Net Neutrality Protection Legislation Introduced In California

After the FCC voted to end rules that prevented internet providers from speeding up, slowing down, or blocking traffic from certain websites and apps, San Francisco State Senator Scott Wiener wasn't happy with AJit Pai's decision. 

So he decided to do something about it and SB-822 is the result.

Under existing law, the Public Utilities Commission has regulatory authority over public utilities, including telephone corporations. Pursuant to its existing authority, the commission supervises administration of the state’s telecommunications universal service programs. The Digital Infrastructure and Video Competition Act of 2006 establishes a procedure for the issuance of state franchises for the provision of video service, defined to include cable service and open-video systems, administered by the commission.

The bill would state the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation to effectuate net neutrality in California utilizing the state’s regulatory powers and to prevent Internet service providers from engaging in practices inconsistent with net neutrality, including through 4 described means.

"The bill takes a few different approaches; defining blocking, or slowing a website as an unfair business practice. Using the contracting power of the state to get internet service providers to comply with net neutrality," Weiner said.

Weiner said the Golden State does not have any regulations on net neutrality, because the state deferred to federal rules. 

"We need to step up for California and adopt net neutrality in our state. Other states should do the same and are trying to do the same. Let's take back the internet." 

Weiner says he and a lot of other lawmakers weren't happy with the FCC's decision to do away with the rules back in December. 

"The FCC betrayed American democracy by getting rid of net neutrality. The internet is so fundamental to 21st century democracy. We should be deciding for ourselves what websites we go to, not having other people decide for us based on who's paying more."

You can read the full text of the bill on the legislature's website here.

Photo: Getty Images

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