FCC: Save the free and open Internet

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The DC Circuit Court of Appeals' ruling in Verizon v. FCC just tossed out critical government protections against discrimination by the broadband companies we rely on to access the web. A handful of major corporations — Verizon, AT&T, Comcast, and Time Warner Cable — now have total control over what we're able to see and do online.

New Federal Communications Commission chair Tom Wheeler has the power to stop them — Wheeler can take action today to reverse the Bush-era rule that treats the Internet differently depending on the wires we use to access it. Please take action now urging Chairman Wheeler to correct the agency's past mistakes and reclassify broadband as a telecommunications service subject to rigorous consumer protections.

Here's the letter we'll send to FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler on your behalf. You can add a personal comment using the box in the form.

Dear Chairman Wheeler,

The free and open Internet is critical to our communities' ability to access and share information without a corporate filter, and to effectively organize for racial and social justice. And as the FCC's National Broadband Plan acknowledges, high-speed Internet is an essential service that all Americans need in order to perform basic tasks, from applying for a job, to doing schoolwork, finding a home, and running a business.

With the DC Circuit Court's dismantling of your agency's 2010 Open Internet Order, which provided imperfect but vital protections for web users against discrimination by our Internet service providers (ISPs), it is urgent that the FCC take immediate and decisive action to protect the public from these corporations' predatory business practices.

The FCC exists to serve the public, not the corporate bottom line, and the court in Verizon v. FCC made clear that your agency has the authority to regulate interstate communications. I urge you to act on that authority now to reverse the Bush Administration's deeply flawed decision to deregulate cable broadband, which made the Open Internet Order unsustainable from the start and just handed Verizon a major victory in its fight to privatize the web.

The ball is squarely in the FCC's court: please take action to reclassify broadband as a telecommunications service now.


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