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Congresswoman Maxine Waters

Representing the 43rd District of California

Congresswoman Waters Supports the Net Neutrality Day of Action and Fights for Internet Freedom and Privacy

July 12, 2017
Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Twaun Samuel or Rykia Dorsey

Phone: (202) 225-2201

Congresswoman Waters Supports the Net Neutrality Day of Action and Fights for Internet Freedom and Privacy

WASHINGTON -- Congresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-43), Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee, released the following statement today in recognition of the Net Neutrality Day of Action:

“Today I stand, joined by hundreds of companies, advocates, and concerned Americans, in support of the Net Neutrality Day of Action and to speak out against the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) so-called ‘Restoring Internet Freedom’ rulemaking – a proposal that should frighten anyone who values equal access to the web. If these rules are implemented, massive internet service providers like Comcast, AT&T, and Verizon will be allowed to speed up and slow down the internet, block website traffic, and give preferential treatment to customers who pay more. The internet treats all web traffic equally, but the recently proposed rules create two internets: a faster, more open internet for those who pay to play, and another internet for the rest of us. Communities of color, students, and many ordinary consumers may have their online access obstructed. The proposed rules would fundamentally change the internet as we’ve always known it, and roll back years of work by me, and many of my colleagues, to foster a free and fair internet. The only group that stands to benefit from these rules are corporations and their bottom line.

“During the Trump Administration, we have already seen other important FCC rules rolled back.  In April, Donald Trump signed a law repealing FCC privacy rules which would have required internet service providers to obtain consumers’ consent before selling their personal, private information to advertisers. In response, I am co-sponsoring the Online Privacy Act -- federal legislation that would restore our right to say when and how our private information is used.

“I have been a long-time champion of advancing telecommunications policies that protect consumers, internet freedom, and privacy rights. I have actively advocated for net neutrality since the public interest efforts in 2009 surrounding the Comcast-NBC merger, and continuing through the subsequent debates in Congress. We’ve fought long and hard for net neutrality, but it’s a fight that must not cease. If the FCC’s ‘Restoring Internet Freedom’ rules aren’t stopped, they will destroy protections for consumers, reduce competition, and make it more difficult to deliver broadband to the nation’s most vulnerable and remote communities. Now is not the time to reverse the progress that has been made.  FCC Chairman Ajit Pai appears intent on categorically dismantling the FCC’s public interest authority while padding the deep pockets of telecom giants.  I hope that the FCC will listen to everyone who has spoken out in support of net neutrality, and reverse course on its current rulemaking.  The official comment period on the FCC’s proposed rulemaking ends on July 17th.”

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