By Anders Hagstrom
Net neutrality activists left signs at Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai’s house Saturday, telling his children that their father was an “evil” man who “murdered” democracy.
The cardboard signs list Pai’s children by name, telling them that “you don’t have to be evil.” Pai’s leadership of the FCC has been fraught with criticism due to his rejection of net neutrality policies advocated by former President Barack Obama’s administration. The FCC announced last week that it plans to role back net neutrality rules, triggering protests outside the Pai family’s home for the second time this year.
I have a friend that lives near @AjitPaiFCC. Net neutrality “activists” posted these signs, featuring his children’s names, outside his house. Pizzas also reportedly sent to his house every half-hour last night. pic.twitter.com/jWI4gV6Hvc
— Brendan Bordelon (@BrendanBordelon) November 25, 2017
Pai argues that it is in the country’s best interest to keep the internet a free and open market, and that means eliminating government regulations. His critics, however, argue that continued government intervention is necessary to prevent massive corporations from monopolizing the internet and racking up data costs.
Obama-era neutrality rules would have legally prevented internet service providers (ISPs) such as Comcast from discriminating against certain types of traffic. These regulations would effectively prevent ISPs from providing faster internet to higher-paying customers.
For an extended period of time, the FCC hosted an online forum for the public to submit comments and thoughts on net neutrality rules. While the whole process was an attempt at bureaucratic democracy, it ended up as sort of a mess due to the appearance of hundreds of thousands of fake posts from all parts of the world, including so many duplicates, and thus of highly unlikely authenticity.
Now, weeks after the FCC’s Electronic Comment Filing System for net neutrality rules closed, the federal agency is pushing ahead.
The vote on Pai’s proposal is likely to occur in December.