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FCC seeks compromise on net-neutrality

Warwick Ashford

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has begun talks with unnamed parties in an effort to get consensus on net-neutrality and draw up a legislative proposal.

The move is the FCC's latest attempt to obtain the power to regulate providers of broadband high-speed internet services, according to US reports.

The FCC wants to re-establish its authority after a US federal appeals court found in April that the regulator had exceeded its authority in asking cable network provider Comcast to stop throttling BitTorrent peer-to-peer file-sharing traffic.

As part of its strategy, the FCC board voted last week to get public comment on how to impose rules and a proposal to reclassify broadband as a telecoms service to put the FCC back in the driving seat.

The issue has pitted US carriers such as AT&T against content providers like Google which want regulation to prevent telecoms firms from favouring or discriminating against certain types of content.

But phone and cable television companies are seeking to build support in Congress for legislation in place of FCC action.

Members of Congress are to begin meetings with representatives from the communications industry on 25 June to discuss topics including the FCC's authority.


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