The Internet Association is planning to help sue the United States Federal Communication Commission over its repeal of net neutrality protections, The Washington Post reported Friday, citing a statement from the lobbying group which represents the likes of Google, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft, Netflix, and Uber. The announcement of its intent to assist in the upcoming litigation came a day after the regulator published the finalized version of the rules it voted for in mid-December. Before the new rules are officially in force, they must be publicized by the Federal Register, with that particular move being expected to be made by the end of winter.
The controversial repeal has been harshly criticized by the IA who called net neutrality a bipartisan issue that FCC Chairman Ajit Pai and the Republican Party politicized, albeit it didn't provide any claims in regards to the regulator's motivation to do so. The lobbying group is far from the first entity to announce it's planning to help take the FCC to court over its decision, with similar intentions previously being signaled by numerous advocacy groups and even some individuals. The IA currently doesn't have any plans to independently file a lawsuit against the FCC's decision and it's presently unclear which litigation against the regulator will have its official approval and assistance. Chairman Pai remains adamant the net neutrality repeal was necessary because it discouraged investments in the telecommunications segment, consequently hurting innovation and slowing down job growth.
Net neutrality advocates from many sides of the political spectrum repeatedly dismissed Mr. Pai's statements as baseless and have often asked him to procure evidence backing his claims to no avail. A number of telecom giants in the country supported the FCC's decision and repeated its innovation-related arguments. Following the repeal of Title II regulations that define Internet service providers as utility companies, ISPs are able to discriminate against websites by slowing down traffic from certain domains and either ask the owners of such sites to pay in order to avoid a scenario in which their customers are dealing with a throttled service or ask consumers themselves to pay extra for all-inclusive Internet packages that don't throttle their access to any domain.