WHAT THE FCC IS DOING
The FCC is poised to undo the radical step it took in 2015 of classifying broadband Internet access services as “telecommunications services” under Title II of the Communications Act and restore the prior “information service” classification and light regulatory touch it had always previously applied.
HOW THIS ACTION WILL BENEFIT ISPs
Restoration of light-touch regulation under Title I will immediately empower broadband Internet service providers to invest and innovate free from the harmful overhang of utility-style rate regulation. Removal of the threat of unreasonable and potentially arbitrary enforcement action and rate regulation will bring greater certainty that investments and development of new features and services will pay off.
HOW THIS ACTION WILL NOT HARM INTERNET OPENNESS
This action will have no impact on Internet openness. During the entire course of the “Net Neutrality” debate, ACA and its members have continued to support an open Internet and the ability of their consumers and Internet edge providers to freely reach one another. The only question has been how to achieve that objective in a manner that encourages Internet investment and innovation by all market participants.
WHY THE FCC's 2015 DECISION WAS WRONG/HARMFUL
In ACA’s view, application of Title II regulation to ISPs exclusively was an unjustified and unwarranted mistake that imposed burdensome common carrier regulation that was totally unnecessary to protect the open Internet against threats, real or imagined.
The FCC’s 2015 mistake was not costless. ACA members incurred additional costs and delayed or deferred rolling out new features or services because they could not afford to deal with potential complaints or enforcement actions. Fear of after-the-fact rate regulation caused them to hold back plant upgrades and investments. Customers lost out on service innovations and new capabilities and their communities lost out from lack of upgraded plant.