Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski is expected to outline network-neutrality proposals on Monday, according to Reuters. The proposals could become rules at the FCC's October meeting.
Neutrality advocates want Internet service providers barred from blocking or slowing Internet traffic based on content. ISPs, including AT&T, Verizon Communications, and Comcast, say growing traffic needs to be managed, and they contend that neutrality could stifle innovation.
"He is going to announce rule making" at a speech to the Brookings Institution, a Reuters source said. "The commission will have to codify into new regulations the principle of nondiscrimination."
"We will reserve full judgment until we know all the details, but we are very pleased to see the FCC protecting the open Internet's free market for speech and commerce," Ben Scott, policy director of Free Press, said. "It will be a big win for consumers if the FCC delivers strong Net-neutrality rules that apply across all technologies."
At the urging of Free Press, the FCC under former Chairman Kevin Martin found that Comcast blocked file-sharing sites it blamed for network congestion. Comcast is appealing, arguing that the FCC cannot enforce principles not approved by Congress.
"We are waiting to read the chairman's proposal, but as we've said before, we are concerned about the unintended consequences that Net-neutrality regulation would have on investments from the very industry that's helping to drive the U.S. economy," said Chris Guttman-McCabe, vice president of regulatory affairs for CTIA. "We believe that this kind of regulation is unnecessary in the competitive wireless space, as it would prevent carriers from managing their networks -- such as curtailing viruses and other harmful content -- to the benefit of their consumers."