Sunday 18th November 2018

Illinois officials react to FCC’s net neutrality vote

Illinois officials react to FCC’s net neutrality vote

FILE - Net Neutrality
Demonstrators rally in support of net neutrality outside a Verizon store in New York on December 7, 2017.

Mary Altaffer | The Herald Journal

ILLINOIS NEWS NETWORK

While Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan promises an appeal, an Illinois U.S. representative says lifting federal net neutrality rules will hold internet service providers accountable by fostering more competition.

The FCC voted to repeal net neutrality regulations Thursday 3 to 2. Madigan and other state AGs followed up with a promise to appeal. She said the move “undermines the public interest by putting our free and open internet at risk.”

Thursday’s vote, Madigan’s office said in a statement, means “internet service providers will be allowed to interfere with customers’ use of the internet by blocking or slowing down access to content. Providers will now be able to favor their own content over third-party sites by slowing down access, or charging content providers for priority treatment or access to an internet ‘fast lane.’”

U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, said under the current standards, his constituents in rural areas already have problems.

“I get calls from constituents who are supposed to be served by the lone broadband provider in rural areas that are actually subsidized by the federal government and the texts I get from my friends down there are, ‘They’re supposed provide us at this speed, but they don’t,’” Davis said.

For those complaining about a lack of ISP competition, Davis said talk to local officials.

“You should stand up to to your local officials and demand more choices,” Davis said. “That is what will get you better service, better speed, more options and cheaper prices.”

He argued that’s where the real battle for more choice should take place, not the federal government.

Some consumers may worry that the new policy would result in fewer choices. Davis said it’s the opposite.

“You’re going to continue to see growth, better access, better speeds, more competition,” he said.

Before the FCC’s order can be entered officially to the Federal Register, the language of the measure must pass through several federal agencies to test for transparency and other requirements.

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