Public Knowledge Condemns House Committee’s Net Neutrality Vote, Sees Progress in ResultApril 26, 2006
For Immediate Release
The House Energy and Commerce Committee today defeated an amendment to draft legislation that would have created an enforceable Net Neutrality policy. The vote was 22-34. Here is the statement from Public Knowledge President Gigi B. Sohn:
“The Committee vote on the Markey amendment was more encouraging than the total might seem. Those of us who advocate for an open Internet substantially narrowed the gap between our position and those who side with AT&T, Verizon and Comcast to close off innovation. Credit should be given to Reps. Ed Markey, Rick Boucher, Anna Eshoo, Jay Inslee and John Dingell for cosponsoring the amendment, and to those members who has the courage to vote for it in the face of a fierce lobbying campaign.
“That being said, we are disappointed but not surprised that the Committee voted to turn over the future of the Internet to the telephone and cable industry. Neither of those two sectors contributed to the creative development of the Internet, and neither is known for innovation. They are known for their desire to control what goes over their networks.
“We hope the House Telecom and Antitrust Task Force will continue its diligent examination of the competitive issues surrounding control of Internet content and traffic. We look forward as well in the Senate to due consideration of the legislation proposed by Sen. Olympia Snowe and Sen. Byron Dorgan, which would put in place effective enforceable rules to preserve the openness of the Internet without interfering with free markets.”
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Public Knowledge is a public-interest advocacy and education organization that seeks to promote a balanced approach to intellectual property law and technology policy that reflects the “cultural bargain” intended by the framers of the constitution.
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