The battle over net neutrality continues in courts and state legislatures following a Federal Communications Commission decision to put an end to the protection. Content creation, including custom content creation, could be affected by the outcome of the debate.
The FCC has decided to abandon the Obama-era rules requiring Internet Service Providers such as Comcast and Spectrum to treat all Internet traffic equally. But a dozen challenges to that decision have been filed by 22 state attorneys general.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco will hear the cases, Reuters reports, setting the stage for what could be a legal fight over net neutrality. According to the news agency:
New York, California, Illinois, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Pennsylvania are among the states challenging the decision, arguing the FCC cannot make “arbitrary and capricious” changes to existing policies and that it misinterpreted and disregarded “critical record evidence on industry practices and harm to consumers and businesses.”
Meanwhile, Washington state leaders aren’t waiting for the courts to sort all this out. The state legislature has passed and Gov. Jay Inslee has signed a law protecting net neutrality, which bars service providers from slowing down certain web traffic or charging more for access to certain sites.
According to CNN:
Inslee said the new measure would protect an open internet in Washington, which he described as having “allowed the free flow of information and ideas in one of the greatest demonstrations of free speech in our history.”
HB2282 bars internet service providers in the state from blocking content, applications, or services, or slowing down traffic on the basis of content or whether they got paid to favor certain traffic. The law goes into effect June 6.
Content companies such as Netflix, as well as marketers who rely on custom content creation, have been among those opposed to the FCC repeal of net neutrality.