California Takes Hard Line on Net Neutrality
States are taking net neutrality into their own hands with a mix of lawsuits and legislation designed to restore regulations that were repealed by the FCC in December. Among them, California has now introduced a bill that would make it illegal for state agencies to buy Internet services from ISPs that don't follow net neutrality principles. The California bill is similar in many ways to the law passed by the state of Washington just last week, but it also includes some of the strongest language to date regarding ISP policies.
For example, the new bill explicitly states that service providers can't charge companies to reach consumers via Internet connections. And it requires that ISPs not use their last-mile infrastructure for services that degrade public Internet access over the same link.
Perhaps most interestingly, California legislators are considering a prohibition on most zero-rating implementations -- the practice whereby a fixed or mobile provider allows select services to be exempt from data caps. This goes beyond even what the Open Internet Order mandated before that net neutrality ruling was rolled back.
For more on the California bill and other state and local efforts to address net neutrality, see New Net Laws & the ISP Shame Game on our Light Reading sister site.
— Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, Light Reading
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