Barbara van Schewick's blog

FCC’s rushed, technically flawed decision will harm the economy

Today the FCC Commissioners voted 3-2 to eliminate longstanding net neutrality protections, reclassify internet service providers as ‘information services’ under Title I of the Communications Act, and ban states from enacting their own net neutrality protections.  

Here is my statement:

"Today’s FCC vote eliminates all net neutrality protections without a replacement.

T-Mobile's Binge On Violates Key Net Neutrality Principles

In November 2015, T-Mobile, the nation’s third largest provider of mobile Internet access, launched a new service called Binge On that offers “unlimited” video streaming. T-Mobile customers on qualifying plans can stream video from the 42 providers currently in the program – Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Amazon Video, and others – without using their data plans, a practice known as zero-rating.

What to look for in this week's network neutrality announcement

This week, FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler will circulate a draft of the Open Internet rules to his fellow Commissioners. According to news reports, the Chairman will propose to reclassify Internet access as a “telecommunications service” and adopt network neutrality rules under Title II of the Communications Act. If that is true, this is excellent news and a vital step in the right direction. After the D.C. Circuit’s decision last January, this is the only way to adopt meaningful network neutrality rules that will be upheld in court. The FCC will vote on the proposal on February 26th.

Seven Reasons the New GOP Bill Will Not Give Us Net Neutrality

After a year of debates on network neutrality, the GOP has finally joined the party. Through a draft bill released this month and congressional hearings last week, Republicans have taken a step in the direction of supporting network neutrality. That’s a good thing, and moves them closer to the existing consensus. Roughly four million Americans submitted comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) calling for real network neutrality last year, and polls show that both Republicans and Democrats overwhelmingly support a ban on fast lanes.

The FCC changed course on network neutrality. Here is why you should care.

Wednesday's press reports of the new network neutrality rules proposed by FCC Chairman Wheeler have been met with anger and confusion. According to the Wall Street Journal, "[r]egulators are proposing new rules on Internet traffic that would allow broadband providers to charge companies a premium for access to their fastest lanes. […] [T]he proposal would […] allow providers to give preferential treatment to traffic from some content providers, as long as such arrangements are available on 'commercially reasonable' terms for all interested content companies. Whether the terms are commercially reasonable would be decided by the FCC on a case-by-case basis."

Network Non-Discrimination and Quality of Service

Cross posted from

Over the past ten years, the debate over “network neutrality” has remained one of the central debates in Internet policy. Governments all over the world have been investigating whether legislative or regulatory action is needed to limit the ability of providers of Internet access services to interfere with the applications, content and services on their networks.

Is Verizon Wireless illegally blocking Google Wallet? It’s time for the FCC to investigate

The original post can be found on the website.

Two weeks ago, various news outlets reported that Verizon Wireless’s new Galaxy Nexus phone, an Android device that went on sale last Thursday, will not support Google Wallet, Google’s mobile payment application. Based on what we know from press reports, it seems that Verizon Wireless is violating the open-devices and open-applications conditions in its legal licenses for part of the 700 MHz spectrum (the so-called “C-Block”) over which the company’s LTE network operates. There is, however, great uncertainty about what exactly is going on.


Subscribe to RSS - Barbara van Schewick's blog