Neutering Net Neutrality Near After Trump Appoints New FCC Chair Ajit Pai

US President Donald Trump has appointed Ajit Pai as the new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman, meaning big changes could be coming to the internet – including the end of net neutrality.

What is Net Neutrality?

Net Neutrality is basically the idea that Internet Service Providers (ISP’s) must treat all internet traffic the same. They should not charge more based on where the traffic is from or what the traffic is specifically. It also means ISP’s should not purposely slow down certain kinds of traffic. The core idea is that the internet should be seen as a public utility.

Net Neutrality has many supporters, but also many opponents – as it goes against free-market principles.

Ajit Pai is a big opponent of Net Neutrality

When the FCC implemented Title II, the Order that implemented Net Neutrality, here is what Pai had to say: “On the day that the Title II Order was adopted, I said that ‘I don’t know whether this plan will be vacated by a court, reversed by Congress, or overturned by a future commission. But I do believe that its days are numbered.”

While Net Neutrality sounds like an open concept, it requires government regulation to enforce. After all, the internet service providers are private companies.

That is the core of Pai’s approach, as he is against government regulations that force more legal privacy protections, mandating higher speeds, and previous government blocking of mergers.

However, Pai does want to increase quality internet access. Rather than use government mandates, Pai wants to reduce regulation that have blocked updates of dilapidated infrastructure in parts of Rural America. Removing those regulations could lead to an increase in higher-quality internet infrastructure, increasing access to high-speed internet in areas that are currently underserved.

Pai certainly sounds optimistic:

Spencer Fernando

Photo – Twitter