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FCC votes down Obama-era ‘net neutrality’ rules

Posted at 1:20 PM, Dec 14, 2017

WASHINGTON, DC – DECEMBER 14: Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai listens during a commission meeting December 14, 2017 in Washington, DC. The FCC is scheduled to vote on a proposal to repeal net-neutrality. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (AP) —The Federal Communications Commission has voted on party lines to undo sweeping Obama-era “net neutrality” rules that guaranteed equal access to internet.

The agency’s Democratic commissioners dissented in the 3-2 vote Thursday.

The FCC’s new rules could usher in big changes in how Americans use the internet. The agency got rid of rules that barred companies like Comcast, AT&T and Verizon from playing favorites with internet apps and sites.

The broadband industry promises that the internet experience isn’t going to change. But protests have erupted online and in the streets as everyday Americans worry that cable and phone companies will be able to control what they see and do online.

Net-neutrality supporters plan legal challenges. Some Democrats hope to ride that wave of public opinion into the 2018 elections.