11 other higher education and library associations on September 15 submitted net neutrality reply comments to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Net neutrality refers to the
non-discriminatory treatment of digital content flowing over the Internet.
Libraries and institutions of higher education depend upon an open Internet to carryout their missions and to serve their communities. Our organizations are extremely concerned that broadband Internet access providers that offer services to the generalpublic (i.e., public broadband Internet access providers) currently have the opportunityand financial incentive to block, degrade or discriminate against certain content,services and applications. We thus support strong, enforceable policies and rules toprotect and promote an open Internet.
The specific proposals in the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) fall short of whatis necessary to ensure that libraries, institutions of higher education and the public atlarge will have access to an open Internet. It proposes different rules for fixed andmobile broadband access when there is no technological reason to do so. Furthermore,the proposed rules appear to endorse individually-negotiated contracts that could grantsome users expedited transmission and prioritized content, thereby relegating nonprioritizedusers to a “slow lane.”
The undersigned represent universities, libraries and other institutions that provide higher education to millions of students nationwide. We are writing to express our concern about the broadcast video flag (or “broadcast flag”) provision of H.R. 5252, the Advanced Telecommunications and Opportunities Reform Act. We believe the broadcast flag provision would adversely affect our members’ ability to deliver broadcast media via the Internet to support education and, in particular, the delivery of distance education. We urge you to oppose the inclusion of such a mandate in any legislation during this closing session of Congress..
I write concerning the video flag provision of S. 2686, on behalf of the Library Copyright Alliance (LCA), the Association of American Universities, the American Council on Education, the American Political Science Association, EDUCAUSE, the National Education Association, and the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges. When the LCA testified before the Commerce Committee on January 24, 2006, concerning the broadcast video flag, it identified three areas where the flag could adversely affect legitimate non-commercial uses of broadcast television content: distance education; other educational and research uses permitted by the Copyright Act; and discourse involving news, public affairs programs, and public domain materials..
On March 6, 2006, I wrote to you on behalf of the Association of American Universities, American Council on Education, National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges, EDUCAUSE, and Internet2 to ask you to include a strong provision preserving "net neutrality" in legislation you develop to update the nation’s telecommunications policy. Now that the Committee has released a new draft of this legislation (dated March 27, 2006), I am writing again to urge you to include a strong "net neutrality" provision and to incorporate additional provisions that will promote universal access to broadband services..
AAU supports enactment of net neutrality provisions as part of the current telecommunications reform effort. Such provisions should focus on prohibiting anticompetitive discrimination that constitutes an abuse of market power. Net neutrality provisions should not prohibit all forms of discrimination or differential pricing. Specifically, telecommunications reform legislation should: prohibit anticompetitive discriminatory behavior, permit differential access pricing based on differential performance or quality of service, prohibit the imposition of new surcharges, separate from access charges, for transporting data over networks..
I write on behalf of the Association of American Universities, American Council on Education, National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges, EDUCAUSE, and Internet2 to ask you to include a strong provision preserving net neutrality in legislation you develop to update the nation’s telecommunications policy. The power of the Internet to support innovation and economic growth and to promote new forms of communication and social services depends on its open architecture..
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