California Net Neutrality Action
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California Net Neutrality Action

Posted April 13th, 2018 by seanm

California Net Neutrality Action
Call to Action: California Net Neutrality Act SB 822

Hearing in Sacramento on Tuesday April 17, 2018

Access Humboldt supports universal access to open secure networks.

Today Access Humboldt is asking residents of the North Coast region to contact your elected officials and let them know your thoughts on Open Internet and the California Net Neutrality Act (SB 822). And engage your social media and human networks to build support over the coming days.

Net Neutrality has been an important pillar of public policy to protect open internet service regardless of income or geography.

Following the potential loss of open internet protection under recent FCC actions, state and local jurisdictions are stepping up to protect local voices.

Today Access Humboldt encourages citizens and government officials to adopt local policy statements (below), promote federal actions, and support State laws like California’s SB 460 and particularly - SB 822 California Net Neutrality Act, which will:

- Make it unlawful for broadband internet providers to block or limit internet services, to interfere with or disadvantage customers’ access to internet service, or to engage in deceptive or misleading marketing practices.

- Expressly allow the Attorney General, a district attorney, or a city attorney to enforce these prohibitions under the Unfair Business Practices and Deceptive Advertising provisions of law.

- Direct the CA Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to establish new rules to enforce net neutrality requirements, to use the state’s role as a customer and as a funder of key internet services to ensure the state “practices what it preaches” regarding net neutrality, and provides “plain English” information to consumers on net neutrality rules.

Access Humboldt's executive director Sean Taketa McLaughlin said: "Now is the time to let your local, state, national and tribal officials know that you want them to secure an open internet! SB 822 (Sen. Weiner) bill, the California Net Neutrality Act, is up for a crucial hearing in Sacramento and Congress has a real chance to undo the damage caused by FCC's misguided action and retain proven policies for Open Internet."

A proposed policy statement for local governments is being shared to help communities take an informed position that can withstand the anticipated misinformation campaigns of industry lobbyists.
Here is the language:

Proposed Policy Statement for Local Jurisdictions:

Support Open Internet

Open Internet is the idea that all information on the internet should be treated the same way when it comes to transmitting data over the network.

Big corporations have been attacking Open Internet protections, especially the concept of Net Neutrality that prevented internet providers from creating prioritized “fast lanes” for some content by speeding up access to their business partners and slowing down access to everything else.

It is essential for citizens and government officials to support and defend Net Neutrality and the principles of the Open Internet in order to make sure that propaganda and advertising don’t drown out accurate, unbiased information that is essential for democracy.

Local agencies have come to rely on the internet as an open medium with the assurance that a service provider will deliver a resident's request for government content just the same as they deliver any other content. Cities, Counties, Tribes and other local jurisdictions cannot allow private internet service providers to be the gatekeeper between our residents and the government services on which they depend every day.

Responsible government officials must take all available steps to ensure the internet remains open and to keep service providers from throttling, blocking or limiting government content on the internet. To that end, to the extent permitted by law and within our control, decision-makers should:

1. Procure applicable internet services from companies that do not block, throttle, or provide paid prioritization of content on sites that cities run to provide critical services and information to their residents.

2. Ensure an open internet connection with any free or subsidized service offered to residents.

3. Not block, throttle or engage in paid prioritization when providing internet service directly to residents, such as through free public Wi-Fi or municipal broadband.

4. To the extent permitted, require clear and accessible notices of filtering, blocking and prioritization policies with enforceable penalties for violations to protect consumers from deceptive practices.

5. Monitor the practices of internet service providers so consumers and regulators can know when a company is violating open internet principles or commitments.

6. Encourage consumer use of ISPs, including municipal options, that abide by open internet policies.

For more information, contact Sean Taketa McLaughlin, e: sean@accesshumboldt.net
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Access Humboldt is a non-profit, community media & broadband organization serving the residents and local jurisdictions of Humboldt County on the North Coast of California USA, managing resources that include: cable access TV channels; KZZH FM 96.7 community radio; a wide area broadband network with dedicated optic fiber connections to twenty locations serving local jurisdictions and community anchor institutions; broadband access wireless networks; a Community Media Center with studio and other production equipment and training on the Eureka High School campus; and ongoing operational support for public, educational and governmental access media services.

AccessHumboldt.net

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