The DOJ Sues California to Stop Their New Net Neutrality Law

01 October, 2018, 23:27 | Author: Gerard Cortez
  • Gov. Jerry Brown speaks during an interview with The Associated Press in Sacramento Calif. California has become the first state to require publicly traded companies to include women on their boards of director

Three states - Oregon, Washington and Vermont - passed their own net neutrality bills ahead of California, though none of them were as strict. California is now set to wage a legal battle against the federal regulator that will decide the outcome of state-level net neutrality in the entire country. That action led to a backlash in a number of states, which have sought to pass their own rules of the road for internet service.

The state law would guarantee what is known as net neutrality - rules that were established during the Obama administration, but that the Federal Communications Commission under President Trump rescinded a year ago.

"Once again the California Legislature has enacted an extreme and illegal state law attempting to frustrate federal policy", U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement.

"While the Trump Administration does everything in its power to undermine our democracy, we in California will continue to do what's right for our residents", Wiener said in a statement.

The new law prohibits internet providers from blocking or slowing data based on content or from favoring websites or video streams from companies that pay extra.

The bill signed by Brown highlighted a six-year study conducted by Credit Suisse of more than 2,000 companies worldwide that showed having women on boards was linked to improved business performance for key metrics, including stock performance. In light of the FCC's more recent deregulatory order, federal officials are asking for California's net neutrality law to be invalidated, and industry groups are expected to join the effort.

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The FCC has said instead that other agencies, such as the Federal Trade Commission, should take a more active role in protecting the public from violations of net neutrality.

Barbara van Schewick, a law professor at Stanford University and an advocate for tougher net neutrality policies, agreed.

The lawsuit filed Sunday by the U.S. Department of Justice came roughly an hour after Gov. Now, the question is: Will the House support net neutrality, or will it - or President Donald Trump - shovel dirt on net neutrality's grave?

Tech leaders should be on the lookout for a shift of regulatory power.

The Trump administration repealed the Obama era rules on net neutrality in December 2017. Thirty other states are debating net neutrality measures of their own. In a court filing for an injunction, the Justice Department said that companies "cannot realistically comply with one set of standards in this area for California and another for the rest of the nation - especially when Internet communications frequently cross multiple jurisdictions".

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