WASHINGTON – The Federal Communications Commission voted today to open a proceeding that proposes to reverse the treatment of broadband services as common carriage services subject to utility regulation under Title II and otherwise to examine the proper regulatory framework for broadband services. The following statement should be attributed to Craig Silliman, Verizon Executive Vice President - Public Policy and General Counsel:
“Verizon supports net neutrality. Our customers demand it and our business depends on it. Our customers should be able to access the internet wherever, whenever and however they choose. As a company that plays a role in virtually all parts of the web, we continue to strongly support efforts to keep the internet open and widely available. And we support common sense regulation to maintain and protect the open internet.
“From the internet’s beginning, it has provided a powerful, open platform for innovation, free speech, and the free flow of information. The internet quickly became central to our lives, our economy, and our democracy. And for almost all of this history, the internet flourished under a bipartisan consensus that policymakers should minimize regulation and unnecessary government control. This approach promoted the hundreds of billions of dollars of private investment that built the broadband networks that now serve American consumers as well as the vibrant internet economy that has made the U.S. the global leader in innovation.
“But two years ago, the FCC broke from the successful, bipartisan and light-touch formula that got us this far. The FCC applied decades-old public utility regulation (Title II) to today’s competitive and dynamic broadband market. This was a serious mistake that threatens innovation and investment in this important segment of the U.S. economy. The FCC under Chairman Pai’s leadership took an important step towards returning to the regulatory framework that was so successful for so many years.
“As we’ve said before, the best course is for Congress to step in and enact strong net neutrality protections. We will continue to work with the FCC, Congress and all players in the industry to help make that happen.”