Grand coalition damn Commission’s plans as “grave threat to the Internet”.
A coalition of tech’s biggest companies has attacked the FCC’s plans to allow telecoms companies to financially discriminate between traffic in an open letter published yesterday.
In a letter addressed to FCC chair Thomas Wheeler and several commissioners, the coalition expressed "support for a free and open internet" and cited benefits of economic growth and freedom of speech and opportunity.
"Instead of permitting individualised bargaining and discrimination, the Commission’s rules should protect users and internet companies on both fixed and mobile platforms against blocking, discrimination, and paid prioritisation, and should make the market for internet services more transparent," the letter said.
It is signed by the majority of tech’s big names, including Amazon, Dropbox, Ebay, Facebook, Google, Kickstarter, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Netfix, Reddit, Tumblr, Twitter and Yahoo, in addition to more than 100 other companies.
Though the letter does not prescribe a course of action, it does say: "This Commission should take the necessary steps to ensure that the Internet remains an open platform for speech and commerce so that America continues to lead the world in technology markets."
Earlier this year, the FCC promised to rewrite its rules after an American court ruled that it did not have the authority to enforce those previously written. In a leak to the Wall Street Journal it was claimed the FCC would allow "preferential treatment" as long as "commercially reasonable" deals were available for all companies.
Wheeler has said the commission "must stand strongly behind its responsibility to oversee the public interest standard and ensure that the Internet remains open and fair," principles many would argue have been abandoned in recent weeks.