting on December 21…” Read more>>

Why Net Neutrality Rules and Broadband “Third Way” Reclassification Are Unnecessary and Unlawful (by Glenn Manishin, Duane Morris LLP):

“The highly polarized debate over so-called net neutrality at the Federal Communications Commission exposes serious philosophical differences about the appropriate role of government in managing technological change. Neither side is unfortunately free either from hyperbole or fear-mongering.1 And neither side is completely right…” An 18-page analysis by noted tech policy lawyer, Glenn Manishin. Read more>>

 Net Neutrality from the JD Supra Archive:

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