Monday, 10 November 2014 00:00

OpenMedia Commends the President’s Commitment to Strong Rules That Would Protect the Open Internet

Written by  Josh Tabish | OpenMedia
November 10, 2014 – This morning U.S. President Barack Obama released a decisive statement urging the FCC to use the strongest measures possible to ensure strong net neutrality rules keep the Internet an open playing field, stating “no service should be stuck in a ‘slow lane’ because it does not pay a fee.”
International digital rights organization OpenMedia welcomes this strong statement from the President, as recent rumors reported in the Wall Street Journal suggested that the FCC was still considering rules allowing slow lanes online. In his statement, President Obama directly refers to Title II reclassification, a strong and enforceable approach that Internet freedom advocates - including OpenMedia - have been fighting to implement for the past year, saying: “I'm asking the FCC to classify Internet services under Title II of the law known as the Telecommunications Act.”

FCC chairman Tom Wheeler welcomed Obama comments but also signalled new delays in the process, "We must take the time to get the job done correctly, once and for all, in order to successfully protect consumers and innovators online."

Responding this morning’s announcement, OpenMedia Campaigns Manager Josh Tabish said, “It looks like the writing is on the wall for the FCC Chair Tom Wheeler. Over 5.1 million people from 180 countries around the world, hundreds of businesses, hundreds of public interest groups, and even his own President, are now calling for the strongest rules possible to stop slow lanes online. It would be absurd to think that he’s going to ignore this growing consensus and nobody is falling for his delay tactics.”

Tabish continued: “Together, we have made things clear for FCC: all signs point to real net neutrality and a ban on Internet slow lanes through Title II reclassification, which would guarantee that the Internet remains an open playing field for innovators, entrepreneurs, and everyday Internet users. Obama’s words further delegitimize the plan hatched by Big Telecom giants and their army of lobbyists to selectively slow down Internet services for users.”

With Obama’s statement putting pressure on the FCC to come down on the side of Internet users, positive rules should be announced by the end of this year.

OpenMedia has joined with over 60 organizations from 25 nations to launch Big Telecom vs. The World, bringing 180,000 people from around the world have signed on to the campaign. It was part of a wider effort that has seen over 5 million speak out to stop Big Telecom’s Internet slow lane, and Internet users can speak out at https://BigTelecomvsTheWorld.org/

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