July 21, 2014—The FCC has received nearly 800,000 comments regarding its proposed changes to secure an ‘open internet'' according to the New York Times.
The change in rules was prompted by a January decision by a Federal Court, in a suit brought by Verizon, which forced the Commission to change its approach to regulating the Internet. Tom Wheeler, chairman of the F.C.C., in response to the court ruling, proposed changes that would explicitly allow “commercially reasonable” deals, that, according to critics, would open the door to a ‘two-tier'' Internet of fast and slow lanes, with affluent companies and households enjoying premium service and everyone else fighting traffic. The Times calls this a ‘death knell for the open Internet and its democratic ethos of net neutrality.''
The comment period, which originally ended on July 16, was extended to last Friday July 18; however, a second window for ‘reply comments'' will be in effect until September 10. The F.C.C. is expected to make a decision on open Internet rules by the end of 2014 or early 2015.