Feeds

FTC sides against Net Neutrality

Let God sort 'em out

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

The Federal Trade Commission has cautioned against regulations that would ensure telecom providers treat all internet traffic the same way.

In a report released late Wednesday, the FTC's Internet Access Task Force accepted arguments posed by cable and phone companies that government intervention in Net Neutrality is unnecessary, as competition would prevent internet providers from taking advantage of customers.

“This report recommends that policy makers proceed with caution in the evolving, dynamic industry of broadband Internet access, which generally is moving toward more – not less – competition," chairman Deborah Majoras said. "In the absence of significant market failure or demonstrated consumer harm, policy makers should be particularly hesitant to enact new regulation in this area.”

The report concludes that allowing companies such as AT&T and Comcast to break internet traffic into tiers for data prioritization and exclusive deals can benefit consumers.

Majoras went on to say before a lawyers' group Wednesday that the agency was unaware of any market failure or consumer harm in the high-speed internet market.

In unrelated news - wink, wink, nudge, nudge - union group Communication Workers of America released a state-by-state report Monday that showed US internet connection speeds are far behind other industrialized nations.

Telecoms applauded the FTC report.

"The Federal Trade Commission report confirms that there is no problem to fix," Verizon executive VP Tom Tauke said. "Proposals to impose new regulation actually threaten further advancements in broadband internet conections. That hurts consumers by denying them new and better services."

The FTC noted that three federal agencies — the Federal Communications Commission, the Department of Justice, and the FTC — have jurisdiction to address any future broadband internet access issues. The FTC vows to to "vigorously" enforce antitrust and consumer protection laws.

In further unrelated news, last week lawmakers blasted the FTC for failing to implement legislation passed as far back as 2003 to protect consumers against credit errors.

Net neutrality advocates caution that without regulations, internet access providers will slow down or block traffic for certain content. Internet service providers such as Google and Yahoo worry that cable operators will discriminate against their data — particularly as the operators begin to produce similar services.

Last year the FCC approved a AT&T merger with BellSouth, making the company control more than half the telephone and internet access lines in the US. To win the merger's approval, AT&T agreed to to maintain net neutrality with high speed internet traffic for two years. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Don't call it throttling: Ericsson 'priority' tech gives users their own slice of spectrum
Actually it's a nifty trick - at least you'll pay for what you get
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Three floats Jolla in Hong Kong: Says Sailfish is '3rd option'
Network throws hat into ring with Linux-powered handsets
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
EE: STILL Blighty's best mobe network, says 'Frappucino' Moore
Fresh round of network stats fisticuffs possibly on the cards here
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
Tech city types developing 'Google Glass for the blind' app
An app and service where other people 'see' for you
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
prev story

Whitepapers

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 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.