Net neutrality legislative push renewed

Democrats in the U.S. Senate are again pushing for new Net neutrality legislation, some of them saying at a Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee hearing Tuesday that the Federal Communications Commission does not have enough power to enforce its own Net neutrality rules, or punish network operators who run astray of them. FCC Chairman Kevin Martin argued that the agency has what it needs to get the job done, and that there is no need for new legislation. The FCC's investigation of Comcast's traffic-shaping practices is ongoing.

Republicans and the cable TV industry also spoke against the need for new legislation, but it appears Democrats could be set to revive the Internet Freedom Preservation Act, a bi-partisan bill that failed to gather steam when it was first announced in early 2007. But, that failure was before the Comcast controversy came to light. As Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) noted, "To whatever degree people were alleging that this was a solution in search of a problem, it has found its problem."

Meanwhile FCC Chairman Martin also told the committee that it appeared Comcast also used traffic-shaping to delay some network traffic even at times when network congestion was not a problem.

For more:
- check out this coverage at CNET's News Blog
read this story about Martin's statements at InformationWeek


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