Cincinnati Bell says it will not change its services if net neutrality is dismantled

Cincinnati Bell says it will not change its services if net neutrality is dismantled
(Provided, FCC)

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - The Obama-era net neutrality rules are likely to get the ax as the Federal Communications Commission is preparing for a sweeping repeal that would put more power in the hands of internet service providers to dictate consumer's online experiences.

It is unclear how internet service providers will change their services if net neutrality is gutted. However, some companies including Cincinnati Bell have vowed to not alter their consumer experience.

"Cincinnati Bell has no plans to prioritize Internet content traffic," a spokesman with the company said. "Cincinnati Bell has and will continue to keep treating all Internet traffic the same way."

President Donald Trump's pick to lead the FCC, Ajit Pai, a former lawyer for Verizon, said on Tuesday he shared his plan with fellow commissioners to fully take apart the 2015 online consumer protections.

"All we are simply doing is putting engineers and entrepreneurs, instead of bureaucrats and lawyers, back in charge of the internet," Pai said on Fox News' "Fox & Friends," a cable morning show known to cast friendly coverage of the president.

Part of Pai's proposal is to ensure states cannot impose their own internet regulations to combat the federal government scaling back protections, leaving few options for supporters of net neutrality beyond taking the fight to the courts. The Republican-led FCC will vote on the plan in December.

Proponents of the 2015 regulations say Pai is clearing the way for internet service providers to charge users more for certain online traffic, or purposefully slowing down the service on some websites.

In theory, some websites and services could get preferred treatment or artificially bogged down.  Providers like Comcast, Verizon, Time Warner and AT&T would be allowed to block websites they do not like and charge companies for speedier content delivery.

Spectrum, the company formally known as Time Warner Cable, has not responded to a request for comment.

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