The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday approved regulating the Internet as a utility in a 3-2 partisan vote, handing a big victory to Net neutrality proponents who lobbied for a decade for tough rules to protect consumers.
The FCC’s action forbids telecom companies from blocking websites, and slowing or speeding up some Internet traffic. This means that all Internet streams should be treated the same, or neutrally, without preferences.
The FCC also voted to make it easier for municipally run Internet providers to expand and compete with Comcast and other private telecom companies, a move lauded by activist groups.
“Some states have created thickets of red tape to limit competition,” said FCC Chairman Thomas Wheeler, who spearheaded the changes. “What we’re doing today is cutting away the red tape.”
A panel of three judges on the United States Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York overturned the FCC’s indecency policy calling it “unconstitutionally vague” and stating the policy has “chilled protected speech.” Alrighty then.
So now if Joan Rivers, Bono, Mel Gibson, Alec Baldwin, Colin Farrell, Paris Hilton, the kids from South Park or any other foul-mouthed celebutard drop the F-bomb or their pants on live television that’s just honkey dorey. It appears this would cover “wardrobe malfunctions” ala the infamous Janet Jackson nip-slip as well.