Fresh off yet another victory in the halls of an FCC that not too long ago was a mortal enemy, Comcast and Charter Communications are asking Congress to make the agency's takedown of Title II internet regulations law.
Yes indeed, with President Trump’s approval at historic lows, and the Republican-led Congress viewed in an even less favorable light, the nation’s two top cable companies are asking lawmakers to approach a net neutrality decision that can, at best, be described as questionably popular with the public.
“It’s now time for all of us to take advantage of this moment in time and end the cycle of regulatory ping pong we’ve been trapped in for over a decade and put this issue to rest once and for all,” said Comcast’s top regulatory executive, David Cohen, in a blogged statement this afternoon.
“And there’s a simple way to do this—we really must have bipartisan congressional legislation to permanently preserve and solidify net neutrality protections for consumers and to provide ongoing certainty to ISPs and edge providers alike,” added Cohen, seemingly hinting at a fantasy scenario by which Democratic lawmakers might actually participate.
Added Charter: “Such legislation would provide permanent regulatory assurance and create an environment that allows for more long-term planning that will help us continue to provide even better broadband across our country.”
As expected, the Republican-led FCC voted today to preempt the Title II net neutrality laws put on the books two years ago, when the commission was under the leadership of Democrat Tom Wheeler.
And as expected, both Comcast and Charter promised not to take advantage of their rediscovered freedom by throttling the internet or establishing paid prioritization. Well, at least they don’t plan to right now, anyway.
“As I wrote yesterday, reiterating a consistent public commitment from Comcast, we will not block, throttle, or discriminate against lawful content on the Internet; we will be fully transparent with respect to our practices; and we have not entered into any paid prioritization arrangements, and we have no plans to do so,” Cohen said.
Added Charter: “Importantly, Charter doesn’t impose data caps or engage in usage-based billing, meaning our customers can engage with the content they want as much as they want.”