Internet Law

FCC's Closed-Door Confab with Industry Reps re Net Neutrality Rules Worries Observers

Left-out consumer advocates are complaining that the Federal Communications Commission has been conducting closed-door meetings since June with industry giants about proposed net neutrality rules.

Following word that the FCC had a rare Saturday sitdown last weekend with AT&T Inc., Google Inc. and Verizon Communications Inc., Josh Silver worries that a “secret deal” may be afoot to dial down President Barack Obama’s promise to support net neutrality, reports Bloomberg News.

The agency, says Silver in an e-mail to the news agency, may be about to “abdicate its responsibility to protect Internet users.” He is president of the Free Press advocacy group.

However, an FCC spokeswoman tells Bloomberg: “We are fully committed to preserving the free and open Internet.”

Related coverage: (Feb. 2010): “New Net Neutrality Battle Could Focus on Whether ISPs Are Common Carriers” (April 2010): “D.C. Circuit Rules Against FCC in Net Neutrality Case”

Law & Disorder (Ars Technica): “Who is attending these ‘secret’ FCC net neutrality meetings?”

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