Free Press opposes the Federal Communications Commission's network neutrality rule order, but it has no desire to see it overturned by House Republicans.
That is according to the prepared testimony of Free Press Research Director Derek Turner for a Hill hearing Wednesday (March 9) on a Republican proposal to invalidate the FCC's new rules.
The FCC voted Dec. 21 to expand and codify its network neutrality guidelines. "While aspects of the rule may be flawed, any attempt to repeal it leaves Internet users fundamentally unprotected," Turner plans to tell the House Communications Subcommittee.
"Members of this body may be uncomfortable with the precise contours of the FCC's rules," he will say, something of an understatement when applied to the Republican leadership. They have unequivocally slammed the rules as regulatory overreach that will chill investment. He pointed out that Free Press itself had opposed the order, but because it felt the FCC had not gone far enough in protecting Internet openness.
Turner says invalidating rules will "remove the FCC's current weak and industry-blessed rules and prevent the FCC from addressing the most blatant forms of discrimination and anti-competitive activities at any point in the future."
The National Cable & Telecommunications Association reiterated its support for the FCC order -- it was at the table when the compromise rules were being hammered out -- but it was less a benediction than a recognition that the regs were better than more regulatory Title II classification of ISPs, but not as good as no regs at all.