Mark Wigfield, (202) 418-0253
For Immediate Release
FCC ACTS TO RESTORE INTERNET FREEDOM
Reverses Title II Framework, Increases Transparency to Protect Consumers,
WASHINGTON, December 14, 2017—The Federal Communications Commission today voted to restore the longstanding, bipartisan light-touch regulatory framework that has fostered rapid Internet growth, openness, and freedom for nearly 20 years.
Following detailed legal and economic analysis, as well as extensive examination of comments from consumers and stakeholders, the Commission reversed the FCC’s 2015 heavy-handed utility-style regulation of broadband Internet access service, which imposed substantial costs on the entire Internet ecosystem.
In place of that heavy-handed framework, the FCC is returning to the traditional light-touch framework that was in place until 2015. Moreover, the FCC today also adopted robust transparency requirements that will empower consumers as well as facilitate effective government oversight of broadband providers’ conduct. In particular, the FCC’s action today has restored the jurisdiction of the Federal Trade Commission to act when broadband providers engage in anticompetitive, unfair, or deceptive acts or practices.
The framework adopted by the Commission today will protect consumers at far less cost to investment than the prior rigid and wide-ranging utility rules. And restoring a favorable climate for network investment is key to closing the digital divide, spurring competition and innovation that benefits consumers. The Declaratory Ruling, Report and Order, and Order adopted by the Commission takes the following steps to achieve these goals:
Report and Order
The item takes effect upon approval by the Office of Management and Budget of the new transparency rule that requires the collection of additional information from industry.
Action by the Commission December 14, 2017 by Declaratory Ruling, Report and Order, and Order (FCC 17-166). Chairman Pai, Commissioners O’Rielly and Carr approving. Commissioners Clyburn and Rosenworcel dissenting. Chairman Pai, Commissioners Clyburn, O’Rielly, Carr and Rosenworcel issuing separate statements.
WC Docket No. 17-108
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This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action. See MCI v. FCC, 515 F.2d 385 (D.C. Cir. 1974).