Tech firms are starting to speak up against the FCC’s plan to kill net neutrality: ‘We are disappointed’

net neutrality protest ajit pai picture cat
of net neutrality protest against Federal Communication
Commission Chairman Ajit Pai outside the American Enterprise
Institute before his arrival May 5, 2017 in Washington,

Chip Somodevilla/Getty

  • Business Insider asked some of the biggest tech firms
    in the US about the FCC’s plans to kill net
  • Netflix, Facebook, Google and more are all speaking out
    in support of net neutrality, and against the FCC’s

The FCC is planning to kill net neutrality — and some tech
companies are starting to speak out.

In December,
the US telecoms regulator is planning to roll-back Obama-era
rules that ensure net neutrality — the principle that all
data must be treated equally, and companies can’t charge for
preferential access.

The plan is expected to pass, and if it does, it will mean ISPs
and telecoms firms are able to charge companies for access to
“fast lanes,” or even block certain apps altogether.

Pro-net neutrality activists, who argue the principle creates a
level playing-field online, are up in arms about the plan. And
some tech companies are now speaking out in support of net
neutrality as well, from Facebook to Netflix.

Business Insider reached out to some of the biggest tech firms in
America today to ask for their reaction to the FCC’s plan. Their
initial responses are below, and we will continue to update this
post as more come in.

Facebook: Net neutrality ensures ‘the internet remains open for

In an emailed statement, Facebook’s vice-president of US public
policy Erin Egan said: “We are disappointed that the proposal
announced today by the FCC fails to maintain the strong net
neutrality protections that will ensure the internet remains open
for everyone. We will work with all stakeholders committed to
this principle.”

Google: ‘We are disappointed’

A Google spokesperson says: “The FCC’s net neutrality rules are
working well for consumers and we’re disappointed in the proposal
announced today.”

ajit pai fcc net neutrality
Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai arrives for his
confirmation hearing for a second term as chair of the commission
before the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee
in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill July 19,
2017 in Washington, DC.

Somodevilla/Getty Images

Netflix: ‘We oppose the FCC’s proposal’

In a tweet sent on Tuesday, video-streaming giant Netflix
signaled its support of net neutrality and its opposition to the
FCC’s plans.

Says Netflix:

“Netflix supports strong #NetNeutrality. We oppose the FCC’s
proposal to roll back these core protections.” In response to a
Twitter using calling for it to take action, it added: “We’ve
been supporting for years thru IA and Day to Save Net Neutrality
with a banner on Netflix homepage for all users. More info in Q4
2016 earnings letter, as well. This current draft order hasn’t
been officially voted, so we’re lodging our opposition publicly
and loudly now.”

The company did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s
request for additional comment.

Reddit: Net neutrality is ‘crucial to innovation’

The Reddit community is fiercely pro-net neutrality, and has been
up in arms about the plans. Most of the top posts on the social
news and community site right now are calls to arms, or highly
critical messages targeting the FCC.

The company itself is also pro-net neutrality.

In a statement, a Reddit spokesperson said:

“Reddit is actively monitoring the FCC’s proposed rule changes
that could dismantle net neutrality as we know it. From farmers
in South Dakota to musicians in Kentucky to small business owners
in Utah, net neutrality is just as important to redditors as it
is to Reddit and we will continue to advocate for and work
constructively to maintain a free and open Internet. It is
crucial to innovation and the health of our economy that small
businesses have equal access to the internet, with winners and
losers chosen by consumers, not ISPs.”

Internet Association: The proposal ‘defies the will of millions
of Americans’

The Internet Association, an industry body whose members include
Amazon, Dropbox, Ebay, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft,
Spotify, Uber, and others,
put out a statement on Tuesday criticising the plans. It

“Chairman Pai’s proposal, if implemented, represents the
end of net neutrality as we know it and defies the will of
millions of Americans who support the 2015 Open Internet Order.
This proposal undoes nearly two decades of bipartisan agreement
on baseline net neutrality principles that protect Americans’
ability to access the entire internet.

“The 2015 Order created bright-line, enforceable net
neutrality protections that guarantee consumers access to the
entire internet and preserve competition online. This proposal
fails to achieve any of these objectives. Consumers have little
choice in their ISP, and service providers should not be allowed
to use this gatekeeper position at the point of connection to
discriminate against websites and apps.

“Internet Association and our members will continue our
work to ensure net neutrality protections remain the law of the

Oracle: Declined to comment

Enterprise tech giant Oracle declined to comment when reached by

Salesforce: Reitereated the Internet Association’s position

Salesforce, a member of the Internet Association, directed
Business Insider to the industry body’s statement when
reached for comment.

Apple, Twitter, Cisco, and IBM did not immediately respond to
Business Insider’s request for comment. We will update this story
as we hear back.

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