"Issue Brief: FCC’s Net Neutrality Rules and Implications for Research Libraries"

The Association of Research Libraries has released "Issue Brief: FCC's Net Neutrality Rules and Implications for Research Libraries."

Here's an excerpt:

FCC Votes to Enact "Net Neutrality" Rules: After years of debate and consideration, on December 21, 2010, the Federal Communications Commission ("FCC") voted 3-2 in favor of enacting a narrow set of net neutrality rules to regulate the practices of broadband providers. "Net neutrality" is the principle that Internet users should have the right to access and provide content and use services via the Internet as they wish, and that network operators should not be allowed to "discriminate"—slow, block, or charge fees—for Internet traffic based on the source or content of its message. . . .

The wording of the net neutrality rules, advanced by FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, appears to reflect an attempt at a compromise between network operators and advocates for strong net neutrality protections—including ARL, ALA, and EDUCAUSE. Ultimately, however, the limited scope of protection in the rules has not fully satisfied the concerns voiced by parties on both sides of the issue and thus has set the stage for further debate over regulation in the courts and in Congress.

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