Verizon Claims Right to “Edit” What You See on the Internet


Noel Brinkerhoff
All Gov
July 15, 2012

Like other Internet service providers, Verizon is fighting to derail the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) rules for network neutrality. But Verizon has set itself apart from other ISPs with its legal arguments for why the FCC’s Open Internet Order should be tossed out.

In its legal brief filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, Verizon lawyers claim the FCC has exceeded its regulatory authority by trying to dictate how ISPs control the flow of information across their networks. More importantly, the company claims the net neutrality rules violate its First Amendment and Fifth Amendment rights.

As Verizon sees it, “broadband networks are the modern-day microphone by which their owners [e.g. Verizon] engage in First Amendment speech.” Furthermore, the company should be allowed to act like a newspaper does, selectively choosing what information should be allowed to stay and what should be selected out.

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