Federal Communications Commission

Essential Pittsburgh
5:32 pm
Mon May 5, 2014

Net Neutrality 101 and What's at Stake With the FCC Ruling

Earlier this year a federal appeals court struck down key provisions of the FCC’s net neutrality rule causing concern over internet users' accessibility.
Credit Lindsey Turner / Flickr

Net neutrality, the concept used when we talk about the importance of a free and open internet has an uncertain future. Recent rule changes from the Federal Communications Commission may alter the way internet service providers offer access to consumers. 

Orion Czarnecki is an internet security consultant who breaks down the concept of net neutrality.

"When a consumer would increaser or request any type of traffic over the internet, whether its video, a website, email, that traffic is treated by their internet provider as equal. No traffic is favored over another type of traffic. So a video from Netflix is not favored over a video from YouTube. A webpage request at CNN is not favored over a webpage request from MSNBC." 

But this concept has changed with a new ruling from January of this year.

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Essential Pittsburgh
4:03 pm
Tue February 18, 2014

Comcast Merger with Time Warner Concerns FCC

Philadelphia-based Comcast hopes to buy New York-based Time Warner.
Credit Steve Garfield / flickr

Media giants Comcast and Time Warner may change the way consumers receive their cable, television, and internet, pending negotiations with the FCC over a merger of the two companies.

Critics worry that a merger would create a cable monopoly with zero competition in areas where Comcast and Time Warner serve as the sole provider.

Philadelphia Inquirer consumer and technology columnist Jeff Gelles says the Antitrust Division of the Justice Department had to update how they define essential services to include cable TV as the dominant provider of broadband Internet. 

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