Isn’t it peculiar how everyone agrees that things like “Internet fast lanes” are bad except for the companies that stand to directly benefit from these net neutrality-bending ideas, and the lobbyists on their payrolls? The debate rages on, and net neutrality shot into the spotlight yet again earlier this week when President Obama came out in opposition of fast lanes, and in support of Title II of the Telecommunications Act, which would reclassify Internet service providers as utilities.
Shockingly, FCC commissioner and former top cable industry lobbyist Tom Wheeler doesn’t seem to agree.
We have covered a number of ways Internet fast lanes and other concepts that are outside the bounds of reasonable net neutrality are already ruining the Internet, and now we have another huge one to toss onto the pile.
According to the company’s CEO, AT&T will completely halt its efforts to roll out high-speed fiber to 100 U.S. cities. The carrier said it will not resume its fiber rollout until net neutrality rules are finalized.
“We can’t go out and invest that kind of money deploying fiber to 100 cities not knowing under what rules those investments will be governed,” AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson said, according to Reuters. “We think it is prudent to just pause and make sure we have line of sight and understanding as to what those rules would look like.”
This will likely be the first of many similar issues that will arise unless net neutrality rules are decided and implemented soon. And once again, consumers are the biggest losers.