Boston (April 21, 2017) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) was joined today by Massachusetts digital economy leaders at a roundtable discussion and press conference at Carbonite in Boston in defense of net neutrality. In 2015, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted strong net neutrality rules, ensuring that the internet will remain a level playing field for everyone. The FCC’s Open Internet Order prohibits internet service providers from setting up internet fast and slow lanes, ensuring all online traffic is treated the same. However, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has recently announced plants get rid of the net neutrality rules in the wake of the successful effort by Congressional Republicans to roll back broadband privacy rules that protected consumers from having their person information sold to third parties without their consent. Senator Markey will be introducing legislation to put the FCC’s strong broadband privacy rules back on the books.

“Overturning net neutrality rules would mean Massachusetts’s entrepreneurs, innovators, and content providers would be relegated to internet slow lanes, with fewer customers, and with a bleak future,” said Senator Markey, who introduced the first net neutrality legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2006. “The movement to defend net neutrality has started in Massachusetts, and it will be an historic fight. I’m proud to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our digital economy leaders in defending the world’s greatest platform for commerce and communications.”

“I urge FCC Chairman Ajit Pai to halt the steps he is taking to eliminate net neutrality,” said Mohamad Ali, CEO, Carbonite. “Pai’s proposed ‘deregulation’ simply means allowing the large internet carriers to boost their profits at the expense of innovation of thousands of other companies and the reduction of jobs across America. Let’s embrace the power of a fair and level playing field that has served previous generations of Americans so well.”