Mozilla is Ready to Fight: FCC Chairman Announces Plans to Reverse U.S. Net Neutrality Protections

In a speech at the Newseum today, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai shared some details about his plan to repeal and replace U.S. net neutrality protections enacted in 2015. These rules were adopted after more than a decade long battle to protect net neutrality, and after a massive amount of input by US citizens. Pai’s approach would leave internet users and innovators with no protections.

FCC Chairman Pai seeks to shift the source of the authority for the Net Neutrality rules away from “Title II” (where it now sits) and back to a weaker “Title I” classification for Internet Service Providers because it is “more consistent with the facts and the law.” We disagree – and we aren’t the only ones. So did the D.C. Circuit Court on three occasions, along with the late Justice Scalia, in the same 2005 Supreme Court case Pai cited. In that case Justice Scalia described what Pai has now chosen as his path, the classification of ISPs under Title I, “an implausible reading of the statute.”

Unfortunately, Pai’s assertions today are just as implausible.

This move is saddening, maddening and unacceptable, but we’re not surprised. This proposal is nothing more than a repetition of the same old ideas discussed by opponents of net neutrality over the past few years.

Net neutrality is under threat and we all need to work towards an “open internet that does not discriminate on content and protects free speech and consumer privacy.” Mozilla has rallied for this fight in the past, and as we have said before, we are ready to protect net neutrality – and the creativity, innovation, and economic growth it unlocks – again, and always. Today was the first clearly articulated threat  – we now need to begin mobilizing against these actions. Stay tuned for ways that you can help us win the fight again.

22 comments on “Mozilla is Ready to Fight: FCC Chairman Announces Plans to Reverse U.S. Net Neutrality Protections”

  1. Ash wrote on

    Do we have the money to fight big money from ATT/verizon etc?

  2. Gary wrote on

    PLEASE post that email you sent out April 27 giving us a phone number and a link to the FCC comment page, so we can start posting it on social media.

  3. mark knowles wrote on

    I’M 100% for net neutrality and wish I could Donate but I’m disabled and need all the $$$ I get from SS and for 5 more years UNUM disability.

    win win win,
    mark

  4. ngogab wrote on

    i love this mozilla

  5. Charles Pierce wrote on

    The internet is just like any commercial venture. It was built with PRIVATE money and it is up to the companies that built the communication systems to make money for its shareholders. We can either have the Government control and regulate the internet and destroy the innovations that are being created by the companies or we allow the companies who are the builders of the internet to operate it and to continue to allow it them to innovate. We have two competing entities, the builders of the physical system and the content providers who profit from the physical system, that tension is normal and good for the overall system. What is not good for the system is the stopping of the capital investment of either party to provide both content and the physical system to send that content. My thoughts.

    1. ErSing wrote on

      Are you really sure the internet was built with private money? Go back to DARPA. Then the investment through tax write-off (that is indirect government funding at the expense of other spending that could have; or may have, more beneficial benefit to the public). I think it is mostly opportunity cost that has funded the internet (just because it is legal – in the tax code – may not make it the perfect alternative. Look what it has caused from cyber bullying to cyber crime).

      This is not to get your panties in a wad; rather, let’s give credit due where it belongs whether the credit is good or not so good.

  6. Jimmy Montague wrote on

    “Money never sleeps,” as Oliver Stone filmed it. Truer words were never spoken. This Pai (halfwitted money goon) would never have brought his latest case to court if Scalia was still on the bench. But he’s not. Beating back this latest effort by the capitalist thugs will require more money than the last effort did, and when (if) Pai et al. lose this time, they’ll come back again soon enough. And every time they come back, they’ll bring more money with them. I hope somebody on our side has deep pockets, because I certainly do not. . . .

  7. Jim wrote on

    Your position is wrong. A free internet will be the best internet. Your scenario is a possibility, not a probability. Regulation loves big. That’s why you see all the players wanting a “guarantee” of what to expect. Don’t underwrite net neutrality.

  8. Gina wrote on

    I have used Firefox for years and have always been happy. I support Mozilla in all ways that I can. You can always count on me to help. Mozilla stands up for internet user’s rights and privacy.

  9. roger champine wrote on

    keeping net neutrality protections in place is vital to the average internet user, and in the long run is also vital to the businesses and organizations that want to serve the average internet user .. giving media giants control over who gets what information, and how fast they get it is the first step in un-making the free internet as we know it and as it was intended ..

  10. dix wrote on

    Thanks for fighting for us Mozilla…
    I no longer use facebook because of this crazy path
    One of the few times I’d agree with Justice Scalia

  11. Errol wrote on

    This yet another example of the Trump administration fumbling in the dark. Anything goes when the desire for smaller government and less control of the “rich and powerful” is in forbe.

  12. LESLIE W ROBBINS wrote on

    Leave our U.S. Net Neutrality Protection alone. I do not know much but I do know that big business should not control how much internet I can use.

  13. Bruce wrote on

    Here is the rub – the government doesn’t care about your privacy or anything else. Here is the proof – face scans, eye scans, finger printing and finger scans, blood test, surveillance cameras, suppression of free energy technology and censorship of the free press and free speech, full access to your bank account by any agency of government, full access and monitoring of all your on line activity and accounts, RFID CHIPS in your drivers license, your credit card and debit card, and eventually, a CHIP embedded in your flesh. Coming soon, a passport just to travel outside your State.

  14. Keith Munro wrote on

    Keep up the “Good Work” Firefox !

  15. Michael Weisser wrote on

    Now why are they trying to do something that stupid and I’m always hearing about the rich when somethings going down. Overall, the rich will never win in the long run and God could care less about who’s rich and what they want unless its according to his Word.

  16. carlos colorado wrote on

    Its’ very important to keep open internet so this way the cyber security play better control concert to safety for our country.

  17. carlos colorado wrote on

    I am like free access to all issues why because people informed feel better with our democracy.

  18. ErSing wrote on

    Granted, moz://a has its useful and beneficial aspects. Though moz://a’s officers and directors give the indication that they are representing us; give it some honest thought. Just because the well-to-do give us a scrap of bread to feed our hunger could it be possible that they, too, are just like the rest of the “big” that so upsets us?

    It was not all that long ago moz://a, itself, stepped up to the plate on immigration. They forgot that there are qualified employees that are United States citizens that could be hired or trained. moz://a opts to cherry-pick employees, to benefit moz://a — an immigration policy to the contrary would interfere with moz://a “big” business model; hence, there is a strong interest in the immigration policy for their purpose; and, not for our benefit. “Crying foul” must NOT come from those who, they, themselves, are chunking stones at something that opposes their behavior and their views.

    Basically, there seems to always be unintended consequences for each and every action (see Newton’s law if you need some sort of scientific theory). Another saying goes something like, ” … be careful of the wish you make should it come true — the results may be totally unexpected due to incomplete research and superficial understanding … !”

    I am passionate about moz://a; however, I do not extend their cable-tow to the point where they take control of me through emotional mis-representation to change my behavior to provide benefit to the “real” business plan of their officers and directors.

    It would be interesting to learn how much money the officers and directors of moz://a put toward the political arena to get what they want? It would be equally interesting if the same amount were given for such possibly worthy causes like breast/prostrate cancer research, education and jobs for the poor and unemployed, and much more!

    Oh, and neutrality? I notice that each submission must be “reviewed” before going online! Is this not a form of censorship? So, tell me more about freedom of speech and neutrality!

  19. DanB wrote on

    I am strongly in favor of regulations to ensure net neutrality.

    For example, without government regulation, AT&T would still be a monopoly controlling the telephone business, charging outrageous prices without fear of competition, and huge enough to prevent small businesses from developing.

    Another example – without the Consent Decree that IBM signed with the Justice Dept in the 1970’s, today they would probably own the computer hardware business. At that time, their only competition was the so-called Seven Dwarfs and they were rapidly losing market share.

    The courts agreed that telephone service and computers provided essential benefits to our society, and access to them must not be throttled.

    The Internet has also become crucial to our society and full access needs to be ensured for everyone.

    Regulations to ensure Net Neutrality will hardly make a noticeable impact on the bottom line for companies like Verizon, AT&T, Charter, etc. However, Net Neutrality regulations, like those we have today, will continue to give smaller companies a chance to compete. It is the small companies who often create new, innovative products and make major improvements to existing products.

    Without regulations, Verizon and the rest of the gang would be free to divide up the Internet business. As a group, they could agree on who would provide which services so as not to affect each other negatively. Hmmm. We already have regulations regarding price fixing because of the damage that practice inflicts on society.

    So, government need to create regulations which benefit both society and business. Net Neutrality is not meant to put anyone out of business. In fact, it enables anyone, regardless of size, the oportunity to start a new busines, bringing new ideas and services to market.

  20. Kenton Henry wrote on

    Wow is Mozilla’s stance on this misguided.

    Prior to so called “Net Neutrality” rules passed in 2014 the Internet as we know it was a largely unregulated, organic, and vibrant community of users and providers. I don’t know what Internet you experienced prior to 2014 but what I saw was one of open communication not the “corporate owned distopia” that so many “Net Neutrality” advocates make it out to be. Companies gamble (that is risking time and money) to provide services they think people want. Some fail spectacularly (Pets.com anyone?). Others, like Netflix or Uber, change entire models. That kind of sea change can only happen when there are no rules preventing it.

    Right now the FCC’s “Net Neutrality” rules are making some offerings by cellular (not Internet) companies, like cost free streaming of certain video content at reduced bit rates, technically “illegal”. It’s only still done because no one has brought it before the courts. It’s this sort of innovation that the FCC rules throttle. The more intrusive the government gets and the more rules that get imposed, the more only the biggest players can afford the lobbyists to convince the rule makers to carve exceptions for them. Sure, it’s not the proposed intent but then that’s why they are called “unintended consequences”.

    If you want a truly free Internet and don’t want the next presidential administration changing how the world is run on a whim, don’t ask for government involvement in the first place.

  21. John Hart wrote on

    Google censors posts for political reasons, something ‘net nutrality’ supporters claim it prevents, and warn companies will be able to do if it’s repealed. More independent search engines are what’s needed, not a government agency dictating what kind of service companies must provide. Why should those who don’t watch movies be required to pay for bandwidth to provide them to others that do? The best way to regulate the internet is market forces, give customers the power, not unelected men in black suits.