U.S. Rep. John Conyers, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, has introduced legislation that addresses Network Neutrality’s fair trade aspects by labeling it an antitrust matter. Conyers’ H.R. 5994 would ban discriminatory network management practices by amending the Clayton Act.
The bill, labeled the Internet Freedom and Nondiscrimination Act, would require carriers to promote competition and allow people to use any device they want to on the carriers’ networks. The bill makes exceptions for emergencies, criminal investigations, parental controls, marketing, and improvements to quality of service.
Under the proposed legislation, ISPs could give preference
to certain types of data, but they must give the preference
regardless of the data source. It would ban ISPs from
discriminating based on content, applications, or services.
“Americans have come to expect the Internet to be open to
everyone,” Conyers said in a statement. “The Internet was
designed without centralized control, without gatekeepers
for content and services. If we allow companies with
monopoly or duopoly power to control how the Internet
operates, network providers could have the power to choose
what content is available. Many of the innovations and
products we use every day, such as search engines, music
download services and online video, likely would never have
developed in such a restricted environment.”
U.S. Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., has co-sponsored the
“Recent events have shown that net neutrality is more than
a hypothetical concern. We need a meaningful remedy to
prevent those who control the infrastructure of the
Internet from controlling the content on the Internet,”
Lofgren said. “This legislation will help guarantee that
the innovative spirit of the Internet is not trampled.”
[Source: Internet Week]