Mignon Clyburn, Fierce Critic Of Net Neutrality Rollback, Quitting FCC Post

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Mignon Clyburn, a Democrat who has served for eight years as one of five commissioners of the Federal Communications Commission, said she will resign from the regulatory body before its next open meeting in May.
She made the announcement during an FCC meeting today. “I’ve done all I know to do. And it’s time for me to serve in another way,” she said, according to multiple press accounts of the meeting.
Clyburn’s departure leaves an empty seat on the commission, which is…

FCC Chairman Rejects Senators’ Request To Review Sinclair’s Broadcast License

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A dozen senators called on the Federal Communications Commission to investigate Sinclair Broadcasting Group for distorting the news, and to pause its review of the pending acquisition of Tribune Media.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai immediately shot down the request, saying it would conflict with his commitment to the First Amendment and freedom of the press.
Eleven Democratic senators and one independent, Bernie Sanders, took issue with Sinclair forcing local news anchors to read…

Internet Association Seeks to Intervene in Net Neutrality Lawsuits

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WASHINGTON — The trade association representing major internet firms like Google, Facebook and Netflix is seeking to intervene in a host of lawsuits filed against the FCC after it repealed most of its net neutrality rules. In a petition filed on Thursday, the Internet Association argued that without the net neutrality rules, “internet companies and […]

Sinclair Chief Insists Tribune Talks With Regulators Are “Business As Usual”

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During a conference call with investors to discuss their quarterly results, Sinclair Broadcasting execs faced the inevitable question of how their discussions with Washington about acquiring Tribune Media have been going.
The $3.9B consolidation, announced 10 months ago, is large not just in size but in terms of ramifications for the industry and for broadcast journalism. After opposition began flaring up in various quarters in recent months, the review has started to move…

Sinclair Reports Jump In Q4 Profit, Projects Tribune Media Close By Springtime

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Sinclair Broadcast Group reported a surge of profit in the fourth quarter, which it attributed to changes in U.S. tax law making the advertising climate more favorable for companies advertising on its local stations.
The No. 1 local TV station owner also provided an update on its long-awaited acquisition of Tribune Media, projecting it will close during the spring quarter.
Total revenues for the quarter ending December 31 dropped 8% from the year-earlier period, to $734…

Net Neutrality: Dems Say One More GOP Senator’s Vote Can ‘Save the Internet’

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Democrats aren’t letting net neutrality go without a fight.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer laid out a plan in a Tuesday post for Wired to foil the Federal Communications Commission’s “wrongheaded” decision to rollback Obama-era regulations. The FCC, spearheaded by Chairman Ajit Pai, voted in December to repeal current rules that bar telecom giants from “throttling” or slowing down access to certain sites, or charging more money to access internet “fast lanes.” Last week, the FCC set April 23 as the official date to end net neutrality — giving Democrats 60 legislative days to mount their defense.

“That means that now is the moment to #SavetheInternet,” wrote Schumer. His mission? Find one more GOP member to flip against the Trump-appointed chairman.

Also Read: Patty Duke’s Name Fraudulently Used to Oppose Net Neutrality, Son Says

“All 49 senators in the Democratic caucus are united in support of our CRA to stop the FCC from destroying the free and open internet. We also have the backing of Senator Susan Collins, a Republican from Maine, who has pledged to vote with us,” added Schumer. “That leaves just one more vote to ensure the internet remains free and accessible to all.”

Hitting 51 senators is the magic number, spurring a Congressional Review Act that would “allow Congress to overturn regulatory actions at federal agencies with a simple majority vote in both chambers,” Schumer explained.

Pai has argued the prevailing “heavy handed” rules have stymied investment, and that tech innovation flourished prior to the 2015 regulations. “What is the FCC doing today?” asked Pai at Commission’s vote in December. “Quite simply, we are restoring the light-touch framework that has governed the internet for most of its existence.”

Also Read: FCC Strikes Down Net Neutrality

The former Verizon attorney has also been skeptical the new rules will allow major broadband companies to severely hamper their competition since they’ll have to disclose the sites they’re throttling.

Detractors like Sen. Schumer have argued Pai’s plan helps big internet service providers while hurting the consumer. After April 23, there will be little in the way of ISPs charging more for access to Netflix or content from competitors, if they desire. Bundle plans, allowing companies to charge customers a certain amount for social media and another price for streaming sites, will also be on the table.

And to show he’s in touch with the kids, Schumer tweeted on Tuesday the FCC’s new order could kill “Netflix and chill.”

Without #NetNeutrality when a couple is streaming their favorite #Netflix show but it keeps lagging and killing the mood, who will be to blame?

— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) February 27, 2018

Others followed suit on Twitter, including the ACLU, Sen. Brian Schatz and Sen. Cory Booker.

Congress can overrule the Federal Communication Commission’s reckless decision to end #NetNeutrality — they just need one more senator to put free speech rights over big corporate interests. https://t.co/Dk7dgq2jha

— ACLU (@ACLU) February 27, 2018

The idea behind net neutrality is that no corporation gets to block or slow websites you visit. Pay your provider and you get the whole Internet. The good news is that we now have 50 Senators to undo what the FCC did. We need just one more Senator to stand up for #NetNeutrality

— Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) February 27, 2018

Block shots ????, not the internet. #OneMoreVote to save #NetNeutrality pic.twitter.com/g6y1haLKvM

— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) February 27, 2018

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FCC Sets Date for Net Neutrality Pullback

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AT&T Calls for Congress to Pass Net Neutrality Law