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Network neutrality in Congress, round 3: Fight!
Tech Business
Written by Daniel   
Monday, 03 August 2009 10:56

   Ed Markey (D-MA) is a big fan of "third time's the charm." He has introduced his plan to legislate network neutrality into a third consecutive Congress, and he has a message for ISPs: upgrade your infrastructure and don't even think about blocking or degrading traffic.

By Nate Anderson | Last updated August 3, 2009 8:00 AM CT

The war over network neutrality has been fought in the last two Congresses, and last week's introduction of the "Internet Freedom Preservation Act of 2009" (PDF) means that legislators will duke it out a third time. Should the bill pass, Internet service providers will not be able to "block, interfere with, discriminate against, impair, or degrade" access to any lawful content from any lawful application or device.

ISPs would also be forbidden to "impose a charge" on content providers that goes "beyond the end-user charges associated with providing the service to such a provider." In other words, AT&T doesn't have to let Google "use its pipes for free," but it can only collect the money is owed through customary peering and transit arrangements.

The bill was introduced in the House by Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA)—who introduced similar legislation during the last Congressional session. During the Congressional session before that, Markey pushed network neutrality as an amendment rather than a standalone bill. Neither method has yet been successful.

"The Internet has thrived and revolutionized business and the economy precisely because it started as an open technology," said co-sponsor Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA) in a statement. "This bill will ensure that the non-discriminatory framework that allows the Internet to thrive and competition on the Web to flourish is preserved at a time when our economy needs it the most."  [ARS Technica...]    [Comments...]
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