Last week, Jerry Ellig and I filed a reply commment (PDF) in the FCC’s ongoing broadband competition proceeding. In it we examined the evidence put forth during the comment period. Today we summarize our findings in an op-ed in TCS Daily:
The Federal Communications Commission recently asked for evidence that broadband Internet companies currently engage in data discrimination that would justify regulation of the Internet. … … the Commission explicitly asked commenters to “provide specific, verifiable examples with supporting documentation, and [to] limit their comments to those practices that are technically feasible today.” Close to 10,000 comments were submitted to the FCC, yet all but 143 were what the FCC calls “brief text comments,” many of which were form letters generated at the behest of advocacy groups. Of the 143 more extensive comments, only 66 are longer than two pages, and of these only 20 advocate some form of new regulation. None of these 20 offers any significant empirical evidence to suggest that there currently exists a “market failure” or other systemic problem justifying regulatory intervention in the name of net neutrality.