Well, it’s official: the Open Internet rule, better known as Net Neutrality, will go bye-bye starting April 23.
Today, the hotly debated final notice of the Open Internet Rule (better known as Net Neutrality) was published in the Federal Register. Net neutrality goes away as of April 23 except for certain provisions that require review by the Office of Management and Budget (which will take effect later). The rule rolls back FCC Internet regulations and reclassifies Internet service providers. (For a history of how we got here, read up on our past CommLawBlog posts here.)
However, this doesn’t mean that the fight over the Internet is over just yet. This is an important procedural milestone in the debate over the Internet as it sets in motion on pending challenges to the rule. Already, attorney generals in 22 states have filed lawsuits to block the deregulation of Internet access along with governors in Montana and New York. It is likely more states will follow suit.
The rule follows a Dec. 14 FCC party-line decision to reverse the 2015 Title II Order, which reclassified broadband Internet access as a “telecommunications service.” This decision means that the Internet will now return to its pre-2015 Title I “information service” classification meaning oversight of the Internet will move to the Federal Trade Commission.
The battle of how to regulate (or how not to regulate) the Internet isn’t quite over so stay tuned to CommLawBlog as more developments happen.