As the FCC moves to institute new Net neutrality rules to replace its regulations thrown out by the D.C. Circuit Court, many are beginning to realize that the decision was a win for the agency, giving it far broader powers than it previously had. The Hill talked with some top tech experts, including TF’s Berin Szoka, about the move:
Other critics of the FCC and its rules worry that the agency will use its broader, undefined authority under Section 706 to justify regulating parts of the Internet ecosystem that have previously been untouched.
The agency could use the authority to write regulations in areas that arguably affect broadband deployment but have traditionally been out of the FCC’s jurisdiction, according to Berin Szoka, president of TechFreedom.
Szoka pointed to the things like cybersecurity standards and copyright enforcement as things the FCC could try to regulate under Section 706.
And while Wheeler is conducting a formal process to rewrite the net neutrality rules, the agency wouldn’t need to conduct a formal rulemaking process every time it wanted to use its Section 706 authority to regulate a new part of the Internet, Szoka said.
In that scenario, “regulation can happen without rulemaking,” he said.