YouTube Stars Urge FCC To Keep Current Net Neutrality Rules

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Some 165 YouTube creators composing the Internet Creators Guild have reiterated their support for net neutrality in an open letter urging the U.S. Federal Communications Commission to keep current rules that safeguard the open internet. The letter, signed by several content creators on the popular video sharing platform, stresses that any move to repeal the net neutrality protections established during the Obama administration could have an adverse impact on smaller content creators in favor of the large media companies who have the resources to pay for such service.

For starters, the current net neutrality rules classify broadband internet as a utility, thus requiring equal treatment for all data on the part of the internet service providers. Title II is put in place to prevent internet service providers from offering special services that would give customers a quicker access to specific websites. But the new FCC chairman, Ajit Pai, announced the commission's plans in April of this year to repeal the current rules. A month later, the FCC kicked off its plan to overturn the existing net neutrality protections and remove the Title II classification of Internet services in the country. The proposed revision aims to change the classification of broadband internet to Title I, therefore easing the existing regulations. However, in May of this year, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit denied the FCC's request to revise the current net neutrality rules, describing the commission's proposal as ambiguous.

But the court's ruling is not likely to stop the FCC from finding other avenues to have the Obama-era net neutrality rules changed. Pai has been known to dislike the existing rules so much that he even described it as a mistake during the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this year. Now the Internet Creators Guild cautions that any alteration to the current net neutrality rules would jeopardize the livelihood of many smaller content creators and tip the playing field. The letter urges the FCC chairman to help defend net neutrality in order to maintain fair play. Nonetheless, Pai also asked the internet service providers not to throttle customers' access to other websites in an attempt to convince consumers to buy premium packages for internet access. Updates on the FCC's next move to overturn net neutrality could come in the coming months.

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