New ruling overthrowing 'Net Neutrality' may make you pay for web content
A Federal court has reportedly struck down an FCC ruling meant to prevent an Internet service provider from prioritizing some website traffic over others, which could soon make people shell out those extra bucks for getting access to particular sites.
Based on the type of content a user watches, service providers would be able to charge for the specific content or the sites visited, making the until-now free web into a cable TV market.
According to Fox News, the "net neutrality" rule had been put in place by the FCC in 2010, and was intended to ensure equal access to all types of content so that ISPs don't unfairly fast-track access to their own content over competitors.
The court said that the FCC failed to establish that the anti-discrimination and anti-blocking rules do not impose per se common carrier obligations, didn't have the legal basis for its own policy and thus, the court decided to scrap the portions of the Open Internet Order.
Meanwhile, senior policy counsel for the Open Technology Institute, Sarah Morris, said that without these rules, consumers are at the mercy of their providers and business arrangements that could severely limit access to certain content.
The report said that the court's ruling was in conclusion to the long-running challenge to the law by Verizon Communications, which stressed that it had no plans to institute any form of tiered access program.
Consumer advocates and public policy experts have expressed their reservations about the ruling with some even calling the decision a threat to civil rights as it intends to limit people's right to free and open web.
(Posted on 15-01-2014)