Wireless Carriers, ISPs Seek Rehearing of 'Open Internet' Appeal
NEWS ANALYSIS: Major wireless carriers and internet service providers want the full U.S. Court of Appeals to rehear its challenge to the Federal Communications Commission Open Internet order.Industry group USTelecom along with CTIA are asking the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to grant a rehearing of their petition challenging the Federal Communications Commission over its Open Internet order, which was decided June 15. A three-judge panel upheld the FCC’s decision to regulate all internet carriers as common carriers under Title II of the Communications Act. One of the judges dissented in part. The primary claims in the petition for the rehearing are that the FCC violated the Communications Act, and the intent of Congress by reclassifying the internet under Title II. The petitioners also assert the court was wrong in deferring to the FCC as an expert agency in regards to the internet. If the court grants what is called an en banc hearing, then a substantial number of judges on the Court of Appeals will hear the case. The US Telecom Association is the primary petitioner asking for the rehearing. USTelecom is arguing that the court wrongly authorizes the FCC to expand its regulatory authority over the internet, that the FCC’s actions ignore Congress and that its interpretation of previous court decisions involving the internet was wrong.
CTIA has joined the petition with its own approach, which concurs with the petition by USTelecom, but adds its own argument that wireless broadband is covered under a separate part of the Communications Act and that the FCC was in violation of the law when it put both wired internet access and wireless broadband under the same rules.