Two reps sponsor net neutrality bill in House
In an effort to prevent Internet service providers (ISPs) from blocking or favoring certain content on consumers' computers, Rep. John Conyers, a Democrat from Michigan, has introduced The Internet Freedom and Nondiscrimination Act of 2008. The bill was co-sponsored by Democrat Zoe Lofgren of California.
If passed, the net neutrality bill would allow consumers equal access to all content, applications and services online — including search engines and banner ads. ISPs would still be able to manage traffic, but not discriminate against competitors. Providers would also be required to interconnect with competing ISPs “on a reasonable and nondiscriminatory basis.”
“The Internet was designed without centralized control, without gatekeepers for content and services,” Rep. Conyers said in a statement. “Many of the innovations and products we use every day, such as search engines, music download services and online video, likely would never have developed in a restricted environment,” he added.
ISPs that do not honor the equality rules would be subject to antitrust violations.