State Reps. Thomas West (D-Canton) and Dan Ramos (D-Lorain) today announced the introduction of House Concurrent Resolution (HCR) 18, which urges Congress, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and the president to uphold existing net neutrality rules. Net Neutrality is the principle that internet service providers (ISPs) must treat all data equally. Under net neutrality, no user, platform or website can be accessed faster or slower than another.
“Without Net Neutrality, your Internet Service Provider could arbitrarily block whatever websites it didn't want you to access,” said West. “Eliminating Net Neutrality also means that your ISP could purposefully slow down access to certain websites or services and force you to pay extra to access certain websites or services. The elimination of Net Neutrality would allow for price gouging by ISPs and would stifle the incredible innovation that the internet promotes – the sort of innovation that has added trillions of dollars to our economy and created millions of jobs.”
Numerous leaders in the tech sector, as well as the FCC’s own Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, have expressed vehement opposition to the proposed changes to Net Neutrality. While Congress has the authority to enact legislation protecting Net Neutrality, they have yet to take actions to do so.
“Net Neutrality protects the free market,” said Ramos. “Without Net Neutrality, ISPs could force companies to pay huge fees or risk having their website slowed down dramatically. A tiny number of massive companies would be able to bend the rules in their favor, hurting other emerging markets and limiting competition that relies on a level playing field.”
HCR 18 was referred to the House Federalism and Interstate Relations Committee and currently awaits its initial hearings.