AT&T Asks Employees and Their Families to Protest Net Neutrality

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Facing defeat on a net neutrality proposal, AT&T pulled out all the stops this week to convince the Federal Communications Commission not to begin a process that will limit telecom giants’ ability to regulate their Internet networks. While other companies like Verizon and Qwest Communications also lobbied heavily against the net neutrality rules, AT&T went one step further and encouraged all 300,000 of its employees to email FCC commissioners and express their opposition.

AT&T’s top lobbyist, Jim Cicconi, criticized FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski’s effort to rewrite federal rules on how Internet service providers (ISPs) can manage traffic on their networks. ISPs sometimes restrict the flow of Internet communications that consume too much bandwidth, much to the consternation of consumers.
Despite the lobbying, the FCC voted unanimously on Thursday to proceed with the new rules, which now will undergo a public comment period until January 14. After that the FCC will review the feedback before making a final decision sometime next spring.
Telecom Firms Face Net-Neutrality Defeat (by Cecilia Kang, Washington Post)
FCC Commissioners Support Open Internet Rule (by John Poirier and Sinead Carew, Reuters)


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