FCC won’t delay vote, says net neutrality supporters are “desperate”
Pai says FTC will protect consumers—but FTC could lose its regulatory authority.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai says that net neutrality rules aren't needed because the Federal Trade Commission can protect consumers from broadband providers. But a pending court case involving AT&T could strip the FTC of its regulatory authority over AT&T and similar ISPs.
A few dozen consumer advocacy groups and the City of New York urged Pai to delay the net neutrality-killing vote in a letter today. If the FCC eliminates its rules and the court case goes AT&T's way, there would be a "'regulatory gap' that would leave consumers utterly unprotected," the letter said.
When contacted by Ars, Pai's office issued this statement in response to the letter:>This is just evidence that supporters of heavy-handed Internet regulations are becoming more desperate by the day as their effort to defeat Chairman Pai's plan to restore Internet freedom has stalled. The vote will proceed as scheduled on December 14.
Consumer advocacy group Public Knowledge is not satisfied by Pai's response.
"Forty organizations ask the Federal Communications Commission why, if they are relying on the FTC to protect consumers, they do not do the prudent thing and wait until the cloud over FTC jurisdiction is resolved," Public Knowledge Senior VP Harold Feld told Ars. "The FCC's official response is name calling. This tells anyone interested who is 'fear mongering' and who really has the interests of consumers at heart."
AT&T vs. the FTChttps://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/12/fcc-chair-refuses-to-delay-net-neutrality-vote-despite-pending-court-case/