Feeds

State officials join net neutrality scrum

Back net giants ahead of Senate vote

Boost IT visibility and business value

Two US states have been dragged into the net neutrality battle as the dispute widens to state-level officials. Later this week a Senate panel will vote on net neutrality legislation, and two state attorneys general have lent their support to a neutral internet.

In a letter to the US Senate Commerce Committee, New York attorney general Eliot Spitzer has backed Google, eBay and other internet companies who are calling for a ban on ISPs cutting deals with some web firms to give them preferential access to users over their networks.

California's attorney general Bill Lockyer has also backed the pro-neutrality side of the debate. A spokesman said although Lockyer did not endorse any specific bill, he supports net neutrality principles in general.

The battle in the US is between those, largely Republicans, who want telecoms firms to be able to cut deals with internet firms to give them faster, preferential access to customers homes, and those who do not.

Telcos argue they are entitled to charge firms for this treatment because they have invested so much in broadband network infrastructure. Others, largely Democrats, argue that the internet is based on a principle of equality of information and that telcos should be banned from offering improved information delivery service to those who can pay for it.

A number of bills and amendments on the topic are currently under consideration by US lawmakers. The Communications, Consumers' Choice and broadband Deployment Act is due to be debated this week, but the proposed Freedom Preservation Act is likely to be offered as an amendment to it, outlawing the cutting of special data delivery deals.

"Congress must not permit the ongoing consolidation of the telecommunications industry to work radical and perhaps irrevocable change in the free and neutral nature of the internet," wrote Spitzer in his letter.

US states elect their attorney generals, who have party affiliations. Spitzer is a Democrat and is running for election as governor of New York this autumn.

See: Spitzer's letter (3 page/118KB PDF)

Copyright © 2006, OUT-LAW.com

OUT-LAW.COM is part of international law firm Pinsent Masons.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
Microsoft: We're making ONE TRUE WINDOWS to rule us all
Enterprise, Windows still power firm's shaky money-maker
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.