Mozilla’s crazy plan to fix net neutrality and turn broadband into a utility – and why it could work


Well here’s an interesting twist on the net neutrality debate. Mozilla, the open source foundation behind the Firefox browser, thinks that it has found a legal way to get the Federal Communications Commission to protect network neutrality and to give consumer activists calling for the agency to regulate broadband as a utility what they want.

Mozilla filed a petition with the FCC Monday asking the agency to recognize that, in addition to the relationship between ISP’s and their end customers, there is a separate relationship between the content provider (Amazon, Google, Netflix etc) and the ISP, and that relationship should be classified as transport under Title II of the 1996 Telecommunications Act.

Instead of saying the ISP simply has a duty to deliver all packets over its pipes to the consumer without discrimination, Mozilla claims there is a second legal obligation: a duty the ISP owes to content providers, who expect their packets to…

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