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12/01/2017

No, the FCC is not killing the Internet

Americans cherish a free and open Internet — and rightly so. It has revolutionized nearly every aspect of our lives. So, it's no surprise that the recent announcement that the Federal Communications Commission will vote Dec. 14 to restore Internet freedom has been met with strong (and colorful) reactions.

But, unfortunately, far too many are intentionally fanning the false flames of fear. The apocalyptic rhetoric is quite something — even by Washington standards. If the FCC were ending the Internet as we know it, I would be pretty fired up, too. But it is not.

If the phony claims are to be believed, the FCC is about to unleash a Mad Max version of the Internet in which Internet service providers are free to operate without any legal restraint. One common meme suggests that by reversing the Obama-era FCC's 2015 decision to apply Title II regulations to the Internet, the FCC will remove the one bulwark stopping ISPs from balkanizing the Internet — from blocking websites, creating fast lanes or discriminating against content.

It's hard to decide where to begin in debunking these myths. But this is an important issue that millions of Americans care passionately about. So, let me make a few points.