The battle over net neutrality finally came to an end yesterday when the Federal Communications Commission ruled 3-2 to treat the Internet like a public utility, preventing Internet service providers from creating so-called “fast lanes” where they charge content providers to deliver their information faster.
At certain points last year, it looked as though the FCC and its Chairman Tom Wheeler were going to bow down to companies like Comcast and AT&T. But after a grass-roots effort on the part of advocacy groups, social media, and even President Obama, the FCC received over four million comments in support of net neutrality.
During a speech regarding the ruling yesterday, Wheeler said:
“The Internet is the most powerful and pervasive platform on the planet. It’s simply too important to be left without rules and without a referee on the field. Think about it. The Internet has replaced the functions of the telephone and the post office. The Internet has redefined commerce, and as the outpouring from 4 million Americans has demonstrated, the Internet is the ultimate vehicle for free expression.”
Watch Wheeler’s full comments from yesterday.