MWC 2015: FCC Chief defends net neutrality rules

The Chief of the American Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has defended the new open internet rules from the telecom operators who believe the Government has too much control.

A few days after the new internet regulations were approved by the FCC, its chairman Tom Wheeler appeared before telecom industry leaders at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona.

The new internet rules are also known under the term ‘net neutrality’ meaning companies should not pay telecoms for internet ‘fast lanes’ (bigger speeds and more bandwidth), and that all users should be able to visit sites at the same speeds.

It’s the principle that Internet service providers and governments should treat all data on the Internet equally, not discriminating or charging differentially by user, content, site, platform, application, type of attached equipment, or mode of communication.

Net neutrality has its supporters, but it has its critics, too.

“This is no more regulating the Internet than the first amendment regulates free speech in our country,” Wheeler, himself a former technology lobbyist and entrepreneur, told an audience at the congress, the world’s biggest mobile telecom fair, Rawstory.com reports.

“We remain absolutely steadfast, opposed to intergovernmental structures that seek to impose their will on how the Internet operates. We are for an open Internet.”

“We want network operators to have a revenue stream from consumer services that is unchanged the day after the regulation goes into effect,” he said.

Columbia University media law professor Tim Wu came up with the term ‘net neutrality’ back in 2003.