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Thread: U.S. Appeals Court kills net neutrality

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    Just when you thought it was safe to go back on the Information Superhighway........

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    Think it's going to be fucked this time.

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    John Oliver tackles net neutrality again, crashes FCC comments site—again

    arstechnica.com
    John Oliver tackles net neutrality again, crashes FCC comments site—again
    Jon Brodkin - 5/8/2017, 8:30 AM
    5-7 minutes
    Saving net neutrality —
    Oliver helps lead protest against dismantling of Title II net neutrality rules.

    Comedian John Oliver has once again asked his viewers to fight on behalf of net neutrality, and the Federal Communications Commission website wasn't able to handle the immediate influx of angry comments.

    On HBO's Last Week Tonight, Oliver yesterday announced a new URL, gofccyourself.com, that redirects to the FCC proposal to eliminate net neutrality rules. (Clicking "Express" is the easiest way to submit a comment.) The comments website promptly crashed, making it difficult or impossible to file comments last night and this morning. The comments site has started working, but only intermittently.

    Oliver first tackled net neutrality in June 2014, causing the FCC comments site to crash. The site struggled again later that year as the net neutrality debate winded down, forcing the commission to extend the comments deadline. The commission's tech team has significantly upgraded the website and back-end systems since then, but the influence of John Oliver was still too much to handle without any downtime.

    There are now about 80,000 comments on the proposal, more than double the amount reported on Friday. The previous net neutrality debate drew 4 million comments, but there's still plenty of time to break that record. Right now, comments are being taken on the draft text of a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that will be voted on May 18. As we've previously written, there will be another three months for public comments after that preliminary vote, and the FCC will make a final decision sometime after that.
    John Oliver vs. Ajit Pai and Verizon

    When Oliver tackled net neutrality in 2014, he called then-FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler a "dingo" while the commission debated whether ISPs should be allowed to charge Web services for Internet "fast lanes." Wheeler and his Democratic majority eventually issued rules outlawing paid fast lanes.

    Now, the debate is over whether net neutrality rules should exist at all. At a minimum, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, a Republican, intends to reverse the decision to reclassify ISPs as common carriers under Title II of the Communications Act. Pai hasn't committed to imposing rules against blocking and throttling, and his proposal suggests that throttling of websites and applications might somehow be good for Internet users.

    Pai has also said that net neutrality rules' "days are numbered" and that he intends to bring a "weed whacker" to various FCC regulations.

    "'Days are numbered' and 'take a weed whacker' are serial killer talk, so that is pretty ominous," Oliver said. "When the Code of Federal Regulations looks out its window at night, there's just Ajit Pai, standing silently holding his weed whacker waiting for his chance."

    Net Neutrality II: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, May 7, 2017.

    Oliver scoffed at the FCC chairman's claim that net neutrality rules have harmed investment. "What he's essentially suggesting there is that as soon as Title II came in, companies said, 'fuck it, investing in infrastructure is way too difficult now, we're not doing it anymore. In fact, pull some of the cable out of the ground, we're going back to the telegraph," Oliver said.

    While Pai has pointed to investment research, Oliver said that "infrastructure investment is harder to measure than you may think" and pointed out that ISPs have told investors that the rules do not impact their network investment.

    Oliver also disputed Pai's claim that there is no evidence of ISPs interfering with websites and applications. "There are multiple examples of ISP fuckery over the years," Oliver said. "For instance, a few years back, Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile at one point shut out Google Wallet from their phones, a product that coincidentally happened to compete with their own mobile payment app," which was called "Isis."

    Oliver noted that Pai is a former lawyer for Verizon and showed video of Verizon making the bizarre claim

    that the FCC is not talking about eliminating net neutrality rules, that no ISPs have asked the FCC to eliminate net neutrality rules, and that the FCC is simply looking to put the existing rules into a more "enforceable" legal framework outside of Title II. In reality, Verizon sued the FCC

    to prevent implementation of net neutrality rules issued without the commission's Title II authority, leading to the FCC's decision to use Title II to enforce net neutrality rules.

    "When Verizon claims, 'hey, we love the open Internet but why don't we just put it on a different legal footing,' it's basically O.J. Simpson asking why you won't let him hold any of your samurai swords," Oliver said.

    Oliver urged viewers to contact the FCC and tell the commission to preserve net neutrality rules and the Title II authority used to enforce them. He also urged viewers to contact their representatives and senators.

    "Every Internet group needs to come together like you successfully did three years ago," Oliver said. "Every subculture must join as one. Gamers, YouTube celebrities, Instagram models, Tom from MySpace if you're still alive. We need all of you, even, and I cannot believe I'm saying this, Donald Trump's Internet fans on sites like 4chan and Reddit, the most powerful online trolls of all. This subject is one of the few things that we actually agree on."

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    Hippie Jew RT propagandist media. Horrible and hardly informative
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    What do ye have against hippie Jews?
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