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Senators Vote 52 to 47 In Favor of Net Neutrality

The Senate has spoken! Net neutrality is here to stay, at least for a while. 

On Wednesday, US Senators voted 52 to 47 to stop the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) from repealing net neutrality. 

The vote showed that the Senators are keen on retaining the rules that prevented internet providers from slowing down or even blocking their users' access to websites. It also helps protect customers from extra charges that internet providers may impose to speed up content delivery.

Net neutrality was implemented three years ago under the administration of former President Barack Obama. After his term ended and a new President was named, the FCC voted to repeal net neutrality

So when three Republicans joined the vote of the 49 Democrats today, it came as a shock to many who were thinking otherwise. The three Republicans include John Kennedy of Louisiana, Susan Collins of Maine, and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska.

Despite today's victory, it looks like the battle is far from over. The next step still lies with the House where GOP leaders will have to be taking matters into their own hands. There's no certainty this will be the case, as of the moment. 

But even if Congress gives the legislation a clearance, it will still need to be signed by President Donald Trump for it to go into law. And ever since, President Trump has been very critical of net neutrality.  

The argument of Democrats is that net neutrality is needed to ensure an equal treatment of all internet content. Without net neutrality in place, consumers may end up paying a higher price for slower service. There is also the threat that certain websites or apps may not be accessed. 

To this, Republicans refute that the rules of net neutrality are heavy-handed and are an example of overregulation by the government. They believe this issue is being used by Democrats to gain the attention of the younger voting public. 

Of course, this is a claim that Democrats have since denied. 

Source: Reuters

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  1. Feel-good vote that will go nowhere. The House won't touch it, and the President would veto it.

  2. "Of course, this is a claim that Democrats have since denied."

    Care to substantiate claims like this? Who said it? When / in what context? It is being widely reported that this is an intentional part of their platform.

    The NYT framed remarks by Sen. Chuck Shumer (D-NY, Minority Leader) thusly: "net neutrality is part of a three-legged stool — internet access, gun control and marijuana legalization — they are leaning on to entice young voters to engage in the midterm elections. Such voters broadly side with Democrats, even though they are notoriously complacent in nonpresidential election years."


  3. This is good but it still needs to clear the house.

  4. "The argument of Democrats is that net neutrality is needed to ensure an equal treatment of all internet content."

    That's a load of crap.

    For as long as I can remember, it's been the government either directly or indirectly waging war on internet freedom and neutrality.

    Corporations are actually the least guily in this regard, given that wikipedia has entire articles worth of federal and state censorship as well as various surveillance laws/programs.

    As of this year, even the Rhode Island State Senate even wants to institute a "porn tax" in flagrant violation of "an equal treatment of all internet content," bringing us one step closer to communist tier content firewalls and a gestapo tier ban on VPNs.

    But of course, faux NN activists never have the courage to say a word about any of that.

    What's more, PPN cheering on NN is painfully hypocritical, as ISPs just want the right to exercise editorial control over their private enterprise the exact same way comments are edited here.

    The only way to overturn their constitutional right to free speech and restore true internet neutrality is to broaden first amendment protections such that they'd now apply to private institutions, and then start cleaning house on all that pesky government censorship/surveillance.

    Of course, that would universally piss off everyone except genuine advocates of a neutral and ever-evolving internet, seeing as both the government and private entities, as well as censor-happy progressives crusading against hate speech, all want to censor and surveil what they don't like.

    And that's why net neutrality is a pipe dream, because only a relative handful of people actually know and care enough about the internet to even see past the talking points, let alone form and live by an even remotely consistent opinion on net neutrality.

    Personally, I'd prefer to just try the absolute speech/e-anarchy/street justice/"let Jobs sort 'em out" approach where platforms for public discussion (like this one) keep their grubby mitts off my words and ideas and stick to being a mere conduit facilitating their expression.

    But if you're gonna take the opposite approach that private entities should have control over their platforms when it comes to censoring speech, then spare me your crocodile tears over the death of net neutrality and potentially getting extorted by even bigger assholes.

    I've no sympathy for the "rights for me but not for you" crowd.

    Either we all have the right to be heard without interference or we don't, so pick a side and live by it.

    And if the side you're taking is against the ISPs' right to editorial discretion, you damn well better not exercise it yourself if you want people to take your position seriously.

    Because that's the thing about principles, they're not projectable or negotiable, but you are expected to live by them before holding anyone else to the same standard.

  5. Democrats don't agree on anything now. The progressive wing and establishment wing are fighting over party control. They vote the way Nancy tells them to vote. Nancy gives permission to a handful in red areas to vote with Republicans on popular issues when she doesn't need their votes. NN is just a wedge issue to help them stay in power. The vote does not reflect each member's personal beliefs. If it did, Nancy would punish members for voting the other way by taking away committee assignments and campaign funding.
    It's just politics.

  6. "Net neutrality is here to stay, at least for a while."

    What makes you say that? The vote has no effect whatsoever, as other posters note, unless also passed in the House and signed by Trump, neither of which will happen.

    1. NN is here to stay until June 11.
      As reported here on May 10.
      Nothing has changed.

  7. On Net Neutrality - Democrats urge U.S. House vote on net neutrality rules as end nears (Reuters)https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-internet/democrats-urge-u-s-house-vote-on-net-neutrality-rules-as-end-nears-idUSKCN1J32XH

  8. Try neutrality died today. Good riddance!
    More innovation and choices will follow.
    Binge video watchers will pay their fair share of internet costs, via ISP speed tiers or video streaming fast lane costs passed on to them.

    1. "Try neutrality died today. Good riddance!
      More innovation and choices will follow."

      The only innovations that net neutrality held back were ISP's doing double-charging scams, and also micromanaging which web sites and streaming services you use.

      In other words, the type of innovations that a used car salesman would cook up. You would have us believe that net neutrality has held back Edison's, but no one is buying it.

    2. "Binge video watchers will pay their fair share of internet costs"

      Sorry, wrong again. Under net neutrality, binge video watchers pay exactly their fair share and no more and no less. The net neutrality rules in no way prevented providers from charging based on the amount of data consumed.

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