FCC Turns Internet Into a Public Utility

The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday voted to change how the Internet is regulated in the most consequential decision of its kind since the Internet’s creation. By a 3-2 vote along party lines, FCC commissioners endorsed “net neutrality.” Now Internet service providers will be prohibited from creating “fast lanes” for certain content providers, e.g. Comcast speeding up Netflix over YouTube. In layman’s terms, the Internet will now be regulated as a public utility along the lines of electricity or water. “The Internet is simply too important to allow broadband providers to be making the rules,” Chairman Tom Wheeler said. “This is no more a plan to regulate the Internet than the First Amendment is to regulate free speech.” The FCC heard 4 million comments in the lead-up to today’s vote.