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One year later, the repeal of net neutrality is already f*cking us over

Who could have possibly seen this coming besides everyone?

ajit pai net neutrality
Image: YouTube

It’s been a year to the day since net neutrality was repealed, so what better time to see how it’s affecting the average web user?

Spoiler: It is, and not for the better!

With the FCC no longer able to enforce even the most basic regulations, some ISPs have already begun to ratchet up ridiculous surcharges and hidden fees. In one case, a Frontier Communications customer found that they were being charged a $10 rental fee for a router they had already bought for $200 (spotted by Twitter user Blake Reid).

https://twitter.com/blakereid/status/1146282824779087873?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1146282824779087873&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.techdirt.com%2Farticles%2F20190702%2F09221042510%2Fkilling-net-neutrality-rules-did-far-more-harm-than-you-probably-realize.shtml

Sounds blatantly illegal, right?

Well, with net neutrality no longer around, the FCC is powerless to do anything about it! Service providers can simply list any fee they want to as applicable and boom, you’re screwed. As Techdirt noted:

Son filed a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission; Frontier responded to the complaint but stuck to its position that he has to pay the fee. A voicemail that Frontier left with Son and his wife said the company informed the FCC that “the router monthly charge is an applicable fee, and it will continue to be billed.

The FCC complaints team told Son in an email, “We reviewed the provider’s response and based on the information submitted, we believe your provider has responded to your concerns.”

We knew this was coming

Although the repeal of net neutrality was widely opposed by consumers and business alike, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai claimed it would lead to a “free and open Internet.” Everyone with half a brain, of course, knew this was bullshit.

With net neutrality dead, it means we can look forward to tons of charges like these in our future. Internet providers have even found a way around disclosing things like caps and throttling, aka the one regulation the FCC instilled to protect users:

ISPs aren’t actually required to display this information on their own websites, even though doing so apparently offers the advantage of being able to obscure it under a mountain of Lorem Ipsum-esque self-laudatory text. Companies may also submit their “transparency disclosures” directly to the FCC.

This can’t be said hard enough, but fuuuuuck you, Ajit Pai.

What do you think? Surprised by this or is this to be expected? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Writer. Editor. Barelyknewer. Hate mail can be directed to j j o n e s @ k a r s f o r k i d s d o t e a r t h l i n k

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