The last couple of weeks saw a massive debate in the U.S. come to a final end. This was of course, the debate revolving around Net Neutrality. For those that did not pay too much attention to the headlines at the time, the argument centered around the notion of reclassifying broadband services (including mobile) as a ‘utility’. By doing so, would mean regulators like the FCC have a legal basis (and therefore power) to act upon companies who seemingly flaunt the newly proposed Net Neutrality rules. The ending of this debate came, when the FCC voted 3-2 in favor of reclassification.
Now, in fairness, this was not technically the end of the debate at all. In fact, it could be argued that the voting on Net Neutrality was simply the closing of the reclassification chapter and the opening of the next legal chapter. That is because some carriers, are very much against such reclassification and feel regulators should not be given the ability to regulate the internet in such a manner. As a result, those like Verizon have made their position on the debate and reclassification extremely clear. It is worth pointing out though, not all carriers are against the reclassification (in its basic sense) with the likes of T-Mobile voicing they do not have any major concerns
Well, since the vote took place, the growing consensus has been that a number of companies are going to appeal against the imposing of Net Neutrality rules. It was believed that Verizon would be one of the companies who would be taking such a stance. However, a new report by Reuters (source link below) suggests that Verizon intend to take a more backseat approach in any appeals or lawsuits and instead will leave such legal arguing to the to industry trade associations like the CITA (Cable and Telecommunications Association). It seems one of the reasons the Reuters (unnamed) sources are suggesting for Verizon’s (and the likes) backseat approach, is the ability to deflect negative attention away from themselves. Their opposition to Net Neutrality has received negative publicity in the past and by avoiding direct and personal opposition they are hoping to lessen such negative associations in the future.