Net Fix: FCC chief on solving the Open Internet puzzle

by Marguerite Reardon,  C/Net

Tom Wheeler, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, never dreamed he’d be fodder for late-night TV comedians. But 12 months into his agency’s rewrite of rules governing Internet access, he’s still trying to explain his plan for saving the Internet.

A former wireless and cable industry lobbyist and venture capitalist appointed to lead the FCC in November 2013 by President Barack Obama, Wheeler became the butt of a humorous 13-minute rant on John Oliver’s HBO show “Last Week Tonight” in June.

“Yes, the guy who used to run the cable industry’s lobbying arm is now tasked with regulating it,” Oliver said. “That is the equivalent of needing a babysitter and hiring a dingo. ‘Here’s $20 for kibble, please don’t eat my baby.'”

What prompted Oliver’s monologue? Wheeler’s proposal for reinstating so-called net neutrality rules that a federal court struck down exactly one year ago today. The rules had prohibited broadband providers from blocking or slowing down Internet traffic and ensured that consumers and entrepreneurs alike had equal access to the Internet.  Read the entire story.

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