California net neutrality bill goes to Gov. Jerry Brown

Public Knowledge Welcomes California Open Internet Bill to Restore Net Neutrality Protections

California is taking net neutrality regulations into its own hands.

The final bill passage came after the state Assembly voted 61 to 18 to approve the measure Thursday, followed by a 27-to-12 vote Friday by the Senate.

The bill stops Internet service providers from blocking or slowing down certain websites or "classes of applications", like video. "SB 822 is the only state-level bill that truly restores all the 2015 net neutrality protections", said Barbara van Schewick, director of the Stanford Center for Internet and Society.

But the current FCC, led by Republican Chairman Ajit Pai, repealed those regulations in June, with Pai calling them "heavy-handed".

Scott Wiener and is meant to prevent internet service providers (ISP) from changing how they handle traffic based on the websites visited.The bill prohibits ISPs from purposefully blocking legal content, "engaging in third-party paid prioritization" and intentionally concealing information about network management practices, among other things. For example, a company could not give free speedy access to its own streaming service but slow down Netflix. The latter are practices in which companies like AT&T and Verizon offer plans that do not count affiliated content against data caps.

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The fight isn't over yet: The state senate still needs to pass it, and Governor Jerry Brown (D), will need to sign it.

The bill would become California's second major internet law passed in the last few months, The New York Times said. "California could pass a gold standard net neutrality bill, providing a template for states going forward", the organization wrote.

Internet service providers say that zero-rating provides value to their customers and should be allowed. Facebook, Apple, and Alphabet (Google's parent company) each now have two women apiece on their boards.

Assembly Bill 2658, authored by the body's Majority Leader Ian Calderon, D-Whittier, cleared the Assembly on August 27 and is headed to the governor.

They were joined in that action a week later by a coalition of trade groups representing companies including Alphabet Inc, Facebook Inc and Amazon.com Inc.

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"Governor Brown should use his veto pen on this legislation, and Congress should step in to legislate and provide consumer protections that will resolve this issue once and for all", said Jonathan Spalter, president and chief executive of USTelecom, a Washington-based lobby group.

The bill took a hit earlier this year when a state Assembly committee watered the bill down. "The Trump administration destroyed the internet as we know it".

After passing in the Assembly on Wednesday, SB-826 breezed easily through the Senate yesterday. In January, attorneys general of more than 20 states sued the FCC.

While the legislation differs significantly from current FCC rules, it isn't entirely new.

"Internet users are still royally pissed off about the FCC's repeal", Greer said in a statement following Friday's vote.

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Meanwhile, net neutrality advocates cheered what they called a testament to the power of the internet.

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