Trend Watch

'Net Neutrality' Rule Overturned

Lookups spike after FCC decision

Net neutrality spiked on December 14, 2017, following the vote by the Federal Communications Commission to reverse its policy which required that high-speed Internet service be classified as a public utility, like phone lines.

Net neutrality, unsurprisingly, is a recently coined term, dating to 2003 and first used in an article by Columbia law professor Tim Wu.

: the idea, principle, or requirement that Internet service providers should or must treat all Internet data as the same regardless of its kind, source, or destination

Following the repeal of this rule, broadband providers would be allowed to offer faster connections to websites and customers who will pay more money, possibly creating a “fast lane” and “slow lane” of Internet service. It could also permit providers to block or limit websites or content. Judicial challenges, regulation at the state level, or federal laws passed by Congress could restore the policy.

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