Lawmakers urge FCC to add wireless to net neutrality push

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In the continuing back and forth on the future of net neutrality regulations, four Democratic lawmakers urged FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski to move forward with his net neutrality effort--and to include wireless networks in those regulations.

In the letter to Genachowski, the lawmakers voiced their opposition to a proposal put forward last week by Verizon (NYSE:VZ) and Google that forbids any kind of prioritization--including paid prioritization--of Internet traffic over wired networks, but wouldn't apply to wireless networks. The plan also carves out exemptions for a set of dedicated Internet services, such as health care monitoring, smart grid technology and new entertainment and gaming options.

"Rather than expansion upon a proposal by two large communications companies with a vested financial interest in the outcome, formal FCC action is needed," wrote Reps. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.), Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) and Jay Inslee (D-Wash.), all of whom are members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. FCC spokeswoman Jen Howard declined to comment on the letter.

The FCC is currently considering whether to reclassify broadband as a Title II common-carrier service. The move is vigorously opposed by telcos and is seen as a key legal prerequisite for moving ahead on net neutrality.

Wireless industry trade group CTIA has argued numerous times that net neutrality should not apply to wireless networks.

For more:
- see this Reuters article
- see this IDG News Service article

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