The Federal Communications Commission’s net neutrality plan has been controversial to say the least and now a newly unveiled piece of legislation aims to stop it dead in its tracks. Per The Washington Post, Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Rep. Doris Matsui (D-Calif.) this week unveiled a new bill that would specifically instruct the FCC to use every power at its disposal to stop Internet service providers from setting up Internet “fast lanes” that would let them charge content providers more money for preferential treatment on their networks.
The Post notes that although the bill “wouldn’t give the commission new powers,” it would nonetheless “give the FCC crucial political cover to prohibit what consumer advocates say would harm startup companies and Internet services by requiring them to pay extra fees to ISPs.”
“Americans are speaking loud and clear,” Leahy explains. “They want an Internet that is a platform for free expression and innovation, where the best ideas and services can reach consumers based on merit rather than based on a financial relationship with a broadband provider.”
Whether this bill goes anywhere is certainly open for debate, however, particularly since ISPs such as Comcast, Verizon and AT&T are all frequently among America’s biggest lobbying power players when it comes to issues such as net neutrality.