iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — After the Federal Communications Commission voted Thursday along party lines to repeal net neutrality regulations imposed in 2015, the reaction was swift from technology companies, internet service providers, lawmakers and other stakeholders in both support and opposition to the move.
Critics of the vote believe that internet service providers might take advantage of the freedom to prioritize certain types of web traffic which could ultimately have an effect on speeds or pricing. Supporters have argued that removing the regulations will spur innovation and competition.
ABC News has compiled notable responses to Thursday’s FCC vote:
Opposition to the FCC vote:
“We remain committed to the net neutrality policies that enjoy overwhelming public support, have been approved by the courts, and are working well for every part of the internet economy,” a spokesperson said. “We will work with other net neutrality supporters large and small to promote strong, enforceable protections.”
“We’re disappointed in the decision to gut #NetNeutrality protections that ushered in an unprecedented era of innovation, creativity & civic engagement. This is the beginning of a longer legal battle. Netflix stands w/ innovators, large & small, to oppose this misguided FCC order.”
“The @FCC’s vote to gut #NetNeutrality rules is a body blow to innocation and free expression. We will continue our fight to defend the open Internet and reverse the misguided decision.”
Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook chief operating officer
“Today’s decision from the Federal Communications Commission to end net neutrality is disappointing and harmful. An open internet is critical for new ideas and economic opportunity – and internet providers shouldn’t be able to decide what people can see online or charge more for certain websites. We’re ready to work with members of Congress and others to help make the internet free and open for everyone.”
New York state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman
“I will sue to stop the FCC’s illegal rollback of #netneutrality. New Yorkers and all Americans deserve a free and open internet.”
Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass.
“Don’t let @AjitPaiFCC fool you. The ONLY people benefitting from the repeal of #NetNeutrality are massive corporations that are already reaping in enormous profits. They want to end the internet as we know it to create a digital oligarchy that serves the wealthy few.”
Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif.
“Today the FCC voted along party lines to repeal net neutrality. It is outrageous that they ruled in favor of multi-billion-dollar broadband companies over the interests of consumers. Americans deserve a fair and open internet. “
Support for the FCC vote:
“We commend Chairman Pai for his leadership. Today’s action does not mark the ‘end of the Internet as we know it; rather it heralds in a new era of light regulation that will benefit consumers.” – David Cohen, senior executive vice president and chief diversity officer
“For more than a decade, under both Republican and Democratic Administrations, AT&T has consistently made clear that we provide broadband service in an open and transparent way. In short, the internet will continue to work tomorrow just as it always has… We continue to support a legislative solution and will work with any interested members of Congress to achieve that solution.” – Bob Quinn, senior executive vice president of external and legislative affairs.
United States Telecom Association
“Today, the future of our open, thriving internet has been secured. The nation’s top consumer protection agency now has jurisdiction over fairness and neutrality across the internet, ensuring consistent rules apply to all players, including the most powerful online companies… It’s a great day for consumers and our innovation economy.” – Jonathan Spalter, CEO
Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation
“Now that the FCC has acted to reverse an ill-conceived regulatory scheme, Congress must take the lead… I favor Congress enacting net neutrality protections and establishing sensible limits on the power of regulators. I call on Democrats and Republicans who want to preserve a free and open internet to work together on permanent consumer protections.”
Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., chairwoman of the Communications and Technology subcommittee
“The FCC’s vote today will preserve the open and dynamic Internet the American people have known since the early 1990s. Now, the table is set for Congress to provide clear, permanent rules through a bipartisan legislative solution.”
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