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Saturday, June 14, 2014
FCC To Examine Slow Internet Speeds

U.S. Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler has directed the Commission to review agreements between Netflix, Verizon, Comcast and other content and Internet providers to figure out whether they are causing slow web download speeds for some consumers.

"Consumers have complained to the Federal Communications Commission about the ongoing spat between Netflix and Internet service providers (ISPs). Both sides accuse each other of causing a slowdown in Internet speeds by the way they route traffic," FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said on Friday.

FCC is curently seeking comments on the Open Internet rule. If adopted, the new rule would prohibit bad acts such as blocking content or degrading access to content. However, there is another area of Internet access, and that is the exchange of traffic between ISPs and other networks and services.

In the Netflix versus Verizon case, the question is whether Verizon is abusing Net Neutrality and causing Netflix picture quality to be degraded by "throttling" transmission speeds.

"Consumers pay their ISP and they pay content providers like Hulu, Netflix or Amazon. Then when they don't get good service they wonder what is going on. I have experienced these problems myself and know how exasperating it can be," Wheeler said.

The FCC will obtain the information needed to understand precisely what is happening in order to understand whether consumers are being harmed.

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